Leaf-blowing season starts right…about…now. In my yard, there are enough trees to create a chaotic mess of leaves. Last year, it took nearly a week of work to clear the yard. Recently, I tested out the Stihl BGA 60 and found the job took about half that time.
One reason is that this model has a max air velocity of 154 miles per hour, the highest rating of any Stihl leaf-blower. Another metric to know is that the blow force is 13 newtons in standard mode and 15 newtons in boost mode. That might seem like gibberish until you take the leaf-blower out and realize it is just powerful and efficient. You don’t waste as much time trying to get the air to blow in one direction and corral the leaves; instead, you have enough force to get the job done.
In my yard, there are several trees in the back planted by a massive rock bed. It means I have a couple of options. I can blow the leaves into multiple piles or make one massive pile. The difference comes down to the quality of the leafblower. With the Stihl BGA 60 I was able to corral all of the leaves on the rock bed (which stretches about one half of a football field) into one huge pile. (I managed to then blow the leaves onto a tarp and put them in a truck bed, taking them to a compost site in about four trips.)
My take on all of this is that the tool helps make the job easier. I’ve used leafblowers without as much power, and it is a constant fight to get the leaves to go where you want them to go.
The Stihl BGA 60 lasts about 15 minutes on a charge. I wished it had lasted just a bit longer, but I also know you can buy a back-up battery and keep the power coming. Because of the added power, you can make short work of the leaves in your yard in less time. If your yard is bigger than mine with more trees, there are higher-end “professional” products that cost a lot more. For $300, the Stihl BGA 60 is a good value for how powerful it is for a normal suburban yard.
Another critical factor is the overall weight. With the battery inserted, the Stihl BGA 60 weighs only eight pounds which is lighter than other models I’ve tested in the past. I’ve used gas-powered blowers and the kind you wear as a backpack, and they weigh easily three times as much. In fact, this model has 65% more power than the previous model. (Not to get super technical, but Stihl provided this explanation of the newton power rating: “Newton (N) is the force needed to accelerate 1 kg of mass at a rate of 1m/sec 3.”)
The blower has a few “extras” as well. The tube extends to help direct the angle from 35.2 inches to 41.5 inches. There’s a slot you can use for hanging the blower in your garage. To use the boost, you just hold the lever down tighter — in most cases, the normal blower speed of 13 newton works just fine, but when you need a quick powerful blast, the boost is handy.
One note about the design. This model looks sleek and futuristic, so it won’t look dated in a few years It has a bit of a rocket-ship design — especially from a side angle.
Overall, the Stihl BGA 60 is a great addition to my fall arsenal for clean-ups. It’s powerful, lasts about the right amount of time (or you can add an extra charger) and helped me finish up my fall yard maintenance faster than ever before.