5 Practical Low-Fuel Snow Removal Options

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You can remove snow without having to burn gasoline. Here are 5 ways to clear snow while also being sensitive to the environment.


shoveling snow illustration

A dusting of fluffy snow is a beautiful sight, but when your house is buried in it for a few days, it becomes a white nightmare. Snow blowers help with removal, however they aren’t very environmentally friendly. If you want to go green while removing the snow on your property, here are five alternatives that won’t negatively impact the planet.

1. Try some elbow grease

That’s right, good old-fashioned elbow grease is the most eco-friendly way to get rid of your snow problem. With that said, there are some tools that will make the job easier. When you are getting ready for winter, make sure a snow shovel and ice breaker are on your preparedness list.

Snow shovels come in all shapes and sizes, but shovels with ergonomically shaped handles will give your lower back a break. In addition, the bigger the shovel face, the more snow you’ll have to push with each pass. Smaller is better in this case.  A steel icebreaker or scraper bar will make short work of that pesky ice.

Relying on your community is a good strategy when you’re removing snow manually. Snowfall is a good chance to help your neighbors and get to know them too.

2. Give an electric shovel a shot

Part snow shovel, part snow blower, an electric shovel is the prefect green approach to snow removal. Electric shovels are about the size of a standard snow shovel and have a motor attachment that does the scooping and shoveling work for you. All you need is an extension cord and a warm jacket.

3. Use an eco-friendly ice-melt

In the world of ice-melts, there are only a couple that are planet and pet friendly. Although salt is the most popular, it also destroys your grass and is harmful to waterways and animals during snow runoff.

If you want all the ice-melting capabilities of salt without the harmful side effects, look no further than ice-melts with magnesium. Calcium magnesium acetate is biodegradable and has a low corrosion rate. Likewise, magnesium chloride is safer around pets, safer for the environment, and your lawn.

4. Go the hybrid snow blower route

There’s a difference between a few inches of snow and a few feet. If you’re staring down a driveway with feet of snow piled on top, a snow blower might just be your only option. Before you go out and buy a gas guzzler, consider a hybrid blower.

Honda and other manufacturers now make snow blowers with gas/electric engines that use a fraction of the fuel of standard blowers. In addition, hybrid snow blowers also emit 30 percent fewer emissions.

5. Think snow safety

When it’s too cold to shovel snow for an extended period, you might just need to make the snow safer to traverse. Spike shoe covers make walking around your property in icy, snowy conditions much safer.

To increase the traction in the snow while preserving your wintry curb appeal, you can sprinkle light-colored sand on your driveway and walkways. Sand is harmless to the environment and it’s easy to sweep up once the snow melts.

If you’re ready to get your snow problem under control without harming the environment, then keep in mind these snow removal tips.


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Cate Morgan-Harlow

Cate Morgan-Harlow is an all arounder, writing about how-to, DIY, and design with gusto. She is a shadowy figure with a mysterious past.