Stan: Four. For 33 years, I thought that there were four basic pieces of equipment, that as long as any landscape company owned, they could tackle just about any project. Then three years ago, on a pure whim, I picked up what's going to turn out to be number five. It didn't become number five right away. In fact, it didn't become number five until I noticed that on every single one of our projects, the crews would eventually bring it out and put it to work. Sometimes, they would put it to work every single day in the project. Other times, they would only bring it out until the very end of the job. Nevertheless, it always went out on every single one of our jobs.
Stan: Now, when some of you guys find out what this tool is, you're gonna go, no way, no how. That's fine. I don't care, because I would have said the same thing four years ago before I owned one. I would have never guessed that this thing would become such an asset to our company, so I don't blame you for not believing me. What I'm talking about is called a multi-tool.
Stan: Now guys, a typical multi-tool can handle a variety of attachments. Chain saw heads, pruners, edgers, bed redefiners. My favorite attachment by far, hands down, is the paddle wheel. That thing rocks! I'm actually putting my hand in it. You guys watch. Don't do this at home. Actually, I am at home. Don't do this at my home.
Stan: In this case, the one I'm using is an Echo PAS 280 multi-tool. Not wasting any more time, let's get into the video. Whoa, whoa, whoa, now before we get too far into this video, I want you guys to take your best guesses what you think the four most critical pieces of equipment are that any landscape company should own, but be specific. If you guys want to know what I think they are, let me know in the comments down below and I'll make those four videos for you, or maybe I'll make them into one video and save you guys a lot of time.
Stan: All right guys, so I contacted the company that I got mine through, and they agreed to give one of these away to one of you guys. We're not doing it through YouTube, we're going to do it through Facebook. Stay tuned, because after today's review is all done, we're gonna show you guys how you could possibly get one of your very own. If you don't happen to be given one, I'm gonna put a link down below to the cheapest place I found online where you could buy one for yourself. Literally guys, this is one of those tools that now that I own, I know I can never un-own.
Stan: Now over on Instagram, you guys have watched this video over 507,000 times, just in the last few weeks. Another 110,000 times for two other versions that I've put out since then. Now look down on here. You can see we call this the- I don't know, this is called the neato wheel. I don't even know if this is the right term for this. It's actually called a pro sweep attachment. Right next to it, we've got the paddle broom. If you guys are gonna go with one accessory or the other for your own multi-tool, get this one. Get the paddle broom. This thing is okay, but it's got very limited uses. That one is more effective. Now, the reason I'm standing here with the shovel is I want to show you something. Do you see this steel edge on this shovel? This is a composite deck. Now I'm not going to run this steel edge on this composite deck because I don't want the little fine scratches that something like this will leave.
Stan: Some of you guys, when you're out there doing your own snow clearing, whatever you're going to use something like this for, you can damage a soft surface with that. This is not really a snow blower, but it works almost the same on lighter snows. Anything up to about four inches, this thing's gonna be very effective. When you get above four inches, well, you figure it out.
Stan: Hey, here's a brilliant move for you. It kind of helps if you open the choke when you're trying to start a cold piece of equipment. Let's see how long it takes me to figure that one out. That's number two. Three. Four. Five. Six. Okay, when you want to start it, don't have it in the stop position. Just a note.
Stan: Actually it was in the start position with the choke off, and now I've put it into the stop position with the choke off. Some of you guys actually think I know what I'm doing.
Stan: Seven. Eight. Nine. 10. 11. Don't put it into the stop. Eventually, this Pollack will figure it out. 12. 13. 14. 15. 16. Still, I haven't figured out all I have to do is turn the choke on. Now, I'm going to flood it by trying to hold the throttle down and start it. Genius. 17. 18. 19. 20. Really had this rush ... 21. 22. 23. 24. 25. 26. 27. Come on. 28. You can do it. 29. I believe in you. 30, come on. You can do it. You can figure it out. Oh. I didn't have the choke on. My bad! See, you turn the camera on me and I get all nervous.
Stan: Now this is the pro sweep attachment, and it works pretty good. There's one place that you can use this attachment if you can't use the paddle broom. Now, I told you I was gonna show you the one and only time that I think that this neato wheel bristle broom attachment comes in handy. It's a pro sweep. It's not that hard to remember. I'm gonna show it to you right now. Let's go around the front of the house.
Stan: Now, some of you know that my car is [rhino-lined 00:05:53], but my hood is not. In fact, my hood is painted just like any other car. This pro sweep attachment didn't affect it at all. This is the only time I would use this attachment over the paddle broom.
Stan: All right, guys, let's get something straight. The only reason I'm showing you how this paddle broom works on snow is because that's what I've got around here right now. If it was the middle of summer, I would be definitely cleaning streets and showing you how well it works on mud and debris. I've gotta work with what I've got available. That's the way it is.
Stan: The answer to your question is if you own a car dealership and you've gotta clear a whole bunch of cars, then you're gonna get that. Right?
Stan: No, you're not. You'd be nuts. I think the other attachment is pretty much, it's better because it's just more universal, meaning that now we're gonna switch- actually, let's start this one up and see how it does on this.
Andy: The driveway?
Stan: On the driveway. Then let's see how the other one does. Some of the guys wanted to see what it was like on compacted snow.
Stan: That was one of the questions. Let's do it. This is, I've been driving on this thing. I intentionally did not clear this driveway, just so I could test this thing out.
Stan: Really the best application for this pro sweep attachment is if you have to clean rocks, debris, construction items out of sod or turf, then this thing comes in really handy. If you're trying to clear hard surfaces of compacted debris, then you're gonna want to go with the paddle broom attachment, which is what we typically do when we're doing landscaping projects and we dump our dirt or soil in the streets. That's why we prefer that attachment over this one.
Stan: Let's switch attachment.
Andy: This ain't nothing like the other one. That one shreds.
Stan: The other one?
Andy: Oh yeah, with stuff like that, that would have came out the first time without even having to go back again.
Stan: That's why we left this part right here. We're gonna see if that's actually true or not. Now, Andy's operated this machine quite a bit. He's gonna get the other attachment and put it on, but we're gonna actually see how effective it is against compacted snow. Both of these attachments will work great on soft surfaces. This one, I trust more for really soft surfaces like a car. I actually wasn't being facetious when I said if you own a car dealership and you need something to clear your car, well, you could do this, but you probably wouldn't. You can, but I wouldn't.
Stan: Let's talk about this PAS 280 real quick. Now the newer version is called the PAS 2620, and it actually has more power. I'm gonna share my long term experiences. Now I've owned this machine for over three years. It's actually going on four years now. That's okay, we forgive you. You're old.
Stan: Every crew grabs this machine at the end of the job or the end of the day, and they bring this out to the job site to clean up the roads. A lot of times, we're working off the roads, and we've gotta leave the roads pretty much spic and span when we're done. It's been flawless. The machine has not given me a single issue in three years of running it. It's never been in the repair shop. It's never had any problems whatsoever. You know how to switch that out okay, Andy?
Andy: I thought I did.
Stan: You gotta, remember that part. You've got that up and unlocked. To switch power heads ...
Andy: Oh, there it is.
Stan: Yep. It slides apart.
Andy: Yeah, it's this way.
Stan: Line it up. Line up the arrows. Make sure your key is unlocked, yep. Key's unlocked. Goes in up to the arrows. Lock the key. Tighten it up. That is, right there guys, that is how hard it is to switch heads. Now this machine will take a chainsaw head, it'll take a trimmer head, it'll take a tiller head. We have two different kinds of edgers that we use on it. This Echo PAS 280 multi-tool is literally one of our favorite pieces of equipment. Now, let's see if it'll shred like he said.
Stan: Now we don't actually use this for clearing snow very often. We do use it on every single job site for clearing mud off from streets. You can imagine that the snow you're looking at was actually caked on mud, you can see how effective this would be.
Stan: Now to be fair, we've been compacting this snow for four or five days. It's not a lot of snow, but we've still been compacting it because some of you guys wanted to see how it would handle compacted snow. The trick with these power brooms is to let the machine do the work. If you try to control the machine, it's gonna tire you out pretty fast. If you let the weight of the machine do the work and you just hold onto the trigger and steer ...
Stan: Now look closely at this surface. You can see just how clean this paddle broom attachment gets it. A snow blower would never get this surface as clean. If this was mud in a street, it would bring it right back to its original condition.
Stan: Now this thing has a wide open spinning wheel, which kinda makes you wonder how safe are these things? I'm gonna test that out next. When you guys go to operate your own power broom, make sure you wear the proper safety gear. All right, maybe not this. This thing is so dirty, I can't see anything out of it.
Stan: I'm actually putting my hand in it. You guys watch. Don't do this at home. Well, actually I am at home. Don't do this at my home.
Stan: A lot of guys get their hands and feet caught in a snow blower. All right. The only reason I'm doing that is to show you how safe these things are. Is it as effective as a snow blower? No, but for doing landscaping work, for cleaning up streets, for doing snow removal, you're not gonna get anybody getting their hands or feet caught in these things, getting injured from them. They do a great job unless there's snow falls. The guys bring these things out on every single one of our projects. They love this for cleaning up the streets when we get them full of dirt and rocks and stuff like that. If a video like this has helped you guys out, let me know in the comments down below, or hit the like button. Tell me what other kind of videos you guys like to see.
Stan: All right, you guys probably want to know how you can get your hands on your very own one of these for free. Well, only one of you is gonna do it, and this is how you do it. Down below this video, comment on what your favorite landscaping tools are, and then, to enter to win one, you go over to Echo's Facebook page and comment when you see this video down below. When they see your comment over there, they're going to enter and pick one of you guys to win one of these. Now, if you don't win it and you want to buy one, make sure you click on the link below, because I am gonna find the absolute best place online that you guys can order one. That way, it saves you guys a lot of time and trouble.
Stan: Make sure you please subscribe. God bless, and tell me your favorite landscape tools.
Stan: All right, guys, I had to add this last part in, because these things are actually pretty easy to start when you know what you're doing. Totally cold out, make sure it's primed, in choke position this time. I'm gonna put it into run. See if I can do it. One. Two. Three. Woo-hoo! I knew I could do it.