How To Shovel Snow From Your Driveway

With snow soon to be in the forecast, now is the time for you to get familiar with some tips on properly clearing your driveway. These snow shoveling tips are designed to reduce your workload and keep you healthy at the same time.

Preparing to Shovel the Snow

Before you plan on shoveling snow in the driveway, prepare you body by doing a bunch of stretches so you don't injure yourself lifting those heavy loads of snow. Next, you want to dress in layers and if you start sweating or feel any sorts of pain, take a break and go sit inside for a while until you feel better. Now that you are warmed and rested, get back to shoveling and prepare to stop several times until it is done.

When it comes to snow shoveling tips, waxing the blade of the shovel will help the snow to glide off the surface easier and reduce having to try and shake off all that show off your shovel. The slick surface of the shovel enables you to move lighter piles of snow faster, which can help reduce the chances of getting a back injury. Read our article on how to prevent snow sticking to your shovel to learn more.

Working Around a Car in the Driveway

If you have a car that is parked in the driveway during a snow storm, there is a certain way that you should tackle getting the snow shoveled. The first thing you want to do is start the vehicle with the heat and defroster on, this will allow the windows to defrost without you having to use any extra energy with your ice scraper. Start by shoveling around the driver side and the rear of the vehicle, the goal here is moving just enough snow behind the car that you can move the car back while you work the next section.

Once the car is moved, clear away the section on both sides until you run out of room to back up the vehicle. Leave the car running and work to the front of the driveway, then move the car up as close as you can get it.

Eliminating Double Work

One of the things to consider as you are working your way around the driveway is to eliminate double work. If you simply create a line down the center of the driveway to walk, that snow you just moved has to be moved again eventually. Start shoveling the snow on either side of the driveway, and don't just make a pile along the edge of the driveway because severe wind gusts will blow it right back eventually. Those huge snow piles you are making don't need much to topple over back into areas you just cleared.

Now that you have a slick shovel surface, you want to heave the snow a nice distance from the edge of the driveway. That will reduce the chances of it coming all the way back to the clear driveway surface. This video on shoveling after a big snowfall should help:

The Position of the Driveway Pile

Perhaps the most frustrating part of shoveling the driveway is getting the entire area clear until the snow plow comes by and basically buries you back under several feet of rock hard snow ice mix. The trick to reducing the amount of the pile the snow plow will put at the end of your driveway is tossing your snow into the right side of the end of that driveway. The snow plow will be coming from the left to the right, so use that information to reduce your work load.

Once you get the driveway completely clear to the sidewalk, start moving the snow from the sidewalk to the curb to the right side of the driveway. This might seem like extra work now, but it will seem like a blessing when you don't have to lift that snow the plow brings by that is heavier and full of ice chunks and everything else scrapped up from the roads. If the snow pile you made is to the right, when the plow comes from the left, the snow pushed at the end of your driveway will be significantly less.


There you have it, simple tips to snow shovel your driveway that will allow you to get back inside your warm house in no time at all. If the forecast is calling for a foot of snow or more, you might want to start working these tips after a few inches fall to reduce having to shovel significantly heavier loads each time.

BONUS TIP: If you don't happen have a shovel around, try using a snow blower or leaf blower instead.

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rachel frampton - January 28, 2020

Last Christmas, we had a hard time removing the snow from our driveway. Thank you for these tips; the next time it snows I’ll make sure to start removing the snow by the sidewalk to the curb to the right side of the driveway. These are helpful tips, although I’ve been thinking that maybe it’s best to hire a snowplow service if it gets too difficult.

Rick Davis - February 27, 2020

I liked your tip of waxing the blade of a shovel before shoveling snow. My wife and I are moving to a colder area soon and we were wondering how to shovel snow easier when winter comes. I’ll be sure to tell her that we should wax the blade of the shovel before shoveling snow.


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