So, it’s that time of the year again. Bring out your equipment and gear up for the arduous snow removal activity. Snow shoveling is not only laborious, but it can also be dangerous when precautions are not taken.
So before the first fall, here are some snow shoveling tips that may help you pull through the winter season and make your job easier. Let’s start shoveling snow!
The correct time to shovel snow
Many homeowners strongly advocate shoveling snow when the snowfall begins and do it after every few inches of snowfall. It is because if you do not clear snow and let it stay on the ground, you will have to work harder and longer to remove snow as wet snow is quite heavy. You will also have difficulty finding the driveway through several inches of snow.
Moreover, if there is a break at some point and the snow melts and then refreezes, it will harden and become slippery and may cause serious injuries. So do not wait for more snow to fall and start shoveling right away.
If there is a storm and heavy snowfall, you will have to do the snow shoveling multiple times if you do not have a snow blower. Late morning or noon is a better time for clearing snow so that the sun is in your favor.
Safety-related snow shoveling tips
Safety is an important consideration for shoveling snow as the activity poses significant health risks, particularly cardiac-related injuries. This is specifically important for people with high blood pressure and heart disease. Here are a few tips
- Make sure you wear layers to stay warm and protect yourself from the cold air.
- Take frequent breaks to avoid tiring out.
- Instead of lifting snow, consider pushing it with a snow shovel so that you do not strain your back.
1- Getting a snow shovel
The first consideration for snow shoveling is choosing the right shovel for the job. Consider how much and how frequently your area gets snowfall. If you live in an area prone to heavy snowstorms, you can get a snow blower. However, it is quite an investment and if you are not willing to invest that much, get an electric snow shovel. It is lightweight, less in price than snow blowers and does a better job than a standard plastic shovel.
2- When to shovel snow
If you want to get rid of snow quickly, it is better to remove snow as soon as the snow falls on your driveway. Shoveling snow is easier when it is soft and fresh. If you let more snow gather, it will harden and freeze to become ice, and removing that is difficult and can also cause an injury. The white stuff looks beautiful but removing it will be a pain for sure.
3- Snow shoveling from the entryways
Before you proceed to clear the driveway, consider shoveling snow from the entry points to your house. These could be the front and backdoors, the patio or deck etc. If you remove snow from these areas first, you will not have to plough your way through the snow every time.
4- Snow shoveling from the driveway
When pushing snow from the driveway, keep your electric shovel or snow blower at least half an inch above the surface. The shovel blade will damage your driveway if you shovel close to the surface. Use calcium chloride when you shovel your driveway so as to prevent any cracks or damage to the surface.
When you push snow, consider using the shovel in a straight line down the middle first, as it is a more efficient way to shovel snow. If you have a plow shovel, it will make your job easier, as you can use it to throw snow along the side and dump it in the form of piles.
Ensure you have dressed adequately for the cold weather and wear the right footwear to prevent injury or getting your feet wet.