It’s fun to watch a snowstorm from the safety of home, and there’s something magical about newly fallen snow. Unfortunately, it’s not long before you have to go outside and remove the snow from driveways and sidewalks.
Snow shovels are practical for small areas, and snow blowers make quick work of medium-sized spaces covered in up to six inches of snow. But a snowplow affixed to your truck or ATV is the best way to quickly clear large volumes of snow from your property. Plowing snow isn’t as easy as it looks, though. Keep a few things in mind to ensure the job goes smoothly.
How to Plow Snow
Before it snows, mark obstructions and boundaries with flags, including fire hydrants, mailboxes, exposed pipes, and the edges of your driveway. Then, consider keeping an area of your yard clear of trees and shrubs so you have somewhere to push snow in the winter.
Here are some useful tips on how to drive a snowplow truck:
- Familiarize yourself with the in-cab controls. Practice moving the blades up and down and changing their angle before you tackle your first snow pile.
- Use the “power V” technique—with the point facing away from the truck—to make the initial pass through a deep area or long driveway.
- Angle the plow to one side to push snow off in that direction. To prevent snow from falling on the opposite side of your truck, approach the pile so no more than three-fourths of the blade is covered in snow.
- In some cases, you may want to angle the plow in a “V” shape with the point facing the truck to collect snow instead of pushing it off to the side.
- Set the plow to a straight position to push snow directly ahead of you, making a pile at the end. This is a good technique for plowing parking lots.
- Use the “back drag” technique to remove snow piled against a structure. Raise the blade and approach the snowbank. Lower the blade a few inches away from the building, and then drive in reverse, dragging the snow with you. Then, raise the blade, move the truck behind the snow pile, and plow the snow off to one side. For deeper drifts, keep the blade elevated to drag off layers of snow until the pile is low enough to remove completely.
- When plowing on dirt or gravel, lower the plow shoes. This raises the blade to prevent scraping the loose road material. Remove the plow shoes again before plowing on asphalt or concrete.
Snow Plow Safety Tips
- Don’t exceed 40 mph with a plow attached to your truck. Don’t exceed 14 mph while plowing.
- Check the temperature gauge often to ensure the engine isn’t overheating.
- Wear your seatbelt, and don’t plow with your head sticking out the window.
- Look over your shoulder to check for obstructions behind you when driving in reverse.
- When you’re finished plowing, lower the blade to the ground to remove stress from the hydraulic components and turn off the plow control for safety.
Call The Grounds Guys® for Help Removing Snow
If shoveling, snow blowing, and plowing are too overwhelming or time-consuming for your tastes, let The Grounds Guys handle the job. Our snow removal services will keep your sidewalks, driveway, deck, and patio clear of snow and ice. To request your free job estimate, please contact us today.
Did you know? The Grounds Guys is a Neighbourly company. Learn more about Neighbourly’s community of home service experts at Neighborly.com/ca.