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Hip-Mount or Tube-Mount Throttle? Which Should You Choose?

A leaf blower has become a ubiquitous tool used by professional landscapers and homeowners alike. Far more efficient over a rake or a broom, a powered blower makes quick work of leaf clean up on your yard or patio and clearing grass clippings from your driveway or sidewalk.

Today’s backpack leaf blower is a concept borrowed from agricultural duster/mister technology in the 1950’s that evolved during the early 1970’s as users slowly removed the chemical distribution portion of those products to simply blow air.

ECHO was the first to introduce an engine-powered backpack duster/mister in 1950 and introduced the popular DM-9 in 1955. This initial design advanced to become the PB-9 in 1971 – the first commercially available backpack blower – and helped spread the popularity of leaf blowers. Incidentally, in 1978, ECHO introduced the first handheld blower: the PB-200.

There are two varieties of backpack blowers used by both commercial landscapers and homeowners – hip-mounted throttle control and tube-mounted throttle control. Many manufacturers offer both configurations using the same engine displacement. The two configurations have no impact on the blower’s performance – the air speed and air volume specifications are the same for both. So which one do you choose?

Actually, the choice between the two really comes down to personal preference. There are just about as many advocates of the hip-mounted throttle as there are tube-mounted. Many users like the convenience of having one hand free while operating the blower with their right-hand on a tube-mounted throttle. Conversely, others like to use the throttle “cruise control” on hip-mounted versions to free their left hand. NOTE: many manufacturers today also have a “cruise” feature on their tube-mounted throttles as well.

Your best bet for choosing between the two is to visit your local dealer and try both; then choose whichever suits you and get those leaves cleared.