Keeping your walks and driveway clear of snow can be an ongoing winter challenge. This guide contains snow removal tips.
Original post is from January 2009.
Grandma J here in MN. Got our share of the white stuff (snow) this winter, more coming. Considering we should prepare in October, it takes the first snow storm for us to do this.
Save your back and maybe your HEART! Investing in good snow removal equipment is essential, even for the basics. I bought a push shovel for about $25. Not a scooper of snow, just push it. Then have another one for scooping. Make sure you try them out in the fashion you will hold it, bend with it, etc. ERGONOMIC tools are there.
For my birthday in December, hubby bought me a new snowblower. Never touched one in my life. Always used the shovel. So when he was in the hospital before Christmas having a total knee, I had to learn to use it. Had to call him for help on the cell phone. Tucked it under my ear, you know how we multi task, and it flew across into a 3 foot snow drift. Me, screaming DON'T HANG UP. DUH! Did not run any trees over, got the property cleaned up nice, I might say.
I also have a scraper blade, looks like a garden hoe on the straight down. A MUST. Pops under the ice chunks, packed snow that you can't shovel off. Use it like a lever.
THEN HIDE your snow tools (but in a handy place for you) so they can't be borrowed by ANYONE! Family forgets where to return things they take "just for a bit".
If you find snow, ice sticking, take an old candle and rub the blade edges. SLICK.
Also, get a couple ice cream buckets and fill with an ice sanding element. Can be sidewalk salt, can be sand (what do you do with the sandbox stuff in the fall? Fill some buckets before dumping the rest into the garden!)
Anything left over can be stored till the next year. DO NOT SET the bag on the basement floor. Salt eats cement in long term position and mega amounts.
Source: Joyce's experiences in life.
By Joyce from Benson MN
Joyce, You made a miserable job sound like it was not only fun but the way you wrote the article was funny! No snow here from the Florida girl but I remember the big snow days from all of my winters in Ohio and in Chicago.
If my husband ever bought me a snowblower for my birthday I think I would tell him to get a good lawyer. LOL
Sandy from Pittsburgh
I think it's a thoughtful present! We've already scooped close to 25 inches this season (probably minor compared to you!), and joked that we'd get our first snowblower for DH's 50th birthday. But we may not be able to wait those few more years. I second your 'get the right equipment' sentiments. Hubby pushes & I scoop since we need to be out the drive by 6:45 am every weekday. Thanks for the post!
We've been getting a bit of snow here in Nebraska, and it just keeps piling on. I've got a tip for quick snow removal from the car. Purchase a $1 broom at a Dollar Tree or at another dollar store location. Use it to brush snow off your car when it piles on. It's quick, and you won't need to leave your car running while you dig it out.
By JenniP from Lincoln, NE
What a great idea!
I use a push broom. A bit more expensive but it lasts for years. My preference is an old curling broom, since it has a rather narrow head and was designed to work on ice.
I used to do this when I worked and drove our old car to the parking lot. It works marvelously to clean off the whole car right away, but if you do clean the whole car, beware that the stiff bristles on the cheaper brooms will make light scratches on your car. It works on your windows, but will cause fine scratches elsewhere. A more expensive broom will be okay if it has those softer bristles on the end. But test it out first.
I live in New England. We've had our first snowstorm of the year with more to come (supposedly). Any tips on how to avoid the snowplowed snow from the street from blocking our driveway. Just thought maybe someone had a nifty tip for this.
Marie from MA
Well, Marie you can do what I do and that is to shovel the street in the direction that the plow comes in. For example, standing in your drive way, if the plow comes from the left then shovel in that direction for a distance of maybe 5 or 6 feet, depending on how much snow has fallen. This gives an space for the snow to fill in from the plow and less in your drive way. What you are doing is shoveling that mound of snow which is called a mogul.
Thank you Harry, that's a great idea!
Oh boy. I live on a corner, and every time the plow came around the corner, he filled my driveway with up to 3 feet of snow. I was shoveling up to 5 times a day. I finally asked for a professional opinion and help from the village.
Now the snowplow drivers push the corner snow that is "upstream" from my driveway, into my "upstream" right-of-way. That way, when the plow comes around the corner, there's less snow for him to push into my driveway. I also shovel frequently, of course.
Same idea as Harry's, except the snowplow rather than my shovel does the work. I also have a neighbor with a tractor whom I can call, if necessary.
Ah, sweet spring, where are you?
I bought a floor squeegie at the dollar store. The long handle makes it easy to clean the top off the car, and the squeegie really cleans the windows off great, removes all that nasty salt.
You know how when it snows, and you have to go out and shovel all that "stuff" and the snow piles keep getting higher and higher?