Digging Out From A Snowstorm: Know Your Shovels

Need a new shovel, or an additional one? You can save a lot of time, effort, and pain by choosing the one that’s right for you. Our colleagues over at Consumer Reports did the heavy lifting, evaluating different types of shovels and what kinds of people and snow they’re most appropriate for.

Things to keep in mind when shovel-shopping: materials, blade width, handle size, handle length, ergonomics. Different kinds of shovels are best suited to different tasks. Are there just a few inches of powder on your sidewalk? A shovel with a wide, shallow, plastic blade will do the trick. Did the town plow dump several feet of slush-infested wet snow at the foot of your driveway? You’re going to need a bigger, more solid shovel.

Ergonomic shovels may not be all that we imagine: in particular, the ones with a dramatic dogleg curve in the handle actually force you into holding the shovel in a particular way, which may not be the best grip for you.

Remember to watch for signs of fatigue and dehydration, pace yourself, and use good technique when shoveling.

Find the best snow shovel [Consumer Reports]

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  1. theoriginalcatastrophegirl says:

    1963 helpful hints from heloise suggests spraying the blade of your snow shovel with non stick cooking spray to reduce ice buildup. i have no idea if this works but if i ever have enough snow to shovel i really want to try it

  2. Psylent1 says:

    Also keep in mind that when you use the shovel, you will be wearing your winter coat and gloves. I have seen several shovels where the D-handle was too small for my hand in my winter gloves. And when you are all bundled up, you don’t have the same range of motions as you would normally, so some ergonomic shovels are almost useless because their ergonomics didn’t take your winter coat into consideration.