When winter comes and it starts to snow, shoveling your driveway becomes a priority. There are two main ways that people shovel snow. They either wait until the snow stops, or they shovel while it is still snowing.
There are so many reasons why someone might shovel their driveway while the snow is still falling. In many cases, it is extremely beneficial and makes the job easier for you. Should you shovel while the snow is still falling?
Shoveling Driveway While Still Snowing
There are several advantages to consider when you are trying to determine if you should shovel your driveway while it is still snowing.
First, shoveling the snow off your driveway while the snow is still falling reduces how much snow you have to shovel at one time. For example, you might shovel 3 inches twice a day instead of 6 inches once a day.
Shoveling snow as it’s still falling also reduces the risk of being injured. When you are shoveling left snow, it’s not as heavy and there is a lower risk of you harming yourself.
Removing snow while it’s still falling also reduces the chance of the bottom layer freezing and turning into ice. This will decrease the chance of you slipping and falling on a slick ground.
This will also prevent your cars from being stuck in the driveway because there’s too much snow to get out. When you shovel while the snow is still falling, it doesn’t have a chance to build up behind your tires.
Finally, shoveling snow as it falls also makes it easier for you to put down a deicer. With less snow on the surface, the deicer has a much higher chance of melting the snow and the ice at a faster rate.
Although there are many advantages, there are still some disadvantages to shoveling snow as it’s falling. First, there is the potential that you will be exposed to freezing temperatures more often as you will shovel snow more than one time per day.
Multiple shoveling sessions can also be extremely exhausting. This is because you have to exert physical activity multiple times per day to shovel the snow before it accumulates too much on the ground.
Waiting for the Snow to Stop Falling
There are also multiple advantages to waiting until the snow stops falling to shovel your driveway. The biggest advantage is you don’t need to shovel the snow more than once. You don’t have to go outside and continue to shovel to prevent the snow from building up on the ground.
You also will have a lower chance of being exposed to freezing temperatures for more than you need. Shoveling after the snow stops also saves you time since you don’t have to shovel more than once.
The major disadvantage to waiting for it to stop snowing before shoveling is the amount of snow that will build up. The snow can be really heavy, and you can exert a lot of energy trying to clear your driveway.
There is also a higher chance of your car getting stuck in the snow if you wait for the snow to stop to shovel. The snow can build up around the tires and can start to freeze. This will make it much harder to get your car clear to drive.
If you wait too long, the snow can also be a hazard to anyone walking on the driveway or sidewalk. For instance, if your driveway is covered with inches of snow, you have a higher chance of tripping or slipping because you can’t see the ground.
When is it Best to Shovel While Snowing?
There are a few things you need to take into consideration when determining if it is best to shovel the snow off your driveway while it’s still falling. You need to think about how much snow is supposed to fall and how many days it is going to consistently snow.
If you are expecting a lot of snow or continuous snow over the course of several days, you are going to want to shovel while the snow falls instead of waiting. This can save you from getting your car stuck in your driveway.
When is it Best to Wait?
While in most cases you will have a much better time shoveling the snow while it falls, there are some cases where it makes the most sense to wait until the snow stops.
If there is a forecast of freezing rain after the snow, you should wait to shovel until later. The snow will work as a barrier to deter ice from building up on your driveway. Ice is difficult to remove and dangerous to walk on, so leaving the snow will be beneficial.
It is also best to wait to shovel the snow until after it has stopped if it is really windy outside. The wind will continue to blow snow back onto the driveway and shoveling will basically be useless. Wait until the wind stops to shovel the snow.
How to Stay Safe
Regardless of when you decide to shovel the snow from your driveway, you need to make sure you are safe. Always dress with several layers of clothing, with the layer closest to your body being a thermal garment. Make sure you wear a hat and gloves to protect your hands from the cold and potential injury.
It is also important to make sure you use the right tool when you are shoveling. Use a shovel that is right for your height, so you don’t have to bend over. You will also want to use a shovel that matches your strength. Larger shovels get heavier, making your job much harder.
You will also need to be physically ready to shovel snow. Shoveling snow is considered a high-intensity exercise, meaning it works all of your muscles. Always try to stretch before you start shoveling to reduce the risk of an injury while you are shoveling.
Finally, always make sure you are taking breaks while you are shoveling. If you are getting too cold, go inside. If you are getting too tired, go relax for a while.