TaskEasy Tips

Snow Removal Tips

If you’re one of those fortunate people who lives in a place that gets snowfall each winter, you probably know that while beautiful, snow can also be somewhat of an inconvenience. Especially when you wake up to go to work and see a fresh foot of snow covering your driveway. Unfortunately snow doesn’t care about your busy work schedule and can arrive at the most inopportune of times. At TaskEasy, we want to help make your winter easier so we’ve compiled a list of what we think are the most important snow removal tips.

Be Prepared and Stay Safe

We can’t plan ahead for every big snowstorm but we can sure try! It’s a good idea to check the forecast every night before hitting the pillow. If there is snow in the forecast, set your alarm early to give you both time for snow removal and additional time for safe driving. A snowstorm plus being in a rush is a recipe for disaster. It’s better to give yourself some extra time and play it safe. When preparing for snow removal, make sure to stretch before heading out so that your muscles are warmed up and less prone to injury. An injury is probably the last thing you want to deal with during the Holiday season. Dressing right is also very important. Layers are great and slip-resistant boots are your best friend.

Picking The Right Shovel

First, make sure you have the right shovel. If you have a bad back, you might consider a snow shovel to be somewhat of a torture device. However, there are ergonomic snow shovels available that you may want to look into. Get a shovel that matches your strength. For example, If you are small and slender, maybe consider something lightweight with a shorter handle. Choose an appropriate blade size. You’ll want to carry as much snow as possible without straining yourself.

Shoveling Tips

If you are using a shovel, bend with your knees and lift with your legs. We don’t want you to throw your back out. It’s also a good idea to switch between shoveling right-handed and left-handed in order to avoid muscle fatigue on one side. If there is a foot or more of snow, we recommend not trying to get it all with a single scoop. Rather, try skimming the top 6 inches before getting the bottom. This will help you avoid hurting yourself.

It’s a smart idea to shovel a path to your car first if you have a car in the driveway. This way, you can start your car and let the defroster start working as you finish shoveling (Note: NEVER leave a running car unattended, for obvious reasons). One thing to also think about is where you’ll put all that freshly cleared snow. For example, it’s obviously not cool to end up with a huge pile of snow at the end of your driveway or walkway. Also, if you pile the snow too close to the edge, you may end up with a problem because the next storm could potentially blow the snow back into your driveway and undo all of your hard work.

Pace yourself. Snow removal isn’t a race (or at least it shouldn’t be). Take a break every few minutes or at least when you start to feel tired and make sure to keep hydrated. Snow shoveling is quite the workout and it can be way too easy to overexert yourself.

Use a Snow Blower

Shovels are great but snow blowers are another alternative for snow removal that may be worth considering if you live in a heavy snow area. There are three main types of snow blowers: single-stage, two-stage, and you guessed it, three-stage. Keep reading for more details on each type.

  • Single-stage: These are light and easier to handle than the other types of snow blowers. Ideal for clearing mid-size areas with a snowfall of around 8 inches or less. Unlike two-stage and three-stage, these are available with an electric powered option instead of just gas powered. Electric means even more lightweight and less maintenance. Normally you can find electric snowblowers with or without an extension cord.
  • Two-stage: This is your next level gas snow blower that can handle snow in excess of 8 inches up to 21 inches. These are ideal for clearing larger areas and have engine-driven wheels in order to better handle even the most uneven of terrain. This is also the option for you if you’re looking to move snow much faster and farther than you would with a single-stage blower.
  • Three-stage: The king of snow blowers. This is the option for you if you want a gas option that can handle the most amount of snow in the least amount of time. The major difference between the two-stage and the three-stage is that the three-stage blower has an accelerator that moves snow up to 10 times faster.

Ice Ice Baby

Most of us have slipped on ice at some point or another in our lifetime and it’s not very fun. Also, do you really want to risk the possibility of family or guests slipping and injuring themselves? We thought so! So, unless you are setting up a trap for home intruders, you’ll want to start using anti-icers and de-icers for ice removal.

  • Anti-icers are a chemical that is applied before the snowfall even begins. This is a proactive way to prevent snow and ice from bonding to the pavement, allowing you to clear snow from the surface more easily.
  • Deicers are chemicals that are spread on the pavement after you have cleared the snow in order to keep any remaining snow and ice melted to allow for safe walking conditions.

Both options come in several varieties and you’ll want to read labels to determine what is the best option for you. Whatever you do, make sure to evenly spread and not overuse as the harsh chemicals can be harmful to the environment.