A snow shovel is a useful tool that can clear snow from driveways, sidewalks, patios, decks, and other areas of your yard. To help you find a snow shovel that’s right for you, the This Old House Reviews team researched the best snow shovels on the market. Here are our top picks.
Trazon Snow Shovel
This snow shovel has a medium capacity for snow removal with its 16-inch size. It has a D-handle at the top for your dominant hand and a foam grip towards the blade so that your second hand doesn’t slip while you’re holding it. The handle’s length is also adjustable, allowing people of different heights to use the tool and making it easy to store.
The Snowplow “The Original Snow Pusher”
This traditional snow pusher has a curved blade that’s long and skinny. Its 36-inch length is great for pushing heavy amounts of snow off of large areas like a driveway or deck. This lightweight tool has a plastic blade and fiberglass handle and can be flipped over and used as a chisel to break up tightly packed snow.
Manplow 42-Inch Revolution Snow Pusher
This snow pusher has a blade that’s 42 inches wide and it has a U-shaped handle, allowing the bar to touch the blade twice instead of just once. The bar is made of heavy-duty metal and it has a second handle closer to the blade that you can grip onto to help you lift a full shovel of snow.
Snow Joe SJ-SHLV01 Shovelution Strain-Reducing Snow Shovel
This snow shovel has an 18-inch blade and all-steel construction. It has a sharp edge along the bottom of the blade to help with scraping off packed-on snow or ice. The bar splits in half to give you a handle at the top and a handle closer to the bottom so that you can get the leverage you need for lifting and tossing snow.
Lifeline Aluminum Sport Utility Shovel
This small shovel is meant for areas that don’t receive a lot of snow. It has a lightweight aluminum construction and detaches into three pieces so that you can store it away until you need to use it. It’s available in six colors and can adjust from 21 inches to 32 inches.
Subzero Hopkins 17211 SubZero Auto Emergency Snow Shovel
This scoop shovel has a deep but short blade. It has a D-handle at the top of its short bar and a foam grip near the blade for your second hand. Because of how short the handle is, it’s best for removing snow off of cars or other pieces of furniture in your yard. Additionally, it can easily fit into any garage or shed when it’s not in use.
The Snowcaster 36UPH Snow Shovel
This tool is more of a snow pusher because of its curved and wide blade. Like the Snowplow and Manplow snow pushers in this review, you can use this 36-inch snow pusher to push several inches of snow off of a large area. It’s available in four sizes and has a lightweight plastic handle and blade and a durable metal bar.
Factors To Consider Before Buying a Snow Shovel
The snow shovel you need will largely depend on how much snowfall you see in a given year. Keep reading to learn about some important factors that will help you find a model that’s right for you.
Type of Snow Shovel
Snow shovels can be divided into three categories: traditional, push, and combination.
A traditional snow shovel has an almost flat 18- to 24-inch rectangular blade. It’s best for moving snow in smaller areas that a pusher can’t reach.
Compared to traditional shovels, pushers have a much larger blade that’s curved. They’re efficient at plowing large amounts of snow quickly because of their size.
The blade on a combination shovel is a little wider and more curved than the blade on a traditional shovel, making it good for both scooping snow and pushing it away.
There are two parts to a snow shovel: the blade and the handle. Each part is made of a different material.
Most snow shovel blades are made of steel, aluminum, or plastic. Steel and aluminum blades are lightweight, but they’re strong and sharp, allowing them to easily scrape packed-on snow or ice. However, they can scratch wooden or stone surfaces. If you’re trying to clear a wooden or stone surface, a more affordable and lightweight shovel with a plastic blade may be a better option.
The handle can be made of steel, aluminum, fiberglass, wood, or plastic. Steel and aluminum are strong and can handle the weight of a lot of snow, but they’re more prone to getting cold to the touch during cold weather.
Fiberglass and plastic are more lightweight, but fiberglass can crack if left out in the sun and plastic can’t hold as much weight as other materials. Wood is a good middle ground in terms of strength, but it can rot, warp, or splinter.
Holding a snow shovel properly will prevent you from straining your back, so consider looking for one with an ergonomic handle. To use a snow shovel, place one hand as close to the blade as possible and the other hand on the handle at the top. Most handles are straight, but occasionally you’ll find an ergonomic shovel that has a curved handle designed to prevent you from bending and straining your back.
Additionally, some shovels have a second handle closer to the blade to give you more leverage and lifting power. Shovels with a D-shaped handle are comfortable to hold and some shovels have padded handles for more grip.
Most snow shovels will have blades between 12 and 30 inches. Smaller blades are good for scooping up snow and larger blades are best for pushing snow out of the way. If you’re just trying to clear high-traffic areas like driveways and sidewalks, you may want a shovel with a larger blade. However, if your area didn’t receive much snow, a shovel with a smaller blade may be a better option.
Where You Live
Consider how much snow your area usually receives during the winter months. If you don’t get a lot of snow, you may only need a small shovel. However, if you live in an area that regularly experiences snow, consider investing in a large shovel or pusher. You may also want to buy a smaller shovel so that you’re prepared with a variety of snow removal equipment for varying amounts of snowfall.
Frequently Asked Questions
Can I purchase a snow shovel with wheels?
Yes. Some snow shovels have wheels, allowing you to clear a large area of snow after a snowstorm. They’re faster than manually scooping and dumping snow, and they reduce back strain by preventing you from having to lift a shovel repeatedly.
What is an electric snow shovel?
An electric snow shovel works similarly to a manual snow shovel in that you scrape it across the ground to clear the area of snow. It has a motorized paddle that spins in a circle, sucks up snow, and shoots it back out. Similar to snow shovels with wheels, electric snow shovels require less manual labor on the user’s part.
What other equipment can I use to remove snow?
If you’re looking for another snow removal option, consider investing in a snow blower. A snow blower sucks snow in and shoots it back out through a chute, clearing multiple pounds of snow per minute. Snow blowers are available in gas- and electric-powered models and their powerful engines make them a good option for heavy-duty use.
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