As winter arrives, it’s important to care for your driveway during the cold weather. Snow and ice can wreak havoc on concrete surfaces, leading to costly repair bills. Ice can also lead to falls and injuries. Fortunately, you can take steps to keep your driveway safe in winter.
Ways to Keep Your Driveway Safe in Winter
Choose the Right Tools
Winter weather can be unpredictable, so it’s essential to have the right equipment to keep your driveway safe and accessible year-round. Shovels are lightweight, inexpensive, and require minimal storage space in a garage or shed. They don’t need fuel or electricity and won’t cause pollution while in use. On the other hand, shoveling is tedious work that could require several hours of manual labor, depending on the snowfall. A wide shovel is typically best for driveways because it allows you to move more material in one sweep. Large metal blades help scrape away thick layers of ice that may have formed on the surface.
If you regularly deal with heavy snowfall, an electric or gas-powered snowblower will save time and energy when clearing your drive.
Wear Warm Clothing
When clearing the driveway, wear warm gear for working outdoors in cold weather. The proper clothing protects against frostbite, hypothermia, and other dangers of extreme temperatures.
A key piece of apparel for anyone outside in cold weather is a heavy coat or jacket made from thick, insulating material like wool or down. Wear thermal underwear under regular clothing for added protection from the elements. Dressing in layers helps maintain body temperature because clothing can trap heat and keep it close to the body.
In addition to warm clothes, wear protective gloves and warm boots when shoveling snow or completing another task outdoors during cold weather.
Keep Your Driveway Safe in Winter: Clear Snow Regularly
To keep your driveway safe, clear snowfall regularly. Keeping the driveway clear makes it easier to travel the surface and prevents damage caused by snow that thaws and refreezes in areas with poor drainage. Invest in a quality snow shovel or blower, and clear the driveway as soon as possible after it snows.
Apply Ice Melt
If your driveway becomes icy during winter storms, apply an ice melt product such as rock salt or calcium chloride. These products break up existing ice and make removing what remains with a shovel easier. Read the instructions carefully before applying the product, and use appropriate safety gear when handling these materials.
Inspect the Drains to Keep Your Driveway Safe in Winter
Inspect your driveway regularly during winter, including the drains around its perimeter. Clogged drains can lead to pooling water, which turns into ice when temperatures drop below freezing. Use a drain snake or shop vac to remove accumulated debris and ensure proper water drainage from the driveway surface.
Winter can be a challenging season for driveway maintenance, with snowfall and icy conditions quickly transforming a smooth driveway into a hazard-ridden surface. Following these steps, you can keep your driveway safe throughout the colder months. When dealing with hazardous materials like rock salt or calcium chloride, follow directions carefully and wear appropriate safety gear. With a bit of preparation now, you’ll be able to enjoy a safe and worry-free winter.