Between the frigid cold and snow and ice that cover your sidewalk and driveways, winter can be a tough season for Boulder County homeowners.

Keeping the sidewalk and driveway safe and slip-proof is important. In Boulder county, all sidewalks must legally be cleared of snow and ice within 24 hours after the snowfall stops.

So while snow shovel shopping may not be at the top of your to-do list right now, procrastinating could leave you at the mercy of the flimsy shovels leftover at your local supermarket. But having the right tools make a big difference in getting the job done.

Ineffective snow shovels can cause you to work twice as hard for twice as long — not to mention the lingering back pain the next day! Shoveling snow can be hazardous, so be sure that you invest in the right tools to keep your property safe this winter.

There are quite a few sizes and styles of snow shovels on the market. With so many different products to choose from, it can be overwhelming to know what you’re looking for.

Here’s what you need to know about choosing the most effective snow shovel to keep your property clear and safe all winter long.

Find the Right Shovel for You

Whether you have a rental property with sidewalks or an office building with a parking lot, understanding how the size, shape and material of the shovel will help you figure out what makes the most sense for you.

Here are some of the features to compare in your snow shovel:

  • Ergonomic shovels are generally the best snow shovels because they’re designed to reduce stress on your shoulders and lower back. These have a bent, offset handle, which helps reduce back strain while you’re using it.
  • Scoop shovels are designed for lifting and tossing snow (usually in smaller areas, like a sidewalk or small driveway)
  • Pusher shovels work like bulldozers and push snow in the direction in which you push the shovel. These are better for heavier snows so you don’t have to lift the snow to remove it.

Different Sizes of Snow Shovels

Depending on the size of the area you need to shovel, the right shovel size can make a big impact on time and effort.

18-inch width

  • These shovels are small and manageable, and best for small jobs like a house sidewalk or a small driveway that can be finished quickly.
  • It has a smaller blade than 24-inch snow shovels, which makes it easier to handle and easier on your back.

24-inch width

  • These relatively large, broad shovels are better for picking up snow and moving it than for simply pushing it aside.
  • These are a good size for house projects, especially for homes with bigger sidewalks and driveways.

30-inch width

  • These are ideal for pushing and scraping ice as well as shoveling snow.
  • The bigger-sized shovels will get more done with each scoop or push.
  • This is a good size for long driveways and long stretches of sidewalks.
  • A smaller shovel will take too long and end up being more work than it needs to be.

What Shapes Do Shovels Come In?

There are many features to consider when investing in your snow shovel. The handle can impact how effective and efficient the shovel is shape of the shovel itself will change what jobs it does best.

Square nose

  • These small, square shovels with relatively sharp corners are great for scraping off tough ice.

Round nose

  • With a pointed, tapered tip, these shovels cut through the frozen burn that snow shovels can often leave behind

Handles

Handles are made with different shapes with different purposes, so finding the right fit can help cut down on a sore back and back and exhaustion.

Folding Handles

Ergonomic

  • These handles are recommended for comfort, as they’re engineered and designed to minimize strain and work with your body’s natural postures and movements.

Dual handles

  • These shovels have an extra secondary handle that can give you better leverage and balance out the weight between both your hands and both sides of your body.

Top 5 Shovels of 2020

Now that you know what different handles and shapes of shovels can do for you, we’ve gathered our top picks. We did all the work for you to round up the best products for you and your property’s needs. Make cleaning up after winter storms easier with the best snow shovels for the 2020 winter season.

1. The True Temper 18-inch Ergonomic Mountain Mover is a manageable size and perfectly balances the weight of snow. With a curved shaft, it creates less strain on your back, and makes moving snow easier by reducing the force you need to toss snow away. It’s the best of every feature, making it a great tool to clear off sidewalks, steps, and patios.

#2. The Manplow Snow Pusher is a powerful shovel for bigger jobs like clearing large driveways. With an extra wide bed, this will collect more snow as you push, allowing you to accomplish the job with fewer sweeps of the area.

#3. The True Temper 20-Inch Aluminum Combo Shovel is meant for pavement and flat surfaces that aren’t vulnerable to scratches. Its aluminum scoop can scratch or get caught on uneven ground of patios, but on sidewalks, this shovel will get the job done.

This design also features a curved handle for extra ergonomic support, and its metal scoop slides smoothly under compacted snow. It has the capacity of a scoop shovel and the functionality of a pusher, and since its heavy duty, its also heavier than some of the other picks in our list.

#4. The Ergonomically Designed 2-Handled Snow Shovel is a new take on the classic shovel. The placement of the second handle is designed specifically for maximum comfort and ease of use. Your back will thank you after using this shovel, which greatly reduces the strain on your lower back while shoveling.

#5 While this technically isn’t a shovel, the BackEZ EziMate tool handle converts virtually any shovel into an ergonomic powerhouse shovel. It’s an extra handle that attaches anywhere on the shovel’s shaft, and because of its placement, will allow you to stand up straighter and put less strain on your back.

The job of shoveling becomes more evenly distributed between both your hands, lessening your risk of injury and the energy exertion.

Hire a Snow Removal Service

Snow removal can be exhausting and overwhelming, especially if your property has high square footage. Shoveling can also take precious time out of your day that you could be spending attending to your business or property instead.

As a homeowner or property, manager, there’s already so much on your plate. Hiring a snow contractor will save you time and money, so that you can focus your energy on what matters.

Snow removal contractors will take the grunt labor out of maintaining your property, so you can say goodbye to back pain caused by tedious shoveling. Finding the right contractor can be a battle all on its own, so be sure to check out our guide on how to choose a snow removal contractor >