Tips for Safe Snow and Ice Removal

Think snowblower safety:

Be aware of obstructions or objects that may be under the snow and remove any objects that could become projectiles if thrown by the blower. If you have an electric snowblower, make sure that the cord is out of the path you’re blowing and make sure it’s plugged in safely with an extension cord intended for outside use. Be sure that you properly maintain your snow blower and never ever try to clear ice blocks with your hand. A very good friend of mine lost a few fingertips this way! For light snow fall consider using your leaf blower.

Did you know that ice dams are a leading cause of homeowner claims in the winter?

To prevent ice damming, insulate your attic, seal any openings where air could escape to the attic, improve ventilation in the attic, clear gutters and downspouts and remove snow accumulation from your roof after a storm. Ask a professional or use a snow rake. Avoid using ladders in icy conditions and be careful that you don’t damage the roof covering while removing the snow.

If you have to manually remove snow, keep the following tips in mind:

Consider pre-treating your walkways and paved surfaces with an anti-icing product to make snow removal easier. Make sure that you are physically fit and prepared for physically strenuous activity and warm up those muscles- lower back strains are the most common injuries. Consider using a light weight, ergonomic shovel and make multiple trips during a storm event. Push the snow with the shovel rather than lifting, keep the shovel close to your body to prevent over-reaching and take frequent breaks.Make sure that you’re appropriately dressed in layers so that you can stay at a comfortable body temperature while you work and stay hydrated!

Need a quick defrost?

For a fast defrost of windows, try using rubbing alcohol. Spray thoroughly and dry with an old towel. This will keep your windows from fogging too! If you’re fresh out of rubbing alcohol and clear alcohol will work (hand-sanitizer anyone?)