Generally if you buy a snow blower, you won’t have to weigh up the steel auger vs rubber auger debate.
That is because two-stage snow blowers have a steel auger, and single-stage snow blowers tend to have a rubber auger.
Note I say ‘tend to have’, because that isn’t always the case.
With some single-stage snow blowers you will get the choice of a steel auger or a rubber auger.
But how do you know which is best for you?
Let’s take a closer look…
Steel Auger vs Rubber Auger: What is the Best Choice For Your Snow Blower?
If you are buying a snow blower that gives you the choice between a rubber and steel auger, your choice will be determined by the winter conditions your town or city gets. If you have regular, heavy snowfalls and very cold temperatures the steel auger deals better with wet, heavy and packed snow. The rubber auger is ideal for lighter, fluffier snow.
Single-Stage And Two-Stage Augers Compared
Single-stage snow blowers have one auger. This auger is used to scrape snow from the ground and throw it out of the chute in one movement.
Most single-stage snow blowers have rubber augers, but not all.
The American manufacturer EGO offers buyers a choice of a rubber or steel auger in its single-stage snow blowers.
Two-stage snow blowers by contrast all have steel augers.
They draw the snow into the blower in the first stage and then push it onto a high-speed impeller, where it is thrown from the machine in the second stage.
It is the choice offered by manufacturers like EGO of rubber or steel augers that has led to much debate over which is better.
There isn’t a clear-cut answer, as it does depend upon your usage and where you live, but they both definitely have their pros and cons.
So let’s find out what they are.
RELATED ===> Buyers Guide: The Best Snow Blowers on the Market
Steel Augers: What Is Good?
Undoubtedly the main advantage steel augers have over rubber augers is the fact they are much better at dealing with wet and heavy snow.
In fact, EGO claims that you can clear snow up to 50 per cent quicker with the steel auger.
So if you live somewhere that has bad winters, and you will have to deal with stubborn hard snow or ice packs then steel augers should be your choice.
Steel augers are also more durable and will have a longer lifespan than rubber augers.
They aren’t susceptible to salt and oil either, which can degrade rubber augers.
Steel Augers: What Is Not So Good?
The main problem with steel augers is the fact they can cause more damage if they accidentally come into contact with a hard surface.
If you have a gravel drive, this could be a particular problem
They are also much noisier when they scrape against the pavement in comparison to rubber augers.
Steel augers are more expensive too.
That said they do have a longer lifespan than rubber augers, so you could end up spending less in the long run, unless you accidentally damage your steel auger…
Rubber Augers: What Is Good?
The good news is that whilst rubber augers might not quite have the power of steel augers, they still perform well.
They should, for the most part, still do a good job of clearing snow most of the time, unless it is very heavy and ice packed.
They are much cheaper too, so if you need to replace them it won’t be as much as a strain on the bank balance.
Rubber augers are obviously much gentler on pavements and brick, as they contour to the surface and absorb any shock should you accidentally hit a hard surface.
You don’t have to worry as much about scratching either surface, the auger or the pavement.
Rubber Augers: What Is Not So Good?
As reliable as rubber augers are, there is no question they will not be as effective at clearing hard-packed snow.
In these scenarios steel augers win out.
The rubber is likely to wear more quickly, so even though rubber augers are cheaper you are going to have to replace them more often
So Who Are EGO?
As mentioned it is the American brand EGO that makes single-stage snow blowers that offer the buyer a choice of rubber or steel augers.
They were only founded in 1993, and didn’t enter the American market until 2012, but they have pretty quickly developed a reputation for well-made, reliable and battery-powered power tools.
They are now a big player in the lawn mower, hedge-trimmer, chainsaw, snow blower and leaf blower markets.
They have taken battery-powered power tools to a new level and evidently have spent a lot of time testing and trialing their battery technology.
Whilst it might not be the ultimate measure of the quality of a product, if you look at any EGO product on Amazon, you will see they universally have very good reviews.
The defining aspect of your choice between a steel and rubber auger for your snow blower should be the amount and type of snow you expect it to have to deal with.
If you get long winters with lots of heavy snowfall and very cold temperatures, then the steel auger is what you will want to go for.
It is much better at dealing with heavy, packed snow.
If you need a snow blower to deal with lighter, fluffier snow then a rubber auger will be just fine.
Generally the choice will be made for you as single-stage blowers tend to have rubber augers, whilst two-stage snow blowers have steel augers.
However if you are thinking about buying an EGO single stage snow blower then that is when you will have a decision to make!