FEBRUARY 25, 2022
You’ve got your jackets for fall and heavier coats as you move into winter, along with gloves, hats, scarves — all those must-have winter accessories that’ll get you from the house to the car and give you the ability to warmly go about your day. Before winter weather really hits, however, make sure you also have the right winter tools for the job. If you live in a snowy climate, you should have these four pieces of snow removal equipment in your garage to clear your property of snow and ice.
Make quick work of snow-covered sidewalks and walkways by choosing a shovel that’s comfortable to use. Here are a few considerations when purchasing a snow shovel:
Find a shovel that’s long enough so you don’t have to hunch over but short enough so you can easily lift snow.
Look for a comfortable, ergonomic grip on the shovel handle.
Choose your material. A metal shovel can hold more snow, but a plastic blade may be easier to maneuver.
Pick your blade. Consider a flat blade if you have lots of snow to shovel. Rounder blades may be easier to use in areas where you’re moving smaller amounts of snow off a walkway, while ice breaker shovels with more pointed blades can chip up thick ice.
Snow and ice can eventually cause leaks in your roof. A roof rake helps break up ice dams — those areas around gutters that accumulate ice, effectively damming up snowmelt from running off the roof. Here’s what to look for in a roof rake:
Make sure you can scrape off your roof while standing on the ground.
Choose your blade sizes and materials. Lightweight aluminum rakes work well; just make sure you gently scrape snow, and leave an inch or so on the roof to avoid damaging any flashing or shingles in the process.
Choose a roof rake with a telescoping handle.
Hire out the job to a professional snow removal service if your home has more than one story. A company can safely clean your roof with the right tools.
Ice scraper tools can remove both thick ice and snow buildup. Features to consider with sidewalk and driveway ice scraper tools include:
A rust-proof metal blade or aluminum scraping head that allows you to chop through ice as needed.
While snow-blowing equipment doesn’t make sense in Southern climes that get the odd snowfall once every few years, areas that get a foot or more each year need heavier machine power. When selecting a model, keep in mind the following:
Decide if you want an electric, battery, or gas-powered snow blower. Electric models can clear under a foot of snow and don’t require the maintenance of a gas-powered version, while battery-powered models don’t have the power of a gas snow blower.
Choose your size. A single-stage snow blower scrapes the snow and throws it elsewhere, while a double-stage version is often-self-propelled and uses a slower-moving auger that churns up snow and ice. A three-stage blower is almost 50% faster than a two-stage and is ideal for a larger area.
Understand the type of snow you have. A single-stage blower may work great on powdery snow, but you’ll want to choose a double-stage snow blower for wet, sticky snow.
How do you keep your home comfortable and safe throughout the colder months?
Maintain your HVAC system, and service your water heater before winter hits.
Use a smart home thermostat to keep your home cozy on cold days.
Add flood detectors to attics, basements, and near water sources in case of a burst pipe or water leaks.
Clean chimneys and fireplaces.
Install smoke detectors and carbon monoxide detectors in your home.
Repair gutters and spouts.
Waterproof those areas more susceptible to moisture.
Once you’ve got your snow removal equipment, you’ll be ready to enjoy the winter. Read more about home security products and home maintenance tips at the Brinks Home™ Blog.
Allison Clark is a senior writer for Brinks Home. She enjoys educating others on the benefits of smart home security and using technology to simplify everyday life.
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