Want to make snow removal easier this winter? Here’s what to do before it snows

·4 min read

Winter is just around the corner, and with it, winter weather. From helpful winter driving tips to how to create a snow removal game plan for those inevitable winter storms, Canadian Tire is here to make sure you’re ready to Bring On Winter, and everything that comes with it.

Man using snowblower to clear driveway during winter
Photo via Canadian Tire

Canada’s seasons can be tough to predict, but there’s one certainty you can rely on: at least a few times every winter, whether you expect it or not, Canadians across the country will experience a huge dump of snow that requires some back-breaking labour to get rid of.

Only this year, you’ll be ready for it. At least you will if you plan ahead with these top snow removal tips.

From getting a layer of ice melt down the night before a big storm to keeping your snowblower in tip-top condition, having a snow removal gameplan is key to getting through winter without any hitches (or backaches!). Here’s how to set yourself up for success ahead of the next inevitable winter storm.

Prepare before the storm hits

Woman using ice melter from Canadian Tire
Photo via Canadian Tire

Once you hear a storm is on the way, it’s time to get into preparation mode. The first thing you should do? Spread salt on your driveway, walkway and front steps before it starts snowing, so no treacherous ice forms underneath the layers of snow. An environmentally-friendly ice melter works like a charm for keeping your driveway slip-free (and will make shovelling much easier once the snow starts coming down).

If you happen to have a lot of real estate to cover, a salt and ice melt spreader will help get the job done quickly and easily. For easy access to salt all season, consider storing it in a heavy duty air-tight bin with a scoop.

Take care of your vehicles

Woman using snow brush to brush snow off car
Photo via Canadian Tire

Once you’ve spread ice melter over your driveway and sidewalk, go ahead move your vehicles back onto your driveway or, better yet, into your garage or under your carport if you have one. If you don’t, a waterproof car cover or collapsible windshield cover can help prevent ice from forming on your car, which will make brushing the snow off easier and less time-consuming.

For that, a scratch-free snow brush is handy to keep in the back of your car all winter long, and if you have a taller vehicle, a snow broom is a great way to help you get at hard-to-reach roofs. Short on space? A compact ice scraper is easy to use in a pinch and fits in any glove compartment.

Invest in a high-powered snowblower

Man using snowblower to clear walkway and front steps during winter
Photo via Canadian Tire

Without a doubt, the quickest way to remove snow is with a snowblower. While certainly more of an investment than a top-quality shovel, at the end of the day, a snowblower will help you avoid a lot of trouble — not to mention those aches and pains.

Before going shopping, you’ll want to think about the size of your driveway and walkway, as that will determine what size snowblower you should purchase. A larger gas snowblower will help you cover more space in less time, while this slightly smaller Troy-Bilt option runs cleaner and quieter than other models thanks to its winterized engine. You could also consider investing in an electric snowblower, which doesn’t require gas, oil or tune-ups.

Find the right snow shovel

Man using snow shovel to clear walkway during winter
Photo via Canadian Tire

If a snowblower isn’t your thing, a good shovel is an absolute imperative for avoiding back pain and fatigue. Most people have driveways that require both pushing and lifting snow, so you’ll want to find tools for both. A sleigh snow shovel will help move large amounts of snow all at once, with very little labour. An ergonomic shovel (like this one from Yardworks) is also effective for pushing snow through smaller areas, while a small trunk shovel is perfect for clearing narrow walkways and won’t take up much space in your shed or garage.

Shovel smarter, not harder

Woman using shovel from Canadian Tire to clear path
Photo via Canadian Tire

So you’ve got the right tools, and a gameplan in place. Now it’s time to take your snow removal to the next level with the help of a few clever hacks.

Looking to make life easier on your back? Try spraying your shovel with cooking spray or oil, which will help stop snow from clumping up and clinging to the plastic. Have landscaping you don’t want to ruin? Prevent accidental damage to your lawn or your snowblower by putting stakes around the perimeter of your driveway before it snows so you can easily see where to stop.

When it comes to getting rid of the snow, best practice is to push large amounts into piles first, and then use a smaller shovel to move it onto your lawn after that. You might also want to consider putting down more salt or ice melter to prepare for any future snowfall, or if the upcoming forecast shows a deep freeze coming your way after the storm. If you run out before you have time to get to the store to stock up, not to worry: kitty litter works in a pinch as well.

Winter isn’t always easy, but Canadians know how to make the best of it, and Canadian Tire is here to help. Whether you’re looking for tips on dealing with messy winter weather or fun outdoor activities to keep kids active, Canadian Tire has everything you need to Bring On Winter this year, so you can embrace all the fun and excitement the season has to offer.

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