Arguably the king of the hill, the Honda 32” 2-stage track drive snow blower is undeniably impressive, and I’m delighted to be reviewing this awesome machine.
These days, there’s a big debate surrounding electric vs gas-powered snow blowers. Modern battery technology and improvements in the brushless electric motor for power equipment have given cordless electric snow blowers a distinct advantage.
Despite all the benefits of battery-powered snow blowers, there are many instances where a good old gas engine is the only viable option. Clearing thick snow from a large area simply isn’t practical using an electric snow blower.
I know gas engines are cumbersome and the trend for clean electric power is winning the day, but there are many folks who still depend on gas snow blowers, especially ranchers and those with larger-than-average yards.
Gas engines can be expensive to maintain, especially after years of hard work. To avoid hassles and prohibitive maintenance costs in the future, it is imperative to carefully consider what kind of quality you’re paying for when buying a gas-powered snow blower.
The Honda snow blower is expensive, very expensive. At a retail price north of four grand, you may need to reach for your blood pressure pills before your credit card. While this price may seem prohibitive, the Honda 32” 2-stage snow blower is incredibly popular.
The Honda brand is synonymous with outstanding quality, unbeatable durability, and a longstanding reputation for extraordinary customer service. Let’s face it, a gas-powered 32-inch snow blower is never cheap. I guess the many Honda customers realize that, when buying an item like this, it’s better to bite the bullet and pay a little extra for top quality to avoid unwanted costs and headaches down the line.
I’m definitely one of those who feel that the Honda HSS1332ATD is a worthwhile investment. You really can’t go wrong with a Honda machine. This review should help you decide if it’s worth the high price tag.
Honda HSS1332ATD Review
Specs & Features:
- 389cc, 11.7 HP engine.
- DC Electric starter, no need to plug into an AC outlet.
- Recoil backup starter.
- Throwing distance: 56 Ft.
- Maximum discharge capacity: 2750 LBS per minute.
- Clearing width: 31.9”.
- Clearing height: 21.7”
- Chute turning radius: 198°.
- Track drive provides the best traction.
- 5-gallon gas tank.
- Auger height control.
- Hydrostatic transmission.
- Electric joystick chute control.
- Ergonomic dashboard.
- Offset shear bolts protect the auger from damage.
- Pneumatic gas strut for accurate auger housing adjustment.
- Hour meter.
- Bright LED light.
- Gas consumption: 0.92 gallons per hour.
- Weight: 276 LBS
- Warranty: 3 years. (12-month commercial warranty).
The Honda HSS1332ATD can be considered the tank of the snow blower world. With its track drive system and never-say-die 389cc engine, this is an unstoppable beast. Even the harshest Alaska winter is no challenge for the Honda 32” stage track drive snow blower.
Honda GX390 Engine
The primary reason why most folks choose Honda power equipment has to be their incredible engines. The GSX 390, powering the Honda HSS1332ATD, may not be the most advanced Honda engine, but it’s certainly as tough as any to hail from the brand and is wonderfully fuel efficient.
While some of the top Honda engines boast electronic fuel injection, this model still utilizes a carburetor. As a result, it is not the best when it comes to fuel efficiency. That’s when comparing the GSX390 to more advanced Honda engines. If we’re going to do an apples-with-apples comparison, the Honda 32” snow blower is way more fuel-efficient than its competitors.
At 9.2 gallons per hour, this is not a thirsty machine. Especially when you consider that the GSX390 has some mighty impressive power specs – 11.7 HP at 3,600 RPM and 19.5 Ft LBS of torque. This gives the insatiable Honda snow blower the ability to move 2,750 pounds of snow per minute and throw it up to 56 Ft from the chute.
Engine reliability and performance is a result of many years of research and development, something Honda is renowned for. The CDI electronic ignition system is incredible. It’s ultimately reliable and provides perfect, variable ignition timing.
The engine is built as solid as they come, with a cast iron cylinder sleeve, OHV, and a precision forged steel camshaft. The engine is incredibly smooth, thanks to ball bearing support for the camshaft, a heavy-duty balancer shaft, and a great piston design.
Like any Honda engine, the GSX390 meets, or exceeds all modern emission standards. It is both CARB and EPA Compliant.
Track Drive System
A track drive snow blower is the best solution when you need extra traction. The large surface area of the track means it won’t bog down in heavy snow and it is much better on a slope.
Honda, as one would expect, has put a lot of effort into designing an exceptional track drive, that is both incredibly durable and has about the best performance in all types of conditions.
The dual track system features pliable low-temperature rubber tracks with an interlocking sure-grip cleat pattern.
A unique, and very useful feature is the height-adjustable auger. A lever operates a gas strut which allows you to effortlessly adjust the height of the auger.
On a gravel surface, you can raise the auger to avoid damage. If you’re clearing a paved driveway, you can lower the auger to clear snow right down to the surface. The height adjustment, in conjunction with the track drive system, also gives you a great advantage when negotiating large snow drifts, negating the tendency to climb over the snow instead of scraping it.
This is a high-quality serrated steel auger with a bearing supporting the shaft.
The Honda 2-stage snow blower has a comprehensive dashboard with easy-to-use controls at your fingertips.
It has an electric joystick to rotate the chute on the move. The hydrostatic drive is controlled by a lever that offers infinite speed control with positions for forward, neutral, and reverse.
Steering levers on the grips are ergonomically designed and offer direction control even when the engine is off.
Starting the Honda 32-inch track drive snow blower is a synch. A key-operated electric starter means that you can get up and running in an instant. No need to use an extension cord. It also has a backup recoil starter, and the choke lever is conveniently positioned on the dashboard.
A powerful LED light is great for those short, dark winter days and it has a digital hour meter to keep track of service intervals.
While even the most critical skeptics should agree that the Honda HSS1332ATD track dive snow blower is a remarkable machine, the elephant in the room has yet to be fully addressed in this review – the price.
There’s no denying it, the Honda 32” track drive snow blower is probably the most expensive of its kind. When you consider that the Torro 38842, which is also a gas-powered 32” 2-stage snow blower with a track-drive option, costs roughly $2,000 less than the Honda, you have to ask whether the Honda HSS1332ATD is worth the price.
Yes, Honda is an expensive brand. In my opinion, it’s the best power equipment manufacturer in the world. There really is no comparison when it comes to durability and reliability. Honda has proven over many decades that their equipment outlasts all others and maintenance costs are relatively low, regardless of how hard you make them work.
The Honda HSS1332ATD also utilizes some very advanced and quite unique technology. It is a fantastic 2-stage snow blower.
I guess, for the average homeowner, the Honda 32” stage snow blower is more expensive than many would like to pay. I believe that the advantages of longevity and hardworking capabilities will pay off in the long run. This might be of greater importance to commercial operators who require an insatiably hardworking machine that doesn’t break down.
In the end, if you can afford it, and won’t settle for anything less than the very best, the Honda HSS1332ATD is the snow blower for you.