How to Snow Blow a Driveway

Man using snowblower to clear driveway of fresh snow

Thanks to the emergence of snow blowers, maintaining your driveway throughout the winter has never been easier. Long ago, you’d have to spend hours shoveling after every heavy snowfall. Then, in 1952, Toro introduced the revolutionary Snow Hound snow blower, and later the lightweight Snow Pup snow blower in 1962.

After that, winter homeownership was never the same. Simply fire up your snow blower, seek out some snow, and let the machine do all the heavy lifting. But is snow blowing really that easy? Let’s look at how to snow blow a driveway.

Six Simple Tips on How to Use a Snow Blower Effectively

Without a doubt, it’s easier to snow blow than to shovel — especially when dealing with deep or heavy snow. However, there are some nuances around how to use a snow blower and how to snow blow a driveway. Here are six tips to follow:

  1. Don’t fight the wind. Whenever possible, point the chute downwind so that the wind helps you blow the snow.
  2. Don’t snow blow perpendicularly. It is usually best to move up and down the length of a driveway, not perpendicular.
  3. Start upwind if there’s strong crosswinds. In strong crosswinds, start on the upwind side and then work downwind.
  4. Throw snow to the right if there’s little wind. If there’s little or no wind, first cut a path down the center of the driveway and then work in “circles” so that you can keep the chute throwing to one side. This pattern allows you to always throw snow to the right and reduces the need to change the direction of the chute.
  5. Throw snow as far into the yard as possible. Throwing snow only to the edge of a driveway or walkway will lead to high snow banks and will make it more difficult to remove snow during the next snowstorm.
  6. Keep up with the snowfall. Most of the time, it is easier and faster to clear six inches of snow twice than 12 inches of snow once.

How to Stay Safe While Using a Snow Blower

While it’s great to save time and effort by using a snow blower on your driveway, nothing is more important than your safety — and that of your family. That’s why it’s essential to snow blow safely and mindfully, following these safety precautions:

  1. Keep the area clear. Make sure people, kids and pets are far away from the area you’re about to snow blow.
  2. Clear objects that might be under the snow. The morning newspaper or the dog chain love to hide on driveways, buried under snow.
  3. Don’t wear loose-fitting clothing. Items like scarfs and flowy jackets may get caught in the machine if you’re not careful.
  4. Turn off the machine when stepping away. If you’re leaving the operator position for more than a few seconds, it’s best to cut the power.
  5. NEVER use a hand or foot to clear clogged snow from the snow blower. If the chute is clogged, TURN OFF the engine, WAIT 10 SECONDS and then use the chute clean-out tool or a broom handle to remove the clog.

Use Your Snow Blower With Confidence!

Now that you’ve learned how to use a snow blower and how to snow blow a driveway safely, you’re ready to take on whatever snowfall Old Man Winter throws at you! 

Want more snow blowing tips? Check out Toro’s Help Center for information, videos, maintenance tips and more!

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