What Is a Good CFM for a Leaf Blower? A Guide to Leaf Blower CFM Ratings

What is a good CFM for a leaf blower header

What is a good CFM for a leaf blower? That would depend on a variety of factors. Don’t worry, we’ve got you covered. This is your guide to leaf blower CFM ratings.


What Is CFM?


CFM means cubic feet per minute. It pertains to the volume of air for each minute a tool moves. The measurement is in cubic feet. 

So, in leaf blowers, CFM measures the force of the air the tool produces. 

Look

When it comes to a tool, no matter how fast the speed is, if there is little air volume, it still wouldn’t be as effective. 

CFM vs MPH

When it comes to leaf blowers, you usually get at least two important measures, the CFM and the MPH. The latter means miles per hour. 

MPH refers to how fast the air moves. 

Which is more important?

To be fair, both are important. But when it comes to leaf blowers, the CFM matters more. 

Look at it this way, if manufacturers want a higher MPH, they would have to make the nozzle smaller. But then, that would affect the CFM. 

What happens?

The CFM will decrease. On the other hand, if you have a higher CFM, the MPH is usually lower. 

But you would prefer to have a higher CFM because it is the best measure of the power of the leaf blower. This is about moving leaves and other debris, so you definitely need power. 

Leaf blower and battery

Why Is CFM Important in Leaf Blowers?


As it is named a leaf blower, people might think it’s a simple blowing operation. If that is the case, you might as well just use a stand fan, right? Of course not!

So, it’s not enough that there is air in the tool. There should be power in it, too.

Basically

The CFM tells you how much power there is in the leaf blower. 

To be more specific about it, a leaf blower with 200 CFM will move 200 cubic feet of air through the nozzle of the tool. That is some powerful air that could move debris around. 

Why is it important?

Knowing the CFM will give you an idea of how much material you can move with your leaf blower. 

It will also give you a picture of how much area it can clear over a period of time. 

This way

You will know if a certain leaf blower is appropriate for the size of your yard and the kind of debris that accumulates in your yard.

This means that when you have a higher CFM value, the more air is produced by the leaf blower. 

In essence

You will be able to clear a larger area in a shorter amount of time. 

Man using leaf blower on side walk

What Is a Good CFM for a Leaf Blower?


You already know the basic: the higher the CFM, the more powerful it is. 

However, you have to put it into perspective also. If you don’t need a high-powered CFM, then you don’t need to get that. 

Sometimes, it just depends on your needs. 

Now, let’s get the details:

If you have a small yard, an electric leaf blower will be good enough. You could probably choose between 200 and 400 CFM.

You get the higher CFM if you have a lot of trees in your small yard. 

However

If you have a large yard–about an acre or more–then you should get something with a CFM of from 400 to 700. 

These are really powerful. 

There’s a but…

Leaf blowers this powerful are mostly noisy. 

That’s why we emphasized choosing a leaf blower that is right for your yard. If you have a small yard and you use a leaf blower with a 700 CFM, then your neighbors will be easily irritated with the noise. 

So

Get that type of CFM if you have a large yard because that would also mean that neighbors are not as close. 

These powerful leaf blowers are also great with either wet or dry debris. 

That’s not all!

There are also leaf blowers with a CFM of up to 3,000. 

You read that right! Although, these are not really the handheld leaf blower, these are push blowers mostly used for commercial spaces. 

They are mighty

In fact, they could also move rocks and other heavier objects or debris. They are also gas-powered. 

Just like most gas-powered machines, they are also really noisy. 

Leaf blower with bag attached

Let’s be specific

We have listed the best leaf blowers of the year

The list includes 18 leaf blowers, some are electric-powered, some are battery-powered and others are gas-powered. 

Here’s an overview of some of the leaf blowers on the list and their CFM:

Husqvarna 580BTS

This was our top choice among the gas-powered leaf blowers. It also has the highest CFM among the lineup. 

How high? 908 high! That’s the maximum. 

It is actually the most powerful commercial backpack blower in the market. So, if you have a huge area, this is a top-notch product for you!

WORX Turbine WG520

Surprisingly, following the Husqvarna for highest CFM is not another gas-powered blower. Instead, it’s an electric leaf blower. 

This was our top choice among the electric leaf blowers. It has a maximum 600 CFM. It’s amazing because most electric-powered leaf blowers have a CFM of between 200 and 400. 

Snapper XD SXDBL82

Among the battery-powered leaf blowers, this has the highest CFM with 550. It’s air speed isn’t bad either at 130 mph. 

It’s also quite convenient because it’s battery-powered. You don’t need to battle with a cord. It can operate for 40 minutes straight when the battery is fully charged. 

LEaf blower and batteries

KIMO 20V 2-in-1

Now, just to give you a comparison, this battery-powered leaf blower only has a CFM of 95. 

Look, if you have a small yard and you don’t get a lot of debris, this is actually a good-enough leaf blower. 

It is really small and compact and really light. It’s perfect for small areas and small-ish people. 

Husqvarna 130BT

This is less powerful than the previously mentioned Husqvarna model. This only has a CFM of 374. 

It’s still a powerful blower but without the weight of the 580BTS model. 

WORX WG506

This is another electric leaf blower from WORX. But unlike the earlier mentioned turbine model, this only has a CFM of 160. 

It’s good enough for small yards. 

Dewalt DWBL700

Now, this model has a 409 CFM. It’s also electric. It is more powerful than the WORX WG506 but less powerful than the WORX turbine. 

It comes with three nozzles so you can use the most appropriate one depending on the type of debris that needs clearing. 

Here’s the deal:

Yes, the higher the CFM, the more powerful the leaf blower is. But you can’t just buy something based on CFM. 

You buy a leaf blower that is right for your yard. You have to consider the size of your yard and the debris that the yard collects in a day or in a week. 

Plus

The budget is a major consideration, too. Usually, leaf blowers with high CFM are also pricey. 

Leaf blower viewed from side

Summary


What is a good CFM for a leaf blower? On average, the CFM of regular leaf blowers are between 200 and 400. 

However, battery-operated leaf blowers could go below 100 while gas-powered ones could go beyond 600. And, did you know that some leaf blowers have 3,000 CFM? But that’s more of a push blower. 

The higher the CFM, the more powerful the leaf blower is. But it’s not automatic that you should buy the tool with the highest CFM. You should buy the leaf blower that would be best for your yard, taking into consideration the kind and amount of debris the space gets. 


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Useful Resources

  • Cordless Leaf Blowers vs Backpack Leaf Blowers: Which Is Better? – Chicago Tribune
  • The Next Electric Frontier Is Your Backyard – Bloomberg
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