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Home snow removal Blower vs ATV/Plow vs ???

Discussion in 'Residential Snow Removal' started by mantry, Nov 28, 2005.

  1. mantry

    mantry Junior Member
    Messages: 2

    Howdy, we just moved to a new house that is located north of Salt Lake City in a town called Boutiful. Our home is located on the east bench and sits on the south side of a canyon so it will be nice and shady during the winter. We get a fair amount of snow. We have a 3 car garage in front of the house and then about 350 feet of driveway to the street. The driveway is downhill a little to the street and is 20' wide most of the way.

    At our previous house which was located down in the valley we had just a 12 foot wide 200 foot driveway.

    What we currently have for snow removal is ME and a Shovel, a YardMan 12 HP 2 stage snow blower and a Honda 4Trax 4x2 250cc 4 wheeler with a Cycle Country plow on the front.

    Observations from 12 years at the previous house. A little bit of snow, the ATV works great and is quick. If we get more than about 8" of snow at one time, if it is wet and heavy then the ATV has some trouble pushing that much snow. It has the origional wide soft tires on it and I have chains on the rear, but I loose traction before I run out of power. Also, if I start runing out of room to put the snow at the edge of the driveway then I start having problems. If it gets too deep then I usually use the snow blower but what most people (my brothers) don't understand that walking behind a snow blower covering that much area takes a lot of time.

    So in this situation, what are some better choices????

    Obviously money is a concern, we just built the house and are running low on cash. :)

    Would a 4x4 ATV with a blade on the front be that much better than the 4x2? Enough to warrant the new purchase?

    Would a dedicated small lawn tractor with a snow blower on the front be a better option than the ATV/plow?

    I have a 4x2 Dodge Ram 1500 but don't really think I want to put a plow on the front. Plus the truck is away parked at the airport when I'm out of town each week and also, it needs to be an option that my wife would feel comfortable operating. She does OK on the snowblower and the current ATV.

    What would be next???? A used truck/jeep with a dedicated plow that would just sit the rest of the year?
    A larger tractor with a blade on the back?

    Thanks in advance for all the suggestions and tips.
  2. scholzee

    scholzee Senior Member
    Messages: 243

    You mentioned many options except hiring it out, my thoughts are this year moneys tight. A dedicated truck, new 4 wheeler are all at least a couple thousand. In my area that driveway may go for $350 for the season, and your wife would be thrilled to not have to do it when you are away. It may be the cheapest option for this year and see how it works out and if your not happy you have another year to save up for one of your other options.
  3. I think the atv would be the most fun! I have a plow on mine and I'd rather use that then the snow blower. But in your case the purchase of a new atv would be an expensive route. Since you have a 350' driveway I would think a snow blower would take a long time. If you'd have another use for a vehicle mounted plow, that'd be a good way to go. Or you can still use the atv and just take smaller bites out of the snow. It depends on how much cash you want to spend. Just a minor detail!
  4. mantry

    mantry Junior Member
    Messages: 2

    hired out

    I had thought of the hired out way to go, but didn't really have any idea on how much it would cost. Also, I think someone said that you can pay 2 ways, per season or per plow. Any plus's or minus's either way?

    Also, any comments on upgrading the ATV from 2WD to 4WD? Would the 4WD give us any better performance? The 2WD is GREAT for 2-4" of snow, very efficient and very quick.

    Also, would narrower tires help out better than the big 12" wide ones that are on now? Less surface area for the weight=better traction?

    I could probably put some sand bags for weight on the front and the back to help with traction.

    Thanks again for the suggestions.
  5. 04superduty

    04superduty PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,354

    try windrowing the snow to either side or your drive alittle at a time. dont take huge bites and work the snow over. them just make a couple of passes with your blower to clear the sides up. yes you will be plowing the same area more than once but this way you can see how a typical snow fall is for your new lcation and talk to some neighbors about how past seasons have been. then you can save some $ over the rest of the season and decide what you want to do next season.
    For my drive i dont want to plow it, its a PITA, and i just put a sprinkler system in this august and seeded the yard so i dont want to tear up my new lawn. so i just snow blow it with my little toro 3650. it takes alittle longer than plowing but then i dont have to move vehicles around, and i have to clear my the side walks anyway.
    Last edited: Nov 28, 2005
  6. yes 4x4 will help. My Arctic Cat 250 can push 12'' of snow with no issues and that's not even low or super low gear.

    that's an option too.
  7. damguy

    damguy Junior Member
    Messages: 12

    I made a simple box from plywood and 2"X4" and u-bolt it to the rear rack and add two sand bags filled with about a total of 100lbs of stone. Take smaller bites like 2/3 of the plow tops and push the snow way back if possible beyond the driveway making room for more. Tires are the key to good traction with an ATV and stock tires suck! I never used chains but have always had a 4X4. Aggressive rears with sipes are the key to traction in snow in my experience. You could have your driveway plowed for 14 years for what a new 4X4 ATV would cost.
  8. Detroitdan

    Detroitdan PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,937

    Try not to let it get 8 inches deep. Most plow truck drivers would tell you the same thing, plow with the storm, go out and hit it every 4 inches. Still faster to plow it twice with the ATV than once with a blower.
  9. plowguyva69

    plowguyva69 Junior Member
    Messages: 4

    start knockin her up dem little wons are great for shuvelin

    GIT ER DONE!!!!!purplebou purplebou purplebou :drinkup: