How Strong is a Leaf Blower? (Explained)

by Alex Kountry
Updated on

A leaf blower is a tool often used for clearing and mulching leaves from gardens, yards and public areas.

The strength of a leaf blower is determined by how powerful its motor is and is CFM and MPH.

The average leaf blower has a CFM between 200 to 400 while stronger ones are often between 500-700 CFM. You should also take into consideration the MPH of the machine which can be between 100- 130.

This article will discuss how powerful a leaf blower is, how much damage it can cause, as well as other possible uses of a leaf blower. 

How Powerful Is A Leaf Blower?

How Strong is a Leaf Blower

Leaf blowers come with different strength and power levels. Some leaf blowers are more powerful than others.

As a homeowner or worker who needs a strong and reliable machine, you can look out for these things to know how strong an intended leaf blower is.

Measuring strength means attempting to determine how much leaves and debris you can clear in the shortest amount of time.

You have to look at the Cubic Feet per Minute and the Miles Per Hour when trying to determine how powerful a leaf blower is.

CFM is a volume measurement of how much air travels through the nozzle of a leaf blower in one minute.

The more air your leaf blower produces, the higher the CFM value. 

You’ll be able to clear a larger area in less time. MPH, on the other hand, determines the speed at which air flows through the nozzle.

The faster and more forcefully that substance can be pushed away, the higher the MPH rating.

The most powerful leaf blowers have a minimum of 600 CFM (cubic feet per minute) and a top speed of 130 MPH (miles per hour).

Wet or condensed leaves, small stones, mud, and freshly fallen snow can all be easily removed with high-powered blowers.

Here is an article I wrote on why does my leaf blower shock me?

How Much Damage Can A Leaf Blower Do?

Although leaf blowers are beneficial for clearing away the leaves and cleaning up, they can actually cause potential damage to human hearing, sight and skin. 

Many of the same greenhouse gases and other air pollutants are produced by cars and trucks are also produced by gas-powered leaf blowers. 

A consumer-grade leaf blower emits nearly 7 times more harmful emissions than a large pick-up truck.

Many leaf blowers are powered by two-cycle engines that lack independent lubrication systems. 

As a result, they demand fuel containing oil. This reaction produces carbon monoxide, hydrocarbons, and various nitrous oxides.

These gases all have an unpleasant odor and are hazardous to inhale.

Leaf blowers also release dust, animal feces, and other harmful particulate matter into the air, which can cause severe lung damage.

The most injuries caused by leaf blowers include:

  • Cuts and lacerations
  • Electrical burns
  • Bruises and contusions
  • Injuries to the eye
  • Hearing loss
  • Breathing problems including asthma

Can A Leaf Blower Be Used On Snow?

Winter is often a cold period with lots of snow falling and this snow can sometimes turn to a nuisance especially when it covers doors and driveways.

Leaf blowers, even though originally designed to blow leaves, can be used for clearing snow.

Before you start clearing away the snow, take note that the snow should be light and fluffy. No more than 4 inches thick. 

Heavy and wet snow might be more difficult for your leaf blower to move, causing the machine to overheat.

Also, liquid might get into the machine and cause some sort of damage.

For snow removal, gas-powered leaf blowers are far safer than electric models. You run the risk of being shocked if you use an electric model.

It is easy for snow to  enter the engine or make the power cord, both of which are bad ideas.

Also here is an article I wrote on best leaf blowers for flower bed

Can A Leaf Blower Be Used To Clean Gutters?

Using a leaf blower is a quick and convenient way to remove detritus from the gutter without using your hands or a rake. 

The leaf blower works by ejecting  a narrow stream of air from its valves to blow away leaves and other debris from the gutter. 

Some blowers can also vacuum up leaves and small twigs and shred them into a bag.

There are two methods for cleaning gutters with a leaf blower.

The first method involves climbing a ladder to reach the gutter and then blowing away the leaves with a handheld blower. 

The second method entails the use of a gutter cleaning attachment that extends the reach of the blower nozzles from the ground.

Using a leaf blower gutter extension kit has been deemed to be safer and more effective than the use of a ladder. 

Can A Leaf Blower Be Used On Rocks?

Rocks and stones are not intended to be picked up by leaf blowers or vacuums because they can cause damage to the machine. 

If you need to collect leaves from pebbled driveways or soil, blow them onto a grassy area first before vacuuming them up.

Some leaf blowers are powerful enough to suck up the rocks into the vacuum, however this is not advisable as the rocks will damage the vacuum in the long run.

Which Leaf Blower Is The Most Powerful?

According to NY Times Leaf Blower Reviews, The Worx WG521 Turbine 800 Leaf Blower is the most powerful leaf blower that was ever tested.

It comes second only to the Toro PowerJet F700 and this is due to the difficult ergonomics.  

This tool is a beast when it comes to moving leaves around the yard. The Worx has a smaller grip than the Toro and no front pommel grip. 

Given the immense power of this tool, if blowing leaves across your lawn is your primary concern, this really is the tool for you.

However, be warned that the lack of handle options results in a serious forearm workout.

Can You Hurt Someone With A Leaf Blower?

There have been questions on how leaf blowers are damaging the environment and other people living nearby.

We all know leaf blowers, especially the gas types, are noisy and release gas emissions.

The noise produced by leaf blowers is one of the more apparent hazards. The noisier the blower, the more powerful the machine.

If you don’t protect your hearing, you could suffer from hearing loss. 

Gas-powered leaf blowers can produce noise levels in excess of 90 decibels, which is far above the comfort and safety levels that would protect the user’s hearing. 

Even with quieter models, the constant noise can be bothersome to those nearby. It can also cause breathing problems.

If someone who has asthma is close to a working leaf blower, the pollution caused by the machine might trigger an episode.

Due to this, many municipalities have enacted legislation restricting the use of leaf blowers.

Can A Leaf Blower Damage A Car?

If you intend to blow dry your car with a leaf blower it is advisable to place it on the lowest possible settings.

This is because a fast stream of air can damage your car as the amount of speed and force coming from the blower might cause problems to your car.

It is also advisable to use a cordless leaf blower as corded ones might not be mobile enough to get to your car. You can use leaf blowers to clean both the interior and exterior of your car.

It’ll make a fast job of drying your car. 


A leaf blower is a common sight in most areas as someone works to clear their yard or even major roads.

Blowing leaves is not the only thing you can use these tools as they can also be used for other activities.

Ranging from moving snow to cleaning gutters, to cleaning cars, there are safe, fun and creative ways for you to use your leaf blowers.

It is advisable to opt for quiet and electric leaf blowers as they are more quiet and do not emit noxious gases into the atmosphere.

The damage that comes with the use of leaf blowers has been a hot topic in recent times.

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About the author

Alex Kountry

Alex Kountry is the founder of HayFarmGuy and has been a backyard farmer for over 10 years. Since then he has decided to write helpful articles that will help you become a better backyard farmer and know what to do. He also loves to play tennis and read books


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