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Hello everyone,
I'm looking at 2 different tractors, a new 2018 x350 or a 2012 x540, I will be using it primarily for blowing snow (small driveway, and portion of yard) I like some of the features on the x540 (hydraulic lift/power steering/locking diff/larger engine)
However it has 920 hours on it.

Just looking for feedback, both tractors with blowers come in around the same price.
What's the life expectancy on the 540s
Any feedback would be greatly appreciated
Thanks
 

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That's a tough one... but since you say the PRIMARY use will be for use with a snow blower I would say the X540 is a much more capable machine due to the weight, differential lock, hydraulic lift, and more powerful engine.

All of these things would make it a much better snow removal machine for use with a snow blower.
 

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I have used x300 and x540 for snow blowing. X300 series blows ok, but it is one wheel drive, very poor traction even with chains weights, cant go up hill. It just was not practical, gets stuck all the time. It is cold, miserable, your legs are sore from lifting the blower. you might as well get a handheld blower. Why bother.

X540 is much better. Bigger wheels, much better traction, never stuck for me. I never even had to use the diff, but it is nice to feel reassured. It is liquid cooled design, so it should last way longer. The k72 tran axle is very good. It is a good snow fighting machine.

Liquid cooled Kawasaki engine should last 2 to 3k hours before major repairs. I think the x350 air cooled engine should last 1k? But quite a lot of people have issues with the k46 trans before that.

Did the previous owner take good care of the x540? You say same price as a new x350, that means about 3000 dollars for the x540 without the blower? Seems like a workable deal if the machine is in good condition.
 

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For running a snowblower a tractor with a differential lock is very helpful. 4WD is even more helpful. I’d step up to a basic X7xx just to get a shaft driven snowblower. Belts have habit of getting wet and slipping.

I have used a few lower end lawn tractors with snowblowers . In my experience a good walk behind works far better on small driveways.
 

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These guys are experts at spending other peoples money. :laugh:
I think you would be perfectly fine with the x350. Don't worry about the belt slipping, I have a belt driven blower on my LA135, and have never not once had a belt slip. And in the 8+ years I have had it, I have not even had to replace the belt.

If you want a hydraulic lift, step up to an x370, it's really not much more $$ than the x350.

I mention the x370, because I am going to be getting one for myself this spring.
 

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There are three (3) major considerations to be made. Diff lock, transmission type/size, does the tractor have hydraulics. I own a 580 and have no issues in the snow with a 48" blade, plus the K72 is a very capable long life transmission. Hydraulics? well, sometimes my left index finger gets tired from turning the steering wheel and working the hydraulics. Traction? Up or down the hill makes no difference.
 

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As others said for snow removal the x540 will be a better machine for the money spent over a new x300. Not that the x300's are bad machines they just aren't anywhere near the machine an x500 is. The 540 is heavier, has bigger tires, and a better transmission. Right out of the box without any extra chains or weights its going to outperform the x300 in the snow.
 

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That's a tough one... but since you say the PRIMARY use will be for use with a snow blower I would say the X540 is a much more capable machine due to the weight, differential lock, hydraulic lift, and more powerful engine.

All of these things would make it a much better snow removal machine for use with a snow blower.
X2 way better snowremoval
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Thank you everyone, I appreciate the feedback, I'm learning towards the x540, the hours make me a little nervous, but sounds like an all around better machine, with many hours left ahead of it, are there any specific problems I should be on the lookout for?
 

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Thank you everyone, I appreciate the feedback, I'm learning towards the x540, the hours make me a little nervous, but sounds like an all around better machine, with many hours left ahead of it, are there any specific problems I should be on the lookout for?
Plan on changing all the fluids and filters when you get it unless you can verify for sure when they were last changed.

Take it for a good test drive and test all the attachments for proper function and mounting. Make sure you get a chance to both start the engine cold and while hot.

It won't be a brand new tight machine but it shouldn't feel loose or sloppy either.
 

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I’m not a snow removal guy so I’ll leave that to others. I think an new X380 versus the used X540 might be a little closer comparison. The 350 only has 18hp and the K46 transmission. I have the X324 with 22hp and the K58. I got it used and in great shape. Lots of power, nice machine. I also picked up an X540 with 370 hours because I wanted some more traction and a 54 mower to take on more of my field. The 540 looked good outwardly. It had been more neglected than I realized. I spent a lot of elbow grease and $1500 getting it up to snuff. The biggest surprise was a bad head gasket that showed up on a leak down test. The 540 is a beast. Time will tell if I am over the hurdles with it. I do love the power steering on the X540. If you are looking new look at an X390 with power steering then compare it to the X540 used.
 
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