Part of their 1150 Snow Series, this Briggs and Stratton (Model #1696741) is the most powerful single-stage snow blower in their lineup. Right up there with the Toro SnowMaster 824QXE, it’s a nice compromise between a single-stage and dual-stage machine.
250cc 1150 Series Engine
Inside the Briggs & Stratton 1222EE is a 250cc 4-cycle OHV engine. Part of their 1150 Snow Series, it packs a lot of punch with a gross torque of 11.5 ft/lbs. As a 4-cycle, this does not require mixing gas and oil. Overall, a nice reliable engine. The company has fixed the carburetor issues that plagued their small engines a decade ago.
While Briggs & Stratton makes many of their engine in the U.S., the 1150 series engine is not one of them. Maybe that will change as they’ve brought more manufacturing back to the States over the years.
SnowShredder Serrated Auger
The marketing lingo with the 1222EE is “SnowShredder Serrated Auger Technology”. What this means is that besides the rubber paddles that makes contact with the ground, there are serrated steel blades that spin as well. These blades are built for breaking up heavier snow and ice you may encounter. This includes the car ruts and the big piles at the end of the driveway.
The “technology” works great and makes this unit the best single-stage snow blower for heavy snow. So if you’re on the East Coast or get lake effect snow, this is a nice compromise if you find a two-stage snow blower is out of your price range.
How much snow can the Briggs & Stratton 1222EE remove?
The 1222EE has a 22-inch clearance width and 12.5-inch intake height. Eight inches of light snow is where I’d set my limit. You could probably remove close to a foot if you work slowly. Heavier snow limits are closer to 4-6 inches in a single pass.
There’s some impressive throwing power with this unit. Lighter snow can get tossed close to 30 feet through the air at lower angles. Even the wetter snow gets thrown 15 feet or more. This makes it ideal for a standard 2-car suburban driveway.
Auger-Propelled Drive System
Like most single-stage units on the market, the Briggs & Stratton 1222EE uses an auger-propelled drive system. The rubber auger tips make contact with the ground and “propel” the unit forward. This gives you one speed to operate on and isn’t as smooth as a traditional self-propelled unit. The speed is a little slow for my liking, but not a big issue. It’s the one area that puts this machine behind the Toro SnowMaster 724QXE and 824QXE in my opinion.
Otherwise, the handling is great. There is no power steering, but the machine is light enough to not require it. Oversized controls allow for use with thick winter gloves.
Electric Chute Rotation
One of the nice features is the electric chute rotation. This motorizes the 200 degree turning radius chute. The button for this is right under the handlebar allowing for control with one of your fingers already on the handlebar. I’ve only used this feature in a showroom so I can’t tell you how it would hold up in the elements.
For controlling the height and ultimately distance the snow is thrown, there is a quick-adjust deflector on the chute. It’s easy to use with gloves on, although requires stopping to adjust.
The chute is made of a heavy-duty plastic. I have not heard any complaints about snow getting stuck. Likely, this is due to the speed of the auger. There is however considerable vibration when the motor is running.
Electric Start and Headlights
A push button electric start option goes alongside the traditional recoil start. This allows for starting in temperatures as low as -20°F. Extension cord is not included.
Dual incandescent headlights are emblazoned right under the handlebars. They stretch across the whole unit to provide a nice spread. One of the better headlight setups on the market. These are an important safety feature if you plan to use your snow blower at night or in poor visibility.
Briggs & Stratton offers a 3-year limited warranty on this unit. If your machine does not start within two electric start attempts (in temperature above –20∞F), they will fix the issue. Warranty service is available through authorized dealers only. Make sure you have one in the area if this is a concern.
This is a great choice for people in areas with heavy snow and ice that can’t afford a more powerful two-stage snow blower. The serrated auger blades work well and should be able to handle areas that receive moderate snowfall totals (up to 40 inches a year). It has enough throwing power for a medium sized driveway and works best on flat, paved surfaces (don’t use on gravel). A slightly sloped driveway is fine, but it doesn’t clean as well going down as it does going up.
The 22-inch Briggs and Stratton 250cc gas snowblower (1696741) offers a lot of power in a compact package. It’s one of the best single stage snowblowers on the market. At around $700, it is also a terrific value.
Brand: Briggs & Stratton
Model: 1696741 (Operator’s Manual)
Stage Type: Single-Stage Gas
Engine: 250cc 4-Cycle OHV
Fuel Capacity: 3.2 quarts
Plowing Capacity: Unknown
Clearing Width: 22 inch
Intake Height: 12.5 inch
Throw Distance: 30 feet
Tires: 8 inch
Weight: 98 pounds
Warranty: 3-year Limited
Starting Method: Recoil and Electric
Speed/s: 1 (Auger-Propelled)
Power Steering: No
Chute adjustment: Electric Remote (200° turning radius)
Headlight: Yes (2 Incandescent)
Heated handlebars: No