Rated 4.3 out of 5 by 249
Rated 2.0 out of 5.0 by Bucky Could be great, but seriously flawed. Please read.
I originally purchased an "open box" BP500T from HD for a significant discount. The only blemish on it was a dent on the blow molded backpack structure. The dent was significant, but did not hinder function. I used this blower weekly for about two months. Over time it became more and more difficult to start until finally it would not start at all. A spray of carb cleaner down the venturi and it would start instantly and immediately stall. Dirty carburetor? I removed the carb, disassembled, and cleaned it thoroughly. The blower started again, but not to my satisfaction. I condemned the unit as defective and returned it.
The second PB500T I purchased new. Like the previous one, I only used premium fuel and echo brand premix. Sure enough, the same carburetion issues began to arise. Over the course of about a year, the unit became harder and harder to start. Also, the blower would stall when throttle was applied. A careful application of the choke and throttle at the same time would get me to wide open throttle without stalling, but having to operate a new machine in this manner was unacceptable to me. If it wasn't for the fact that the blower is built very well and ran great when it would run, I would have just returned it and purchased a different brand or model.
The carburetor obviously needed an adjustment. The only problem is: due to EPA regulations, the carburetors on these blowers are "tamper proof". Special tools, that cannot be purchased by any untrained DIYer, are required for adjustment. I was fortunate to get my hands on the tool from a local lawn mower shop. Sure enough, with a little opening of the L and a little more opening of the H made a world of difference. The blower starts well and rolls from idle to wide open throttle without a hiccup.
For those of you who have read this far, unless you can get your hands on the carburetor adjustment tool, I would strongly consider a different blower. I blame the EPA as much as Echo for this design flaw because if Echo didn't have to meet strict emissions requirements, the blowers would come with the carburetors on a richer setting in the first place.
March 31, 2015
Rated 2.0 out of 5.0 by Blownout Dud in longevity
Cylinder block burned out & seized-up in a few months. Echo voided my warrantee based upon not using their recommended 2 cycle mix. Really? Really?! I have used Opti-2 mix for years on all brands of 2 cycle blowers, chainsaws, etc. I never encountered piston seize on a unit in less than a year old. Don't waste your money! Pay the extra $100 & get a Stihl, It will last and out perform. It did run well while it worked.
August 8, 2015
Rated 4.0 out of 5.0 by MaintenanceMan Good quality reasonable price
Easy to use. Has all features we were looking for in a backpack blower
August 10, 2015
Rated 5.0 out of 5.0 by Diesel Echo Back pack leaf blower
The blower has performed exactly as I was told, it handled my leafs easily.
August 4, 2015
Rated 4.0 out of 5.0 by BDinPutnam Perfect if a little heavy
Hands down, this is my favorite power tool purchase of 2013.
Powerful, easy to maintain, when prepped right starts on the first/second pull every time. Positively sips fuel- I fill it twice- MAYBE three times at the most- over the course of several hours on 3+ heavily wooded acres.
The only (minor) cons are:
1. The fuel tank can be a little difficult to fill; I use a funnel and that seems to work just fine.
2. After several hours it WILL make your shoulders hurt.
3. The o-ring on the tube (holds the tube to the unit) needs to be tightend before every use. With that said, I use it for a lot longer at a time than most people probably.
January 14, 2014
Rated 5.0 out of 5.0 by Farje One problem - only wish I had bought one of these years ago.
Have only used three times, but so far absolutely love the unit. I live in the woods so get a lot of leaves and twigs in the yard and driveway, but wet or dry, this unit removed them quickly. Love the capacity of the gas tank.
April 8, 2015
Rated 5.0 out of 5.0 by Tommygun best value in backpack blowers
My reviews are sometimes long
I own several echo items. Most consider them the best in the industry I consider them the best in the industry. They are however a commercial brand the first successful 50:1 power equipment before that 40:1.
The PB-500 is home depot's best buy for only 50 dollars more than the PB-265 you get the next level or entry level professional blower. You get twice the engine, twice the fuel capacity and around 100 cfm more than the PB-265.
Its super quiet very powerful and easy to use.
What you need to know before you buy is because this is a commercial unit extra care must be given or you will be in the same boat as the 1-3 star reviewers. Let me put it another way all power equipment must be given proper care.
Because echo is a strong performer it has tighter tolerances and less tolerance for poor fuel quality extra care must be given for storage. Other non commercial blowers have higher tolerance which also means less performance but more tolerant for poor fuel quality.
I use Echo can fuel VP Husqvarna and Trufuel and I have yet had a single problem. All but one fuel can be found at Home Depot I recommend the VP the best the Trufuel the best value.
I'm not sure the proper recommended storage procedure because I use a quality can fuel for my power equipment I use the least all the time and most used equipment for only winter storage. I do not run the equipment dry and store I have been told they dry and harden pump diaphragms the leading case of carb failure. Next cause of carb failure is bad gas that clogs everything inside and it also destroys fuel lines filters grommets.
Pump fuel is the worst enemy of small engines so use the best mix and stabilizers like ethanol shield as a stabilizer and echo mix all found at Home depot or what I do use which is can fuel. Never and I mean never pour the gas out, store the gas for the winter and then pour it back into any power equipment if you do you'll be writing a one star review yourself blaming others. I have been told once the fuels out it stays out.
I give this model PB-500
5 stars for value
5 stars for performance
5 stars for ease of use
5 stars for a large gas tank and extra runtime
5 stars for the best recommended
Summary best buy in backpack blowers will last for years if proper care is given.
I use a commercial blower like the PB-500 because I have better thing to do with my time.
Cuts my time by over 50% over other lesser brands and models.
use premix fuel if you are not using it often: untreated 14 days and your pump fuel is turning bad 30 days and your developing issues, 30-90 days you have reduced not only the performance but now you will need repairs and 6 months you will need a carburetor and be writing a poor review is my guess.
December 14, 2014
Rated 5.0 out of 5.0 by cstevens Top of the Line Blower
This new blower unit has a lot of POWER! Plus you look cool wearing it. It will move wet grass/leaves with ease. Fun to get on roof and blow out gutters (BE CAREFUL) with the long arm it has. Very comfortable to wear for long periods. A little hard to see gas tank on this model, it's sort of hidden in between the back plate and motor. Other models have it on the bottom. Not a big deal. I think it gets pretty good gas usage for its size. On all my new equipment, I use the premix oil&gas power fuel (forgot name brand). Comes in 1qt bottle and has NO ethanol, which kills engines. Expensive but great for small engines (i.e. blower, trimmer, chainsaw) that don't use a lot of gas. Home Depot carries it. Comes in 1:40 & 1:50 ratios.
August 8, 2013