7 Tips For Shoveling This Winter

woman using plastic snow shovel to remove heavy snow from the sidewalk.See more related images in my Winter Snow Removal lightbox:

Millions of people shovel snow off their driveways and sidewalks every winter. However, for some, this can cause some big problems. After all, this task requires a lot of physical effort. So, if someone’s not in good shape, they risk a fall or worse. Then, other people don’t have the stamina. With these seven tips, you can clear snow easier and safer this year.

Don’t Wait for Snow to Accumulate

The deeper the snow, the heavier it is. That means if you allow it to accumulate before shoveling, you’ll work much harder than necessary. Instead, head outside several times while snow’s falling to clear off your driveway and walkways. Depending on how heavy the downfall is, you might need to do this about every hour. However, you can finish the task faster and without as much effort.

Select the Right Equipment

Always choose the right kind of snow removal equipment. For example, never use a shovel with a metal blade on pavers or bricks. That’s because it could damage them. Another thing, you never want to use rock salt on concrete as it can cause serious damage. Instead, purchase a melting product formulated specifically for this type of driveway or walkway.

In addition, if you use a snowblower, keep the blades at least a half inch off the surface. If you plan to buy this type of machine, remember that a single-stage snowblower is ideal for up to nine inches. However, for heavier and deeper snow, you’ll need a two-stage snowblower.

Use the Shovel Correctly

Whether you use a plastic or metal shovel, you want to use it the correct way. Otherwise, you could sustain a back, shoulder, or knee injury. When removing snow, keep the shovel close to your body. As a result, you won’t overreach every time you scoop up snow and toss it off the surface.

Eliminate Chunks of Ice

It’s common for large pieces of ice to form on the tip of metal snow shovels. To prevent this from happening, spray both the front and back of the shovel with cooking spray. The lubrication makes all the difference.

Removing Snow from Your Vehicle

Before clearing off your driveway, be sure to remove snow from your vehicle. That way, you can scoop up or blow off all the snow at once instead of doing the job twice.

Take a Strategic Approach

There’s even a right and wrong way to shovel snow. For this, start in the middle and then work your way toward the outside edges. As a result, you won’t move as much snow at one time. Many people begin at the top and work down, but that creates extra work.

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Make It Fun

If you have kids, let them gather the snow on the driveway or walkway to make a snowman. They can make the balls and then roll them off the surface when they’re done. By doing this, your kids can have a blast, and you’ll end up with less snow to remove.

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