Stihl BR450 Backpack Blower Review: Specifications, Pricing, And More
Gone are the days when landscapers and homeowners had to spend hours raking leaves and other debris. Instead, they rely on leaf blowers to get better results in less time. Whether you own a landscaping company or simply live on a large parcel of land, you may be thinking about purchasing a professional-grade leaf blower.
As you likely know, there are dozens of blowers on the market today. Not all are a smart investment, however. How do you know the difference between a high-end blower and an inferior one? That’s where we come in. In this review, we take an in-depth look at the STIHL BR450 backpack blower.
Our goal is to provide you with honest, reliable and useful information. As such, in preparing this review, we didn’t only consider published material and advertising information about the STIHL backpack blower. Instead, we read through dozens of reviews from both professionals and actual customers. Continue reading for an accurate assessment of the performance and features of the BR450 backpack blower.
What Is A STIHL BR450 Backpack Blower?
The STIHL BR450 is a professional-grade backpack blower with a pull start. If you prefer, you can opt for the STIHL BR450 C-EF, which is the same blower with an electric start. This review focuses on the pull-start model, though.
For decades, STIHL has been a leader in making some of the best power tools on the market. The company’s BR450 backpack blower is no exception. This blower features a low-emission engine that delivers 3.9 bhp. That’s good enough to produce an average airspeed of 186 miles per hour. If that isn’t enough to clear away leaves and medium-sized debris, we would be surprised. Still, the BR450’s airspeed can reach a maximum of 219 miles per hour. For most large properties, that’s sufficient to get the job done. Likewise, the fast air speed easily moves both wet and dry leaves.
The blower only weighs 23.4 pounds, which is lighter than many other industrial blowers available for purchase. The lightweight design and construction of the BR450 makes it feasible for carrying throughout the day while you work on large cleanup projects. The motor fits into an ergonomic backpack, which comfortably straps onto your back. Moreover, the nozzle has a comfortable grip, which helps resists chaffing while you blow debris away from your target area.
Not every user is comfortable with a fixed grip. Fortunately, the BR450 allows you to reposition the grip with just the flip of a clamp. Since the grip moves up and down the blower on a track, you can toggle it into position with about a foot of adjustment allowance. Designed for one-handed operation, the grip moves easily without having to place the blower on the ground. Even better, the BR450 works with a trigger system. Most users operate it with either their index finger or their middle finger. This helps alleviate hand strain when working on massive cleanup jobs.
Whether you want a short nozzle or an extended one, the STIHL BR450 has you covered. This blower’s nozzle locks firmly in place, allowing you to avoid the frustration that comes with flexible blowers. When you want to extend the nozzle, you simply turn a large nut and pull out the suspension tube. Screwing the nut back into place ensures the nozzle stays exactly where you want it to stay.
As a professional-grade blower, the BR450 runs on gasoline. As mentioned above, the model has a pull start. The slightly more expensive STIHL BR450 C-EF has an electric start. Even though the BR450 has a pull start, you likely won’t have much difficulty firing it up. The blower has an intuitive choke that disengages when you pull the throttle. It also has a push primer that is simple to use and conveniently located near the choke. Additionally, the gas tank is large, allowing you to use the blower for a significant amount of time before refueling.
The overall styling of the STIHL BR450 is sleek and elegant. The machine comes in the company’s trademark gray and orange colors. The backpack is black, and the motor cover is white.
STIHL BR450 Backpack Blower Specifications
3.86 cubic inches
3.9 brake horsepower
AVERAGE AIR SPEED
186 miles per hour
MAXIMUM AIR SPEED
219 miles per hour
NOZZLE AIR VOLUME
642 cubic per minute
SOUND PRESSURE RATING
77 A-weighted decibels
While the specifications of the STIHL BR450 backpack blower are impressive by themselves, the blower has some dynamic features that are worth mentioning.
If you have ever used a backpack blower, you know the vibrations can be tiring. After just a few minutes of work with some blowers, you may experience numbness. That isn’t the case with the BR450. STIHL uses its proprietary anti-vibration technology to reduce jarring. While some vibrations continue, most dissipate before they can wear you out.
This blower’s purge pump primer makes starting the machine simple. With just a push or two of the primer, you feed fuel into the BR450’s carburetor. With some blowers, though, you must worry about flooding the carburetor. As you probably know, a flooded carburetor prohibits gas-powered machines from starting. The STIHL BR450’s pump helps prevent flooding. Nonetheless, it is still possible to flood the blower’s carburetor if you don’t remember to disengage the choke after the engine starts. To remove the choke, simply pull the throttle trigger.
Few things are more frustrating than having to locate buttons and levers on a blower continually. With the BR450’s multi-functional handle, you have everything you need to operate the machine literally at your fingertips. In fact, you don’t have to let go of the handle until you are finished with your cleanup project.
The STIHL BR450 is made in the United States of America. Since the blower has a sound-pressure rating of 77 dB(A), you should consider wearing ear protection when you use it. As with all power tools, putting on safety glasses before you begin your project is also a good idea.
STIHL BR450 Backpack Blower Pricing
The STIHL BR450 has a moderate price tag. If you plan to buy one of these blowers, you can likely expect to pay around $400. For a full selection and to take advantage of the company’s warranty, you probably want to purchase your BR450 from an official STIHL dealer. The company has a list of authorized sellers on its website. While many big-box stores and landscape retailers sell STIHL products at their physical locations, many also offer BR450s for sale online.
STIHL BR450 backpack blowers come with a limited two-year warranty. This warranty protects you from defects with either manufacturing or materials. If you intend to rent your BR450 to customers, the warranty period is only 3 months. Because the STIHL warranty is limited, you should be sure you understand all applicable restrictions and limitations. Full warranty information is available on the STIHL website.
The company recommends using fuel that contains no more than 10 percent ethanol. If you use fuel with more than 10 percent, you may damage the inner workings of your BR450. This may also void the STIHL warranty.
How The STIHL BR450 Backpack Blower Compares To Other Blowers
If you are in the market for a backpack blower, you must know what is available. In this section, we compare the STIHL BR450 to three other professional-grade blowers.
- X-TORQ ENGINE: The X-Torq engine design reduces harmful exhaust emissions by up to 60%...
- ERGONOMIC HANDLE: the handle can be adjusted to fit the operator and has rubber inserts...
- COMFORTABLE HARNESS: Padded harness is shaped to fit the contours of the operator.
The Husqvarna 130BT is a unique lightweight back pack blower with the large landowner in mind. It combines very low weight and ease of use for those who have to work for longer periods of time.
We like the Husqvarna backpack machine for its powerful performance and comfortable fit. Like the STIHL BR450, the Husqvarna blower has anti-vibration technology to keep you from experiencing excessive fatigue while using the machine. It also has a one-handed trigger that allows you to operate the device without much effort.
Perhaps the best feature of the Husqvarna blower, though, is its warranty. The two-year limited warranty compares with the STIHL warranty. Since Husqvarna has a well-deserved reputation for delivering exceptional customer service, we don’t think filing a warranty claim is likely to be challenging.
While we are fans of the Husqvarna blower, we don’t think it is better than the STIHL BR450. Instead, it is a bit less powerful, making it less effective for tough jobs. Whether you decide to purchase the STIHL blower or the Husqvarna alternative likely depends on your personal preferences and brand loyalty.
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As a brand, Echo is popular among professional landscapers. That makes sense, as the company’s products are both powerful and durable. The PB-580T is no exception. This backpack blower has a tough engine that delivers some fierce air power. In fact, you get a maximum of 215 miles per hour of wind leaving the suspension tube. That compares basically evenly with the STIHL BR450.
The PB-580T may be a bit more comfortable than the STIHL BR450. As discussed below, our primary beef with the BR450 is its lack of padding on the backpack. The Echo PB-580T has comfort-fit padding that protects your back as you work. It also has vented straps to keep you cool until the job is done.
Nonetheless, the Echo PB-580T is not perfect. A few users report having difficulty starting the machine. Since the STIHL BR450 starts easily, we give the advantage to the backpack blower from STIHL.
You don’t have to break the bank to get a commercial-grade backpack blower. The Poulan Pro 967087101 48cc is less powerful than the STIHL BR450, the Husqvarna blower and the Echo machine, but is still a decent blower.
The Poulan Pro machine is capable of delivering wind speeds up to 200 miles per hour. That should be fast enough to clear even wet leaves from landscaping. The engine is also efficient, meaning you stretch your landscaping dollar every time you pick up the Poulan Pro blower.
Unfortunately, Poulan Pro hasn’t quite figured out ergonomics or comfort. Many users report fatigue and pain when using this machine. If you need a blower that you can use for hours while you clear excessive amounts of debris, the Poulan Pro likely isn’t the best option. We can’t complain about its price tag, though.
While these three competitors offer decent machines, we don’t think any of them is better than the STIHL BR450. Simply put, the BR450 is the most complete professional-grade backpack blower in our opinion.
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STIHL BR450 Backpack Blower Pros And Cons
The Verdict: The STIHL BR450 Backpack Blower Is Worth The Price
Blowers make landscaping jobs and cleanups easy. Unfortunately, there are some weak blowers on the market today. The STIHL BR450 isn’t one of them.
The powerful performance of the BR450 is sufficient for clearing leaves and other debris. Even wet leaves are no match for this machine. If you routinely need to clear leaves from rocks or other landscaping features, the BR450 is likely powerful enough to get the job done.
While we would like to see some padding on the front of the backpack, the STIHL BR450 has some impressive ergonomic features. Its anti-vibration technology helps you work for hours without experiencing much fatigue. Additionally, we love the machine’s lightweight design.
While the STIHL BR450 backpack blower has an expensive price, the machine is worth the investment.