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How To Operate a Snowplow?

How To Operate a Snowplow

With winter’s arrival in full force, it is time to get your snow-fighting operations into gear. Snowplows are an essential component of any successful operation and knowing how to operate them properly can help you save time and money while helping keep your customers happy.

This post will break down some basics on operating a snowplow, including how to operate it and the best practices in using it.

You may not know this but there are two types of snowplows: blade-style and rotary-style. There are pros and cons to each style, so we will cover that too!  so, if you want to learn more about how to operate a snow plow you should read this blog post! so that you can stay ahead of the curve when it comes to handling winter weather.

Learn the Snowplow Basics

Common Mistakes When Using a Snowplow and How to Avoid Them

A snowplow is an essential piece of equipment for clearing snow from properties. In some instances, they are also used to push or pull heavy objects away from a construction site so that the work can continue unimpeded.

Snowplows are typically fitted onto trucks, buses, heavy equipment such as bulldozers and graders, military tanks like the M60 Patton tank series for example to improve traction on winter roads when the vehicle is towing a trailer, or as an attachment for fire engines.

Blade-style plows and rotary styles have different purposes but both types use the same basic principle in how they work. The blade style is used for pushing snow, while the rotary-style can be used to push and pull objects.

Blade-style plows are made up of a series of fixed blades that are raised by hydraulic power from the ground they rest on. They slice through slushy or compacted crusty snow easily, providing a clean surface for vehicles to drive on.

Rotary-style plows use a rotating head that can push and pull objects even when the ground has been frozen solid. This style of snowplow also employs heavy blades, though they are not fixed so adjustments can be made as needed depending on the amount of resistance from the material they are moving.

Blade-style plows have a lot of advantages, including simplicity and durability. They also offer maximum visibility for the operator because there is no snow obscuring their view. Blade-style plows do not require any additional components like a blade guard to protect them from debris or other hazards on site, so they are easier to maintain.

However, rotary-style snowplows have their own advantages as well. They are much more efficient at moving large quantities of material because they use two opposing blades to push and pull. This style also can handle various materials that may be encountered on site due to its versatility in design. Those who prefer this type will find they are more maneuverable and can be used for tasks that blade-style models cannot.

How To Operate a Snowplow?

There are a few ways to operate a snowplow:

  • First, you must clear the snow from the ground of any vegetation that has grown there. You can use a shovel, but a leaf blower will work just as well. If you do not remove the plants before plowing, they will get buried under the snow and start to suffocate. In some areas, this is against the law because it damages the plants.
  • Research whether you are allowed to plow in public spaces like sidewalks and parking lots. In certain locations, you will need a permit for this activity.
  • Make sure that you have enough fuel in your vehicle before starting up your plow for the day.
  • You will have to use a lot of fuel if you are covering a large area with snow, so it is important that you do not get stranded out in the cold while waiting for someone else to come and refuel your plow. The same goes for any equipment or machinery that you need later during the process; make sure that you have everything that you need before starting out.
  • To plow, use the chains on your tires to grip onto the snow and pull it towards you. It is helpful if you tilt your vehicle back a little so that gravity can do its job and bring more of the snow into contact with the plow blades this way.
  • The next time you are faced with a snow plow vs snow blower job, remember how to operate the vehicle responsibly and safely!

Safety Tips for Operating a Snowplow

  1. The most important thing to remember when operating a snowplow is safety.
  2. Make sure you can see what is in front of the truck before you start driving.
  3. When you are driving, make sure the blade is always on top of the snow and not pushing it into other cars or pedestrians.
  4. Never turn too sharply – this will cause your blade to cut through the snow and create chunks that could damage your vehicle or others.
  5. If there’s ice on the ground, do not use your plow to push it out of place because this will just end up making more work for yourself.
  6. Finally, if possible, try not to use a plow after dark since headlights will not be able to show any obstacles ahead of time.

Common Mistakes When Using a Snowplow and How to Avoid Them

Do not use a snowplow in the winter if you must go more than 20 feet. Snowplows are hard on engine and can be difficult with turning because they are so wide, which is why it is best for just short distances at slow speeds–especially when there’s ice on the ground. It might take some practice with turning before you can become a pro.

When Should You Use a Snowplow?

Just use a snowplow when you do not have to go very far because it can be hard on the engine.


Knowing how to operate a snowplow can be helpful in many situations. For example, you may need to clear the driveway of your home after all that winter weather has accumulated and it is too cold for anyone else to do it.

We hope that we have helped you understand more about what goes into operating a snowplow so that your business can be successful during all seasons!

Sandy Jensen
Sandy Jensen is the founder of OrganizeWithSandy and Works with Champalimaud Design where she curates and creates fresh ideas for designing and styling your life.

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