Planning For Snow Removal
Planning For Snow Removal
Predicting snowfall and putting a snow removal plan into action
As leaves change color and fall to the ground, it’s not uncommon to start thinking about what winter will bring. For some, it may mean hot cocoa and cozy nights spent indoors, but for others, it means shoveling snow and dealing with the hassles of snow removal and everything else that can come with winter weather. Depending on where you live, snowfall can either be a minor inconvenience or a major event.
With heavy snowfall comes safety and legal concerns to contend with. As a business owner or a homeowner, it’s important to know how much snow to expect so you can plan your snow removal accordingly. We have a few methods that can help you in estimating the amount of snowfall you’ll receive in the winter season.
The Farmer’s Almanac Method
One of the most popular ways to predict how much snow you’ll get in the winter is by using the Farmer’s Almanac method. This method relies on several factors, including the position of the sun and moon, atmospheric conditions, and even animal behavior. While it may sound like a lot of hocus pocus, the Farmer’s Almanac has been fairly accurate in its predictions over the years.
To use this method, you can search for the extended winter forecast for the region you live in. While the extended winter forecast is updated every year it also breaks down the forecast by month and in week intervals to help you predict snowfall over time or when to expect heavy snowfalls. This can help you plan for snow removal services or determine when you may need them.
The National Weather Service Method
For those looking for a more scientific approach, check out the National Weather Service’s (NWS) winter outlook maps. These maps are updated regularly and show predicted snowfall amounts for different regions of the United States.
To use this method, simply go to the NWS website and select “Climate Prediction” for long-term views or you can choose shorter intervals (from hours to days) by looking at “National Forecast Maps.” Both options allow you to scroll through the various maps and precipitation forecasts to take a look at what it shows for your area.
The NOAA Method
Another option is to check out the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s (NOAA) winter prediction center. These maps are similar to those from the NWS but also take into account things like El Niño/La Niña conditions (which can have an impact on winter weather patterns).
Geography and Patterns
It may seem obvious, but knowing where you’re located geographically and your area’s normal weather patterns can also help you in planning for winter snowfall.
One of the biggest factors in determining how much snow you’ll get is where you live. If you’re in an area that gets a lot of lake-effect snow, for example, you can expect heavier snowfalls than average. Areas downwind of large lakes, like the Great Lakes or Lake Champlain, are especially susceptible to lake-effect snow. That’s because as cold air moves over the warmer waters of the lakes, it picks up moisture, which then falls as snow when it reaches land.
Another factor to consider is elevation. The higher you are, the more likely you are to get significant snowfall. This is because cold air is denser than warm air, so it tends to sink toward lower elevations. So, if you live in a mountainous area or somewhere with a higher elevation you usually can expect to see more snow. And with more snowfall during winter the greater the need for snow removal than your low-lying neighbors.
Trying to understand weather patterns may seem like a lot to take on, but every season has a certain amount of precipitation you can expect. This is no exception during the winter months. For example, if an area is experiencing a La Niña weather pattern, this usually means colder temperatures and above-average snowfall.
For business owners with parking lots or homeowners with driveways to plow this means preparing for winter storms and heavy snow. If you’re someone who doesn’t look forward to snow shoveling, you may want to consider snow removal services.
On the other hand, if an area is experiencing an El Niño weather pattern, that usually means above-average temperatures and less snowfall so you’ll be dealing with less snow. Less snow may mean less snow to remove during the winter season which depending on your snow removal contract may be more advantageous.
Why Snow Removal Matters
Predicting the weather may be the job of meteorologists, but having access to weather resources can help you not only understand seasonal forecasts but can help you determine if snow removal services are right for you. Here are a few 4 reasons for business owners to consider investing in snow removal services.
1 – It Can Help Prevent Accidents
One of the most important reasons to keep up with your snow removal is to prevent accidents. Slips and falls are common in the winter, but they can often be prevented by keeping walkways and parking lots clear of snow and ice. In addition, if you have stairs leading up to a door, it’s important to make sure they’re clear so people can’t fall and hurt themselves.
2- Helps Protect Your Property
Another reason to keep up with your snow removal is to protect your business. With snowfall comes the obligation of snow removal. Failing to properly clear a walkway or plow a parking lot can result in injuries and damage not only to your customers but to employees as well.
This scenario is one many business owners hope to avoid. By hiring a professional snow removal company, you can work to avoid possible lawsuits and injuries on your property, thus protecting your business and your investment.
Having a good snow removal company that also has landscape experience can also be important for businesses and homeowners. Protecting your landscape from skid steers, calcium chloride, and the harsh winter temperatures can prevent damage you may uncover in the spring. In our article, Protect Your Landscaping From Snow Removal you can find helpful tips on how you can protect your landscaping and when to call the experts in for help.
3 – Avoid Getting Fined
In some cities and towns, laws require homeowners and businesses alike to clear sidewalks within a certain timeframe after a snowfall. If you don’t comply, this can mean a fine by the city. Staying on top of your snow removal to avoid any penalties.
If you’re considering snow removal services, be sure to ask if snow shoveling sidewalks are included.
4 – Keep Your Business Open Even When It Snows
For a business that relies on foot traffic, like a retail store or restaurant, it’s especially important to keep sidewalks clear during snowy weather. Customers won’t want to walk through several inches of snow to get to your door, whether it’s to avoid falling on ice or simply to avoid getting their feet cold and wet, business owners can be expected to shovel sidewalks and clear their driveways.
To avoid lost customers and revenue, it’s best to have a plan in place for removing the snow quickly after each winter storm. Some snow removal services include employing a skid steer to effectively and efficiently remove snow from a parking lot and driveway, snow shoveling, and salting walkways. If these services are important to you and you don’t want to pull out snow blowers or work in colder temperatures, consider hiring an expert who can help keep your location clean and accessible.
Put Together A Snow Removal Plan
There are many good reasons to ensure you’re staying on top of your snow removal as both a business owner and a homeowner. Not only will it help keep people safe, but it will also protect your property. Now, let’s take a look at how to create a snow removal plan.
Creating A Snow Removal Plan
The best way to ensure that your property is protected from the winter weather is to create a plan for snow removal and ice control. This can be an intimidating process and may seem time-consuming, but it’s a step you shouldn’t miss.
Removing snow can be challenging and time-consuming. Having the right plan in place to assist you with ice, snowfall and salting can save you time, and money in the long run.
In our article, Do You Have a Snow and Ice Management Plan, we layout considerations for you to ask or walk through with your snow removal contractor. We also have recommendations on how to execute a good contract to avoid any issues down the road.
By following these tips, you can create a plan that will work for you, make snow removal less of a hassle, and help keep your property safe all winter long. Don’t forget, depending on where you live, your snow removal expenses may also be tax deductible!
Get Ready For Snow!
While winter precipitation often has us dreaming of summer, snowfall during winter is a matter of life for many who live in colder climates. Having a sound strategy to remove snow can protect not only your business but your house as well.
Having a sound understanding of weather patterns, geography, and winter weather resources available to you will not help you in knowing if winters will be cold or mild, but it will help you plan for ice removal if you’ll need someone to plow a driveway or helping you get a head start on rounding up all of the required supplies on hand.
Keep all of these factors in mind as winter approaches so you can be prepared for whatever Mother Nature throws your way. The snow removal process doesn’t need to be a hassle. If you have any additional questions or would like to schedule snow removal services for this winter, contact All Metro Service Companies today. We know snow, and are happy to help!
on all Services
Use the form below to request a free estimate on any of our services.