18V Ryobi Blowers

Nov 23, 2015
I have a bit of an idle/crazy thought.

I don't have a huge need for a blower, and for when I do outside the Homelite branded handheld gas one I have does the job. I considered buying an Echo backpack last year when a local dealer retired/closed, but even for the price on offer I just couldn't justify that one as it would be complete overkill for my needs.

My father in law has an 18V Ryobi that he uses all the time. I've borrowed it, and I've not been overly impressed for heavy duty jobs like cleaning leaves out of the flowerbeds(we have a huge, 100+ year old red oak plus some smaller trees that make that a year round job) but it great for quick and easy like a little grass on the sidewalk or cleaning out the garage.

My BIL has one that he keeps in their camper, and among other assorted jobs he'll use it to blow out grass/dirt/etc that they inevitably track into the camper, clean up around the campsite, and even in a pinch he's pulled it out to help get a reluctant campfire going.

I normally do the latter with my air compressor, but of course that has its own limitations.

I know that for "serious" work, the various 40V systems are a much better choice, but I'm eying getting one of these little 18V units for a couple of reasons. The power is less of a concern since I'm not planning on getting rid of my gas blower, but obviously I want it up to the tasks. When I mow, I mostly mulch(and don't have much in the way of clippings on the driveway or sidewalk to deal with). Also, more of a story than I care to get into, but when I side discharge I'm extremely careful to not go onto the street...so it would be light use of what few clippings are on the pavement and also blowing out the garage.

The latter is a big one, as I'm constantly waiting for my air compressor to refill. My gas blower does start easily, but it's still a pain to start it for a quick job. More importantly, it's LOUD in the garage and leaves the place stinking. A small air blower seems a perfect solution.

And to tag on, I have couple Ryobi 18V tools and a half dozen batteries, so it's the obvious choice for me(if if there are "better" options) especially since I'm invested enough in the battery system that it makes sense to me at least to stick with them. I ended up on that system when my FIL gave me a drill, and there again he's pretty invested in it, so the family loaning for the less frequently used tools is handy.
Are you looking for anecdotes? I have this 350 cfm 18v unit and it does a good enough job for me to blast the front yard after mowing/trimming/edging. I cant see a weaker one being very effective. I also have a Milwaukee 450 cfm, when you pull the trigger its a near instant response vs the ryobi which takes a second or two to spool up but blowing seems about the same.

I have used an 18volt ryobi blower. Absolutely fine for light duty jobs. Clearing a walkway after cutting the law. Much more convenient.
I think the 18v units are a sweet spot right now for smooth concrete and similar surfaces like garage sawdust, decks and walks.

I bought a 40v leaf vacuum. It can be reconfigured as a blower. The 40v is enough be passable at some driveway blowing and weak leaf blowing, but the weight is so much more than a corded version with a notable sacrifice in power. It’s so clumsy that I tried it once and never since - the big 4 stroke gas backpack is still a more convenient tool, which says something - usually electric pays spades in convenience.
Thanks everyone-seems like this might be a good option to supplement my good gas blower.

Obviously I'll go for the highest power I can get. I need to shop the big box store options as I know when I've bought other Ryobi OnePlus tools, a kit with one or two batteries can often be found on sale for a similar price to the bare tool at regular price. I've never bought a loose battery for that reason, and I can stand to wait this one out until I can find a kit on sale.

Heck, if it popped up, I feel like I've seen really inexpensive string trimmer/blower kits. I'm SUPER happy with my Echo SRM-225, but sometimes too it's very tempting to want a small battery trimmer for quick jobs. I have WAY too much to trim to consider anything short of 40V battery, and don't want to go there, but again I like my FIL's trimmer.