Ryobi RY40850 – A Lightweight, Very Maneuverable Snow Blower
The 40 volt Ryobi cordless electric snow blower (actually, snow thrower), cuts a 20 inch wide path and, according to the specifications, can handle snow up to 10 inches deep. But, I wouldn’t hold my breath. Most single-stage electric AND gas snow throwers are not normally capable of efficiently clearing snow depths above 8 inches. If I were able to choose between this electric machine and a gas-powered one, I would pick the gasoline counterpart – every time.
Additionally, most single-stage snow throwers are not able to handle heavy or wet snow – but, they can be excellent tools for clearing light, powdery snow.
My Optimistic Take
- The Ryobi sports a brushless motor – which offers an improvement in power and efficiency over its bargain basement peers.
- The company also maintains that it can throw snow up to 25 feet – but, again, I wouldn’t hold my breath. At best, I’ve only seen them toss the white stuff about 15 to 20 feet off the cleared path.
- The directional discharge chute can rotate 180 degrees for throwing snow at a variety of angles from left to center to right.
- The auger – that picks up the snow and throws it out through the discharge chute is made of a semi-flexible plastic polymer that is thick enough to withstand extremely cold temperatures. Ryobi describes this as an “impeller” but, it is actually an auger that acts in ways similar to an impeller. Two-stage snow throwers have both an auger and a separate impeller to substantially increase the snow throwing power.
- A couple of LED headlights round out the package – offering good visibility on a low light, snowy day.
- Two 5 amp-hour, high-capacity, lithium-ion batteries and a battery charger are included. The good thing about these batteries is that many Ryobi products use the same exact battery and charger – so, if you already have another Ryobi outdoor piece of equipment, the batteries most likely will be interchangeable – giving you a much longer snow throwing time. If the snow removal is going to take longer than 45 minutes to an hour, it wouldn’t hurt to have one or two backup batteries charged and ready to go. These Ryobi 40 volt batteries will fit any 40 volt Ryobi equipment.
- Lastly, the Ryobi RY40850 comes with a limited 5 year warranty – which is a year or two longer than most other snow machines.
My Pessimistic Take
- Single-stage snow throwers are only effective on smooth, mostly level areas – driveways, porches, patios, and decks. Don’t expect to utilize these contraptions successfully on gravel or uneven ground.
- The Ryobi is only good for light, powdered snow. If you have wet, heavy snow, opt for a two-stage snow thrower.
Quotes – Both Good And Bad
The Good Quotes
“The Ryobi RY40850 is extremely strong for an electric snow blower. And, it’s very mobile and easy to steer through the snow.”
“Easy to assemble. A lot less noisy than gas snow blowers.”
“The first time I used this was in heavy wet snow. Worked great and the discharge chute didn’t get clogged up. I just took my time – pushing it through the snow – then backing up a bit – and then pushing forward some more – due to the snow being so wet and heavy.”
“This snow blower gives me the freedom and independence in removing snow that I wanted to remove. It works great for lighter snows!”
“No gas and no electrical cords to fool with. And so – so – so quiet! This Ryobi snow blower was made in heaven.”
“Using this Ryobi 20 inch 40 volt cordless snow blower is a perfect match for those light snows less than 6 inches. It is so quiet I can use it late at night or very early in the morning without disturbing the neighbors. Plus, the extra bright LED lights make seeing what I’m doing extra easy!”
“The battery lasts at least several hours which is enough time to clear my entire driveway!”
“The build quality of this Ryobi 20 inch snow thrower is first-class.”
“Quiet, easy to start, light weight, discharge chute rarely gets clogged, works great with 5 inches of fluffy snow. And, I don’t have to mess with gas, oil, spark plugs, or yanking a cord an endless number of times!”
The Bad Quotes
“The assembly instructions have such small print that they are very hard to read.”
“The batteries take way too long to recharge. Good thing I have a spare available.”
“Sadly, this snow blower did not meet my expectations. In a very, very wet snow, the machine wanted to just push the snow instead of picking it up and throwing it out of the chute. I had to clear the chute many times from it getting stopped up with snow.”
“Not a good machine for heavy snow. It’s good only for fresh, light snow.”
All In All
If you live in an area that doesn’t get snowbound very often – and you have a small to medium sized area to remove light, dry, fluffy snow no more than a half foot high – or so – then, the 20 inch 40 volt Ryobi RY48050 Snow Blower may be right for you. Check it out and see for yourself!
For more information on snow throwers (blowers), go to Snow Thrower Reviews. And, don’t forget to keep some rock salt or ice melt handy – you’ll need it to help keep your areas ice free before and after snow removal. And, if your gloves and socks don’t keep your hands and feet warm enough out there in the snowy outdoors, try some of these Hot Hands Hand Warmers – you’ll be glad you did!
Comments and emails are welcome and replies are promised.
Jim, the Lifelong Gardener