Many surfaces are easy to clear of winter ice and snow because they smooth and flat -- like sidewalks and paved roads. But a gravel driveway requires a different approach. It's difficult to shovel snow and scrape away ice without taking shovels full of gravel way with them. But removing snow and ice from your gravel driveway is important for safe walking and driving during the winter season. With a little patience and the right supplies, this can be done without damaging your driveway.
- Skill level:
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Things you need
- Snow shovel or blower
- Large utility broom
- Sand and rock salt mixture
Shovel or blow the snow within 1 inch of the gravel driveway. Set your snowblower to 1 inch above the ground or shovel to approximately that height above the gravel. This ensures that gravel doesn't get caught in your snowblower or tossed into your yard with the snow.
Use a broom to sweep the thin layer of snow that remains on your driveway -- if the snow is lightweight and dry. This will not work with wet, heavy snow, but drier snow can be swept to the side of the driveway without pushing gravel along with it.
Sprinkle a 50/50 mixture of sand and rock salt on your gravel driveway. The sand helps to give your tires traction while the rock salt melts remaining snow and ice. Reapply sand and salt mixture as needed.
Tips and warnings
- Heated mats can be purchased and used to help melt ice and snow on your driveway.
- Ice-melting salt mixtures are most effective when the sun is out. Be sure to add more sand and salt mixture to your driveway to melt remaining ice and snow with the aid of the sun.
- Child- and pet-friendly ice melting compounds, other than rock salt, are available at hardware stores.
- Snowblowers and ploughs must be set above the surface of the gravel driveway in order to avoid having gravel fly out of the blower or plough.
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