Switching from Echo to Stihl?

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by Matt Mow's, Oct 17, 2011.

  1. Matt Mow's

    Matt Mow's LawnSite Member
    Messages: 28

    Right now, I run all Echo handhelds, actually the smaller ones, and they do a pretty good job. I've had the edger and trimmer for a year now and they have served the purpose. I have also heard a lot of good things about Stihl and was wondering what you guys thought. Has anyone made the switch from Echo to Stihl or another major brand? How does the Stihl 4-mix stuff work? No dealer can give me a clear answer. And as far as dealer support goes, I have a good dealer for both in my area. Thanks.
  2. mowerbrad

    mowerbrad LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 6,268

    What do you mean by "how does the Stihl 4-mix stuff work"? Basically its a 4-cycle engine but you treat it almost exactly like a 2-stroke engine. You still mix the gas and oil...so on a day to day basis you could not tell that its a 4-cycle engine and not a 2-stroke (except for the sound difference). I'm not that mechanically inclined so I can't tell you all about the differences.

    Several years ago I walked into a dealer looking for a new trimmer. I thought I was pretty set on getting echo, however the dealer told me to go with stihl over echo. The dealer sold both and said that they usually aim homeowners toward the echo stuff and professionals to the stihl stuff.

    I love my stihl equipment and can't believe that I thought about switching to a different brand.
  3. Ridin' Green

    Ridin' Green LawnSite Fanatic
    Male, from Michigan
    Messages: 17,828

    No matter where you go, or who you ask, you're gonna find guys who don't like one brand or another, and usually it's based off of one bad piece of equipment that gave them trouble so they condemn the whole brand.

    That said, Stihl makes extremely good equipment. I've used Stihl equipment for almost 30 years along with stuff made by other manufacturer's, with no major problems from any of them.

    The 4Mix is simply a 4 stroke engine that runs on 2 stroke fuel/oil mix. There's no oils sump to take up space and make the engine heavier or larger like a standard 4 stroke would have. Stihl recommends having the valves adjusted after the first 139 hours of use (if needed). Some have reported going a LOT longer than that, and never having had the valves adjusted. If the engine starts hard, or runs rough or weak, the valves probably need adjusting.

    Other than that, they require no more maintenance than any other quality piece of equipment. The 4 mix BP blowers give the impression that they are not as powerful as the 2 strokes BP's due to their sound, but don't let that mislead you any. They flat out get the job done.

    One other thing-
    If your dealer can't tell you the difference between a 4 Mix, and a standard 2 stroke engine, find another dealer!
  4. GMLC

    GMLC LawnSite Platinum Member
    Messages: 4,345

    I have been running stihl for over 15 years. Make the change and never look back!!!
    Posted via Mobile Device
  5. stickleylawncare

    stickleylawncare LawnSite Member
    Messages: 169

    I use Stihl because the dealer is 5 minutes away vs 25 minutes. Im certainly happy with all the equipment, but I cant say its better than echo. Was simply service/dealership that sold it for me.
  6. ed2hess

    ed2hess LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 14,578

    This is simple stay with the Echo 2 stroke stuff....it is tried it is proven it is easy to work on and the units are reliable. I tried 5 4mix machines and it is just like you can suspect that when you got another variable(valves/adj) it makes it harder to service the machine. And NO unit ever runs forever.
  7. hammmerhead

    hammmerhead LawnSite Senior Member
    from ozarks
    Messages: 264

    I have old 2 stroke Echo and Stihl handhelds. I like them both about the same, but the Stihl has more impact protection for the engine and carb. which comes in handy from time to time. Personally I would stick with the 2-strokes for now.
  8. BaxtersEssentialLawnCare

    BaxtersEssentialLawnCare LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 297

    I run them both. I use the echo when I want something light and I'm trimming small stuff. The stilh is for when I want something a little meaiter or when I got some major trimming to do. The stilhs have more power than echo if you buy the right ones. So I say use echo for their strenghts light and easy on fuel use stilh for heavy stuff.
  9. Turf Tracer

    Turf Tracer LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,737

    Echo and Stihl both suck....Echo commercial stuff a bit better in general than Stihl.

    Switch to Shindaiwa.

    A.T.G LAWN CARE LawnSite Member
    Messages: 43

    Ive always used echo its been reliable and effective

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