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How much room?

Discussion in 'Commercial Snow Removal' started by griffithtlc, Aug 17, 2003.

  1. griffithtlc

    griffithtlc Senior Member
    Messages: 213

    We are new to the snowplow biz this winter. We have done a few residentials with a 4 wheeler, but not with a truck. My question is how much room should you leave between the edge of the driveway and the snow pile that you get? Here in central MN, we have gotten maybe 30 inches of snow last year, and a little more the year before, but we are more than due for a 50 inch winter! We just want to be safe and not have frozen snow piles on the pavement choking their driveway.
  2. JohnnyU

    JohnnyU 2000 Club Member
    Messages: 2,040

    The first few snows of the season are pushed back as far as possible, and feasable. You don't want to have piles right at the end of the driveway, but you also dont want to be at their front window...

    As long as the ground is good and frozen, I usually push back about five or six feet from where I want the last pile to be, sometimes less. We usually get about 30+/- inches per year, but sometimes we get 10 at a time, and then some following a few days later. In this case, it is important to leave your self room to come back for drift cleanups or additional snowfall before a melting cycle.
  3. wyldman

    wyldman Member
    Messages: 3,265

    Push it back as far as possible,as you never know how much room you'll need.If the ground isn't frozen,lift the blade some,and at least get the majority of it as far back as possible.
  4. Mick

    Mick PlowSite.com Veteran
    from Maine
    Messages: 5,546

    Agreed that you want to push back as far as possible. I think you're in the same belt as me as far as snowfall amount - I plan for 76" average for the season. You'll also have to do your planning for piles around what type and location of accounts you have. I usually plan the push so I don't have to worry about what I'm pushing into since there is a lot of wide open space here. If your pushing city business or residential, obviously you'd have other considerations. For an average push of 50', I'll usually push back at least 15-20'. But, also, I don't stack very high so my piles are low and wide. You might come at it from a different perspective - how many "pushes" do you need to allow for? Again, I allow for an average of 6" per push (or snowfall) and base it on 12 pushes per season (6"x12=72" - compare to 76" seasonal average). Now, figuring I can put every other push on top of the one before it, I need to allow for six pushes. Now, obviously, if you're stacking higher, using a loader/backhoe or hauling snow away, you'll need less area. Me - I've learned to keep the tires off the pile.
  5. snowfighterG

    snowfighterG Member
    Messages: 34

    Push It Back!

    Here we get over 150 inches sometimes and pre-planning is the key. I agree you should push it back as far as you can and plan your snow storage spots.When your pushing make sure you lift your blade so not to damage the grass/landscaping etc. sometimes if the area is impossible to push back will us a skid steer to move it somewhere else before it gets frozen.

    Hope This Helps

    Snowfighter G dreams for snow :cool:
  6. cat320

    cat320 2000 Club Member
    Messages: 2,224

    I push back as far as i can in the begining .Beter to do it before in get icy.Unless you plan on moving it with a machine best to do it in the beging.
  7. wxmn6

    wxmn6 PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,037

    Since this will be my first year plowing with full size pickup truck, I am wondering if the truck could leave some ruts on unfrozen ground at the beginning of season? I agree that you should try to push back as much snow as possible at beginning of season, but what about the possibility of creating some ruts? I am not sure about that. :confused:
  8. Chuck Smith

    Chuck Smith 2000 Club Member
    from NJ
    Messages: 2,317

    It comes down to the customer being able to live with the ruts until spring (when you can fix them), or paying an avoidable added expense for you to get a skid steer or other loader in there to stack when you run out of room early.

    I know one member here who will not allow his drivers to push past curbs, because he wants the additional loader work. That is on commercial accounts, not residentials.

    On residentials, when you push back as far as possible, it shows you are experienced, and considered the possibility of running out of room. Then when a loader is 100% necessary, the customer will usually understand the necessary additional cost, because it is clear you did all you could to try and save them that additional cost from the begining.

  9. BRL

    BRL PlowSite.com - Veteran
    Messages: 1,277

    Ditto Chuck's comments about the ruts. $100.00 or so worth of turf repairs in the spring vs. loader work for $200.00 - $300.00 per hour with minimums, I'm pretty sure the clients will choose to accept a few ruts during the winter.

    "I know one member here who will not allow his drivers to push past curbs, because he wants the additional loader work. That is on commercial accounts, not residentials."

    Add me to that list also. My contracts say we will plow the snow with plow trucks, to the curbs and then plow the curb line clean. But if they want us to go past the curbs, that is not what snow plow trucks are designed for, and we'll be happy to bring a loader in to move any snow that needs it. ;) I'm not destroying my trucks, or getting them stuck by driving over curbs just so my customers can avoid paying for the correct equipment for the situation. Generally in this area the snow piles melt before the next storm, so it's rare that it becomes an issue here. Plus most of the commercials have sections without curbs, so we'll make room in those areas whenever possible. If I lived in a high snow area my attitude might be a little different, considering the volume of work we'd be doing.
  10. Chief Plow

    Chief Plow Senior Member
    Messages: 201

    You can never have enough room, because ( unless you have a crystal ball ) you just don't know how much snow you will get. So, push back as far as possible

    Good luck