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This is a topic that's been on my mind for some time - approaching a total property/yard maintenance solution. The time has most certainly come for a riding lawn mower at minimum, and I've oft dreamed of the tractor/snowthrower/mower/leaf collector combination as a way to do this, if I could get it all set up as a package meant to "play well" with each other.

It was suggested on another forum (that is before being told by some that such a solution that didn't incorporate a horizontal shaft drive on the tractor for 25K total package price or more wasn't really worth persuing) that a JD X300 or X500 series package could well be a solution at a lower price point.

I've been researching the lawn tractor topic for some weeks (approaching months) now, and one thing I've gathered is that if I do want a "longer lasting" solution that I need to pay attention to the powertrain - engine and transmission in particular, which is what seems to separate the big-box from the dealer purchased to the highest end "horizontal shaft drive" specialized stuff. Lots of machines look brawny but aren't so stout in the mechanics, particularly in the category of "lawn tractor/mowers".

As I'm sure most here can attest, it seems there's no "free ride", in the sense that if I want a stout transmission as an example, I'm going to have to pay for it. Particularly if I intend to move or push snow, or tow carts, or have a leaf/lawn waste bagging system that's strong enough to consistently work/do the job properly without wearing it out in three to five years.

I've looked at a number of zero turns, and now turning my attention to lawn tractors, and it seems that if I do "zero turn" that I'm buying a lawn mower only (with a leaf collection add on possible) but certainly no snowthrower, which would be a separate item. I could certainly invest in a good two stage machine to handle the paved driveway and adjacent walks, so that could be a solution, but was pointed to a JD X500 series setup that would offer a stouter, nearing or being an entry level commercial grade transmission in the K72. Entry level price (X570) at about 6K, seeming to be comparable to the Hydro-Gear 3100 or 3400 that would be similarly stout (and also serviceable) in zero turn "comparables" in that "entry level commercial" area of their lineups. So in buying an X500 series JD, it seems that I'm only gaining the option to have the add on snowblower and "made for the machine" leaf collection setup, which is VERY appealing.

Put another way, we discussed going with a Zero Turn Scag, Bobcat, or JD in the 5-6K range, separate two stage snowthrower, and buying a "made for" or outboard leaf collection system (like a DR leaf vac setup that attaches to your mower setup, which has it's own engine for the vac). OR I could just get an all JD setup, with snowthrower, leaf collection setup and mower, all in one package, all made to work with each other.

Adding to the ease of going JD, I've been approved for sufficient financing to allow an X500 series package to be paid for by way of a 4.9% 48 month payment term, which is very attractive and a reasonable way to get ALL of the necessary equipment to complete the package in one easy payment setup, and all new gear to boot. Now I wouldn't have bothered applying for that financing if I didn't first think that JD had a reasonable shot at being the "chosen solution", at least in part, having been sufficiently impressed with the offerings in equipment, and especially the X500 series, to make the application to take advantage of the current financing offers.


So with that said, I want to pick apart the X500 series, much of which I have read about on this site already, and see what choices within that series would be right for me - or not.

The property: 1 triple-lot, 3/4 acre space with a 125 foot paved driveway and 200+ foot adjoining sidewalk, which I often find myself servicing as two of my four neighbors are elderly and not so much up to the task. So the snow removal "brawn" would be a big help. The driveway concrete downslopes on the last third, so I would be curious as to how well the 44 or 47 inch blowers would handle the "dropoff from level" that the driveway brings as I would go down the slope (I figure going down away from the house toward the street is easier on the tractor or blower, too). But in addition, and even more importantly, the property resides in a valley, surrounded by trees, which forms a "bowl" where the surrounding density of trees deposit large quantities of leaves onto the lawn. LOTS of them. So I need a setup that will allow me to vac on a weekly basis for four or so weeks out of the year to keep up with them, and to prevent them from being covered by the snow. We've used the largest leaf blowers we can buy or borrow and it all seems overwhelming. A tractor leaf collector setup would be really welcome, I think.

So with all of that learned from reading, I was off to the local JD dealer this weekend, and was shown the X500 series by the salesperson. He brought up the differences in the X500 models, quoting my $5999 for the X570, $6999 for the X580, which seem the two primary machines of interest, with the main difference being the power steering and hydraulic lift. In particular, as it related to the snowthrower, the idea was posited that in five or seven years that I would be happier not pushing on the manual lift (I am early 50's now, which drives my want for this kit as I'm tiring of the physical workout of doing this as I have until now) if I had the hydraulic lifting on the snowthrower. He also seemed to push the idea of pairing the 47" snowthrower with the X580 (or even the 590), as the 47" snowthrower is 125 lbs heavier than the 44".

So now I have a "double dilemma":

1) By purchasing the 580 or 590 with power steering and hydraulic lift, am I introducing complexity into the machine that would be a service headache later in ownership, or are these systems proven reliable? There seems a lot of merit to the simplicity of the manual lift being reliable, and as one who buys his cars with minimal options that I don't perceive necessary save on future repairs. OR.....

2) If I went with the X580/590, I still see a lot of merit in the 44" as it IS 125 lbs lighter according to the dealer, so I would have an easier time mounting it up at season start - or are there OTHER reasons I should spend the $200 extra for the 47", given that it's only $200 more on an $11K package? If I have the hydraulic lift the 125 lbs is less of a concern when on the tractor, and if there's other "merits" to the 47", like serviceability (I didn't ask if the pulleys had grease nipples on either one, but if one did and the other didn't, that might matter here) as well as having a bigger auger other than just width? I saw the 44" but they didn't have a 47" out and visible, although they DID have it in stock, but I didn't get a look see, and the salesperson didn't really seem to know aside from the fact that "the mouth was deeper and wider".

3) OR if I should just get a separate two stage and save the $600-800.


Leaf collection: There exists two options I'm aware of for the X500 series - the 7 bushel, two removable bag kit ($1200 inclusive), and the 14 bushel three removable bag kit ($1700 inclusive). From a couple YouTube vids these seem effective and "operable", finding no complaints as to their lack of effectiveness to do the job - and effectiveness IS really important as I don't want to spend the $$$ and find out that it's underpowered. But those aforementioned vids even mention collecting when the leaves were moist/"dew-ey" so that seems something of an added endorsement. Given the leaf volume the 14bu seems a MUST, as the volume of leaves we get here are substantial, and I'm not buying one of these kits to fall short of the job - and the extra $500 seems well worth it in the context of the overall cost, and the need for robust leaf collection this property presents.


Then we looked at a few accessories: The front cage guard for the X500 (seems sensible/protective as well as looking good) that would be used for all but snowthrower time, chains for snow season, and four weights for the rear or front depending on snow or leaf removal season. Which reminds me - that I guess the 570 doesn't have the spot for the front weights stock, I have to buy that?? So if I went 570 I guess I would be buying that mount for leaf season? Or is the weight of the 24hp Kawasaki enough to counter that with a 14bu leaf setup on the rear? But those accessories seemed to be the basic required package if I bought the setup with the required trimmings......


Deck size seemed to be 48" as a pretty firm idea, not just for easier parking and storage but I read here that it cuts really well. And YES, they did offer to do a 48" with the 580, as I read some here had issues with getting that through their dealer?? I am traditionally a "mulcher" and read here that sometimes special blades are better or optimal for that? Not sure how the mulch kits would play out in practice, and was a topic I didn't get to with the salesperson, which brings me to.......


The dealer. Having been my first visit to a local John Deere dealer (short of a few parts purchases for an old TRS21 snowthrower some years ago, which they did have parts for) I was less than impressed with the visit. While the salesperson DID explain the basic option upgrades on the X500 series he did so with half of his attention literally focused someplace across the shop, with seemingly an attitude that if he didn't sell it to me someone else would buy it (and that after telling him I had a JD finance approval sufficient to buy an entire package). I've been in the sales/service business my whole life and know "don't give much a bleep" or relative disinterest when I see it. And this before ANY discussion of price came up - it just seemed if this was the interest level of selling an 11K package now, what would be the interest of service after the sale?? And this taking place figuratively and literally in the shadow of their World Headquarters, which has me (and moreover, my wife, who insists if I do buy that I do so at another dealer, even if it's JD) a bit perplexed and feeling unsure - at least about THIS dealer. There are two others within 30 miles of here, just out of town, so more visits there are in the cards, if for no other reason to try to feel out for who is going to take care of me AFTER the sale. Still yet, I wouldn't use it (yet) as a reason not to buy the brand, as from what I've read and researched it seems that I AM looking at good equipment at the price point and for the purpose. It has that "universality" too in that it's not a rare brand, always good in the aftermarket/leter years of ownership too.

Because it IS pertinent, the prices offered if buying the package:

X570 $5999
X580 $6999
X590 $7799

44" snowthrower $1600
47" snowthrower $1800

7bu two bag kit $1200
14bu three bag kit $1700

Chains, four weights, front grill guard $450 total


It does seem that deals are not given easily (although there's a little money off here, but not much) but I'm not really focused as much on "The Deal" right now as getting the right product for me as well as the right dealer. But especially for purposes of this post, getting the right combination of product and to focus the lens as to the issues/questions that I have, particularly before I sign for 11K worth of product. I am definitely asking myself if I should get the X570 or 580, and if I should get the attached or separate stand alone snowthrower as primary questions, and the aforementioned specifics on the associated attachments - and if something is NOT recommended or inadequate or mismatched in your experience.


Any help/focus would be welcome. Thanks very much in advance.
 

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You have put a ton of thought an research into your potential purchase.

I'll save you the you should get an x7 at 0% nonsense.

An x5 will do everything you want and make you happy on your size lot and then some.

My only advice after reading all that is get the hydraulics. JD has been using hydraulics for these functions for decades and many tens of thousands of machines. Nobody ever complains about having them. Nobody ever complains about them breaking. Power steering and power lift are worth every single penny when it comes to making your machine useful.

See it for yourself and test drive them both, ask a dealer to mount a deck or if you can a snowblower to see just how much better the power lift option is.

The x580 is a great choice.

The x590 is a better choice for cold weather and fuel economy with the EFI engine.
 

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I have a similar size lot and driveway as you, and about same age. I went through most of what you are thinking right now. I went with X590 - a big advantage of getting all the accessories with your tractor, when you purchase with tractor you get the same 4 year warranty on all the accessories. To address some of your concerns, the hydraulic power steering is pretty much bullet proof, been around a long time. Same with hydraulic lift. Hydraulics is much smoother, quicker and more reliable than electric power steering and lift offered by some brands. Power steering on a tractor, is something you don’t know you need till you get it. Once you have it, you’ll never own a tractor without it again. Hydraulic lift isn’t a big thing if you are just mowing, but for snow blowing where you are lifting snow blower up and down it’s very, very nice to have. Either the 44 or 47 inch will work for you. I went with 47 because it’s made a bit stouter- only reason I can see going 44” is if you go with X570 ( and no hydraulic lift) I bought a small dolly from Harbor freight for like 10 bucks and store Snow blower on that, when time comes I just drive up to blower on dolly and snap it in, takes me all of 5/10 min and it’s a one man operation. I’m on my 4th year with X590 47 inch blower combo and they have both been flawless for me. I live in upstate NY and we get heavy snow, I’ve been able to snow blow 26 inch storm in single pass , can easily go thru 3 feet high snow ice piles left at end of driveway by county plow

Main difference between X580/590 is EFI, which I like in the winter, no choke, turn of a key and my 590 fires up first time every time. I keep my X590 unheated garage so I like the easy starting in winter. As added advantage you get 1.5 extra HP and about 25% better fuel consumption with the EFI engine( also get upgraded seat and tilt steering wheel ) In addition to EFi you get constant speed governor – with is very nice for snow blowing, as it’s almost impossible to bog engine down – both the X580 and X590 are outstanding and either will easily do the job for you- it’s up to you to decide if the X590 is worth the extra few bucks- it was worth it for me and I continue to be happy with my choice

As for leaf pickup—afraid I cant help you much there, I just mulch my leaves, with my X590 and then when leaves are coming down heavy use wife’s X310 with bagger to pick up the leaves after I mulch them
 

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You will want the extra weight of the 47 blower if you’re clearing sidewalks.

Power steering and hydraulic lift really make the tractor and don’t effect longevity.

Spending your money the efi it’s a no brainer, spending mine if I had it I probably would too, but you will probably be just as happy with a carb. Using it year round eliminates many issues that revolve around storage. The easier starting and mixtures adjusting to temp are the biggest differences you’ll see as a user.
 

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One other thing I should add, I went with Terra grip rubber chains- they work well for me and don’t scratch the driveway at all. Not sure what part of country and how much snow you get- But I’ve tried snow blowing with and without terra grips. To tell you the truth no chains works fine in small snowfall amounts ( less than 6 inches) any more than that and I found myself slipping and sliding much more and had to use Diff lock quite a bit. With Chains I seldom use it, but enjoy the added security diff lock gives me.


And if you don’t already have enough to think about if you are in heavy snow area, consider some sort of cab/snow enclosure. I went with John Deere snow enclosure and its works well for me, keeps snow and wind off me, I don’t come in from snow blowing looking like abominable snowman. Keeps me fairly warm
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Thank you all for ALL of this.

Good to know that the hydraulics/power steering are reliable. I love the convenience of it and the idea of the lift for the snowthrower is HUGE if I get the 47 in particular. The extra brawn for 2 hundo on the 47 vs. the 44 seems a no-brainer if I get the 580 or 590 which has the hydraulics.

I did see some complaints in some earlier (say 2015) posts about the belt driven snowthrowers but now also see that JD has addressed this in newer builds and service updates. That's good to see and instills some confidence. I also didn't know that purchasing the extra attachments makes them warrantied for as long as the tractor. That's VERY good to know, and reinforces the idea of doing all of this as a package.

There seems no shortage of happy 590 or even X500 series owners here which seems to indicate that it's enough tractor for my purposes. Reliability of service is important, I tend to like a "liitle overbuilt for the use" to ensure it's enough for what I need it for. If it's more than I need it for it will be :) And yes, I have researched a BUNCH but after a time that stuff does tend to become a big bowl of jello and therefore the "focus" from those experienced is in order.

I'm really curious about the collection kit as that might be the most important add-on of all. I could always get a separate snowthrower to do the duty but the leaf collector is another animal entirely. I'll probably still get a separate snowthrower for those tighter spots the Deere can't really reach (Toro makes a really impressive single stage "Snowmaster" I can get locally at a blowout/out of season price and I'm thinking of buying it anyway because it's such a good deal and it will be useful for lighter duty and tight areas) but after the recent winters I really want a bigger dog for the hunt.

Thanks again and keep 'em coming!
 

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Discussion Starter #7
One other thing I should add, I went with Terra grip rubber chains- they work well for me and don’t scratch the driveway at all. Not sure what part of country and how much snow you get- But I’ve tried snow blowing with and without terra grips. To tell you the truth no chains works fine in small snowfall amounts ( less than 6 inches) any more than that and I found myself slipping and sliding much more and had to use Diff lock quite a bit. With Chains I seldom use it, but enjoy the added security diff lock gives me.


And if you don’t already have enough to think about if you are in heavy snow area, consider some sort of cab/snow enclosure. I went with John Deere snow enclosure and its works well for me, keeps snow and wind off me, I don’t come in from snow blowing looking like abominable snowman. Keeps me fairly warm

Your point on chains is welcome. I'm spending over 10K on a brand new paved concrete driveway and don't want metal chains trashing it. Are these JD or aftermarket?

I'm also drooling over that cab enclosure. My wife pointed that one out :)
 

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Your point on chains is welcome. I'm spending over 10K on a brand new paved concrete driveway and don't want metal chains trashing it. Are these JD or aftermarket?

I'm also drooling over that cab enclosure. My wife pointed that one out :)
I bought my Terra grips thru my JD dealer- but you can buy them anywhere - new driveway they are definitely worth the investment

TerraGrips - YouTube

The 47 inch snowblower throws a tremendous amount of snow and will do your driveway rather quickly , I went with Soft cab its cost about 500 bucks


John Deere Custom Enclosure for the X Series of Lawn Tractors - YouTube

You can go with a more heavy duty cab from OTC

Original Tractor Cab Hard Top Cab Enclosure For 2016 X500 Series
 

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I wouldn’t hesitate on an x5. I have x540 w/54” deck. Liquid cooled with a carb and have been beyond happy with it. I would have rather had efi but they didn’t offer it when I bought it. EFI is the only thing I wish it had. It doesn’t start hard or anything but I can’t throw my wife or mother in law on it without getting it running for them lol. I can mow at full speed even when the grass is a little taller than it should be I don’t have any trouble power wise. I also have the diff lock (which I assume they carried over to the next gen x5) and the Carlisle all tracks and can mow a pretty steep slope by my house.

As for snowblowers. Get the bigger one. Say you get out late to snow blow and make a pass get stuck or bogged down and try and back up. You don’t have much room for error backing up if you get off track. Also a lot of times the snow will roll around the sides on a narrow blower and you then run over the spillage and now you made hard pack. Which kinda defeats the purpose lol.

As for the bagger the powerflow is awesome IMO. I haven’t had to rake leaves since!!!


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Buy the hydraulic lift, You won't regret it.

Buy the 47" two stage snow thrower, its a very proven and stout machine (I have had one for over 20 years and very few issues, no issues when you sibtract the self inflicted issues)

Buy the Electronic Fuel Injection

I use Terra Grips and they work well for all but glare ice. Steel chains scratch the concrete and leave rust marks. I was just somewhere and I was shocked at the amount of damage to the sidewalks from the steel tire chains. I can't recall where it was, but it was the worst I have ever seen...........now I recall, it was the downtown sidewalks, which they use steel tire chains on the machine clearing the sidewalks and the amount of rusty scars on the concrete was shocking. It looks terrible and largely is permanent damage..

The heavier the machine, the better the machine will perform in wet snow.

If your dealer is indifferent, check with another dealer if there is one in the area. Also, many machines sell with some discount off of the retail price. At a minimum, additional things are thrown in on the deal.

If you are going to use a blower, you will want some type of enclosure eventually. The rule is no matter what direction the wind blows from, and no matter what direction you are aimed to throw snow, it will hit you in the face. Bet on it. Snow in the face makes the entire process much less fun, very quickly.

As far as leaf collection. First issue is where do dispose of the leaves and clippings? If you have to bag them to be picked up at the curb, then you need to be able to put the bags into the leaf collection system, which is pain. If you have a compost pile or place to dump the leaves and clippings, then go with the Material Collection cart type arrangement which I think uses the Click N Go system with the tractor.

NEVER buy any leaf collection system which you tow behind the mower on its own trailer or unit. They are tricky to back up and they take up a ton of space to store. Also, stick with everything John Deere in brand as getting parts and service down the road is a very big deal.

Anytime you can have a shaft driven implement over a belt driven implement, BUY IT. More dependable, less of a headache and performs with the greatest torque and less "belt slipping".

Always go with Power Steering and Power Lift. No question. Not only will you like it, others in your family can use the machine.

One of my neighbors has a X5xx with the snow blower and mower deck. He pays me to mow his lawn and clear his driveway as he has had knee issues and the tractor lift it too hard on his knees.

Plus , he found out about the snow in the face and he said "I have watched you plow and blow snow for years. I always thought it looked like fun. But the first time you get a face fill of snow when its 0 degrees and the wind is blowing 30mph, the fun went right out of it for me."

One of the reasons why my neighbor has me mow as his x5xx with the 48" deck, he said it takes him about 3 hours to mow and trim everything. I can mow it and cross cut it in about 55 minutes with my commercial zero turn. He has decided he would rather pay me to mow than continuing to do it himself.

Make sure to get a rear weight bracket and about 6 of the suitcase weights which are 42# each. You will need them for the ballast for the blower.

If you are going to get the blower, I would also buy the snow blade with the rubber squeegee edge. they use the same tractor mounting system which you are already buying, so get the blade for snow removal diversification. Its each to swap back and forth between the blade and the blower if you have the quick hitch angling cylinder for the blade, you have the best of both worlds.

These are largely very dependable and well built machines. If you take care of it, it will take care of you.
 

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but I can’t throw my wife or mother in law on it without getting it running for them lol. I can mow at full speed even when the grass is a little taller than it should be I don’t have any trouble power wise.
At first, I read that to say you couldn't throw your mother in law in front of the machine at full speed........nd I thought to myself, "Now, there's an idea".....:laugh::lol:
 

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At first, I read that to say you couldn't throw your mother in law in front of the machine at full speed........nd I thought to myself, "Now, there's an idea".....:laugh::lol:
Hahaha some days...


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I'll probably still get a separate snowthrower for those tighter spots the Deere can't really reach (Toro makes a really impressive single stage "Snowmaster" I can get locally at a blowout/out of season price and I'm thinking of buying it anyway because it's such a good deal and it will be useful for lighter duty and tight areas) but after the recent winters I really want a bigger dog for the hunt.

Thanks again and keep 'em coming!
To be honest, unless you have steps to deal with or areas where the 47" snow thrower just won't fit, you will be amazed at how proficient you will become over time using the machine. You will likely have less need than you think once you get the operation down really well. I carry a snow shovel on the back of my tractors and use it for a couple of steps and the garage door overhead door corners. I just throw the snow out where I can get to it with the plow and its all handled and gone in less time than it took me to type about it.

What you want to do is get so you have very little need for something small. I do carry a Honda snow blower on the back of my tractor and for years, I carried a small, two stroke Toro snow blower for tight areas. It was great, but the mice built a nest under the shroud and I didn't notice the nest and the engine overheated and damaged the piston rings..........the machine is no longer made and it's history.

But the point is I would use the tractor and snowblower FIRST before buying another snow blower. You are likely to find you don't need one.
 

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I own an X580, and living in the northeast would make you think I should have gone with the X590. Wrong! No problems starting at -20 this past winter with anything I own. That being said, X580 or X590 would work wonders for you. And, unless you need an FEL or 3 point hitch you'll not be at a loss for attachments. My suggestion for what it's worth would be the X580 w/ 48" deck, 48" blade, and integral power sleeve hitch. For extras get a pair of Terra Grips for the rear and at least 4ea. suitcase weights. Have fun and good luck.
 

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Couple of thoughts for you:

1. John Deere makes three snowblower series, the 44" manual lift/belt driven, 47 hydraulic lift/belt driven, and 47/54 shaft driven units. You are comparing the 44 and the 47 belt driven. The gearboxes on the 47 belt are heavier duty, the housing is better, and im pretty positive the impeller is larger. I would opt for the 47 over the 44 EVERY SINGLE TIME. I owned on run on an x530 and sold it to my brother, it has been trouble free. My only recommendation would be to disassemble and never-seize the impeller shaft before it rusts on.

2. Of the three x5 tractors the x590 will be best for you because of the significant snow removal task you have. It will start and run better than the carbed x580. I would not worry about the power steering or lift as they are simple robust systems.

3. Your dealer is wrong about the material collection systems. JD also offers a 519 cart that is very handy if you have a lot of leaves or significant acres to clear. I would not even waste my time with the 7 bushel system. It will fill very fast in the fall and you will hate it. It wont jack knife and is very quick to unload.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Buy the hydraulic lift, You won't regret it.

Buy the 47" two stage snow thrower, its a very proven and stout machine (I have had one for over 20 years and very few issues, no issues when you sibtract the self inflicted issues)

Buy the Electronic Fuel Injection

I use Terra Grips and they work well for all but glare ice. Steel chains scratch the concrete and leave rust marks. I was just somewhere and I was shocked at the amount of damage to the sidewalks from the steel tire chains. I can't recall where it was, but it was the worst I have ever seen...........now I recall, it was the downtown sidewalks, which they use steel tire chains on the machine clearing the sidewalks and the amount of rusty scars on the concrete was shocking. It looks terrible and largely is permanent damage..

The heavier the machine, the better the machine will perform in wet snow.

If your dealer is indifferent, check with another dealer if there is one in the area. Also, many machines sell with some discount off of the retail price. At a minimum, additional things are thrown in on the deal.

If you are going to use a blower, you will want some type of enclosure eventually. The rule is no matter what direction the wind blows from, and no matter what direction you are aimed to throw snow, it will hit you in the face. Bet on it. Snow in the face makes the entire process much less fun, very quickly.

As far as leaf collection. First issue is where do dispose of the leaves and clippings? If you have to bag them to be picked up at the curb, then you need to be able to put the bags into the leaf collection system, which is pain. If you have a compost pile or place to dump the leaves and clippings, then go with the Material Collection cart type arrangement which I think uses the Click N Go system with the tractor.

NEVER buy any leaf collection system which you tow behind the mower on its own trailer or unit. They are tricky to back up and they take up a ton of space to store. Also, stick with everything John Deere in brand as getting parts and service down the road is a very big deal.

Anytime you can have a shaft driven implement over a belt driven implement, BUY IT. More dependable, less of a headache and performs with the greatest torque and less "belt slipping".


Always go with Power Steering and Power Lift. No question. Not only will you like it, others in your family can use the machine.

One of my neighbors has a X5xx with the snow blower and mower deck. He pays me to mow his lawn and clear his driveway as he has had knee issues and the tractor lift it too hard on his knees.

Plus , he found out about the snow in the face and he said "I have watched you plow and blow snow for years. I always thought it looked like fun. But the first time you get a face fill of snow when its 0 degrees and the wind is blowing 30mph, the fun went right out of it for me."

One of the reasons why my neighbor has me mow as his x5xx with the 48" deck, he said it takes him about 3 hours to mow and trim everything. I can mow it and cross cut it in about 55 minutes with my commercial zero turn. He has decided he would rather pay me to mow than continuing to do it himself.

Make sure to get a rear weight bracket and about 6 of the suitcase weights which are 42# each. You will need them for the ballast for the blower.

If you are going to get the blower, I would also buy the snow blade with the rubber squeegee edge. they use the same tractor mounting system which you are already buying, so get the blade for snow removal diversification. Its each to swap back and forth between the blade and the blower if you have the quick hitch angling cylinder for the blade, you have the best of both worlds.

These are largely very dependable and well built machines. If you take care of it, it will take care of you.


I noted your comment in bold: Isn't most implements attached to the 500 series belt driven though? Your other points make complete sense but I wanted to clarify this here. Would love to afford something that would accommodate this point but seems the 500 series stuff is belt and pulley setups....
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Couple of thoughts for you:

1. John Deere makes three snowblower series, the 44" manual lift/belt driven, 47 hydraulic lift/belt driven, and 47/54 shaft driven units. You are comparing the 44 and the 47 belt driven. The gearboxes on the 47 belt are heavier duty, the housing is better, and im pretty positive the impeller is larger. I would opt for the 47 over the 44 EVERY SINGLE TIME. I owned on run on an x530 and sold it to my brother, it has been trouble free. My only recommendation would be to disassemble and never-seize the impeller shaft before it rusts on.

2. Of the three x5 tractors the x590 will be best for you because of the significant snow removal task you have. It will start and run better than the carbed x580. I would not worry about the power steering or lift as they are simple robust systems.

3. Your dealer is wrong about the material collection systems. JD also offers a 519 cart that is very handy if you have a lot of leaves or significant acres to clear. I would not even waste my time with the 7 bushel system. It will fill very fast in the fall and you will hate it. It wont jack knife and is very quick to unload.

Correct me if I'm wrong, but the 47 shaft driven is for a higher end series of tractor than the X500 series, right? And I assume the disassembly of the impeller shaft is something you do in/for the off season - store it disassembled?
 

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Comparing the 44 inch and 47 inch belt driven snow blowers, the 47 inch has much larger impeller ( 16 inch vs 12 inch) the auger on 47 inch turns almost twice as fast 200 rpm’s vs the 44 110rpm. What that translates to in real world performance, is the 47 inch will move more snow, much more quickly. In heavy snowfall amounts it will save you considerable time. Your driveway will take about 10/15 min to snow blow, and I agree with others, very little area’s I can’t get in with my 47 inch blower- and again when you are maneuvering the snow blower for tight spots the power steering is very nice to have. I haven’t disassembled my impeller shaft—but I make sure I clean off my 47 inch blower when I’m done snow blowing, I just take an old broom and brush out any leftover snow no issues so far

In addition to driveway and sidewalk, I also snow blow paths in backyard top wife’s two small dogs. I just lift blower about inch off ground ( so I don’t dig up the back lawn) takes a few min.

As for mowing ¾ acre will take you approx.30 min, maybe a bit longer if you have a lot of flower boxes /tree’s obstacles to go around. Steer one handed with power steering leaving other hand free for beverage of your choice on hot days hahahaha
 

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Correct me if I'm wrong, but the 47 shaft driven is for a higher end series of tractor than the X500 series, right? And I assume the disassembly of the impeller shaft is something you do in/for the off season - store it disassembled?
You are correct the shaft driven blowers and decks are for the modern x7's and above tractors. It can be confusing because before the current tractor numbering system JD made x5's and x4's that are the equivalent to today's x7's.

In the x580/590 you ate looking at it's all belts.

You don't have to disassemble the blower to store it or remove it from the machine. There is some yearly maintenance items on the blower but they aren't difficult.

I would also suggest the 47inch blower unless you know for sure you will need to go somewhere where only the 44 will fit.
 

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Discussion Starter #20
Couple of thoughts for you:

1. John Deere makes three snowblower series, the 44" manual lift/belt driven, 47 hydraulic lift/belt driven, and 47/54 shaft driven units. You are comparing the 44 and the 47 belt driven. The gearboxes on the 47 belt are heavier duty, the housing is better, and im pretty positive the impeller is larger. I would opt for the 47 over the 44 EVERY SINGLE TIME. I owned on run on an x530 and sold it to my brother, it has been trouble free. My only recommendation would be to disassemble and never-seize the impeller shaft before it rusts on.

2. Of the three x5 tractors the x590 will be best for you because of the significant snow removal task you have. It will start and run better than the carbed x580. I would not worry about the power steering or lift as they are simple robust systems.

3. Your dealer is wrong about the material collection systems. JD also offers a 519 cart that is very handy if you have a lot of leaves or significant acres to clear. I would not even waste my time with the 7 bushel system. It will fill very fast in the fall and you will hate it. It wont jack knife and is very quick to unload.

Dug around on the JD website and found the "dump from seat" version. This definitely seems the easier way to go, and yes, I DO have places to dump them. Leaves here tend to be a three to five week process - much like that video game "Missile Command" they just keep coming in waves, week after week, and this would make short work of that. While the "three bag" 14bu setup probably wouldn't be too bad either (and still a helluvalot easier than the current blow and rake methods) my initial instinct tells me that the dump-from-seat variety is a better way to go - but I'll let the members here pick any ill thinking I may have apart.

I have noticed that the JD website does miss a lot of this stuff - I really had to go digging for the dump-from-seat hopper as an example, and I also tried to find the shaft driven snowthrowers for the X700 series too, just to see how they price out and couldn't find them at all. I did have a curiosity as to whether the shaft driven versions were that much more expensive than the belt driven counterparts (IOW is it primarily a tractor upgrade or does the implements increase in price accordingly too). The X700 is probably a bridge too far here but I did look to see what those cost just as a curiosity.
 
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