February 2019 – Sponsored by John Deere
Not everybody has a snowblower on hand when a big snow falls. But there are at least three different ways to get the job done using implements you might already have – a front blade, a rear blade, and a materials bucket.
Option 1 – Front Blade
A front blade is probably the top candidate for removing snow without using a tractor-mounted snowblower. Attaching it to the loader is about as easy a hook-up as you’ll ever do. Typically, just insert the loader carrier into the top hangers on the front blade, then lift and roll back the carrier and the front blade will fall into place. Then insert the locking pins and you’re ready to go.
The angle of your front blade is also adjustable, so you can push snow in any direction. You’ll also want to use skid shoes to keep the blade edge operating just above the surface you’re clearing, like a gravel driveway.
You can also add a set of vertical plow guides to the outside edges of the blade so you always have a view of where those outside edges are, no matter how deep the snow.
Using a front blade to remove snow is a pretty simple task. But like any other project with your tractor, it’s important to stay focused and pay attention to what you’re doing.
Option 2 – Don’t have a front blade? How about a rear blade?
A rear blade is another good solution for removing snow.
You can adjust the rear blade in two directions: tilting it up and down from one end to the other – or angled, with the left or right end in a more forward position than the other. In fact, you can pivot most rear blades 360 degrees if you need to. That allows you to push snow off the surface, as well as pulling it forward.
You can also offset some rear blades to the left or right so it sits slightly outside the tractor’s path. That’s a handy feature if you want to remove snow from a soft shoulder, for example, while keeping your tractor on a firm road surface.
Option 3 – Use your loader bucket
Speaking of a pile of snow, your loader bucket is just the tool for scooping up snow you’ve pushed and pulled out to the edges of an area, and piling it further out of the way.
Add these three implements to your machine shed and you’ve got a snow pushing, pulling and piling package that just won’t quit.
Bonus – fighting ice the easy way
Now, if ice is your issue, a broadcast spreader attached to the 3-point hitch on your tractor is the perfect tool for spreading sand, salt or a chemical ice-melt product. A spreader with a polyethylene hopper and stainless steel spreading components will be resistant to sand, salt, and chemical corrosion. An internal agitator will keep material inside the hopper from clumping. And a PVC cover can keep moisture out and your ice-melt in while in operation or transport.
A broadcast spreader is a real 3-season tool: fighting ice in the winter, spreading fertilizer in the spring, and spreading seed in the fall.
You can see all this equipment at work doing this very project right here. If you’d like to see more tips and videos about getting all kinds of jobs done around your place, and the equipment you need to do them, visit TipsNotebook.com.
And remember, always read the Operator’s Manual before operating any piece of equipment and follow all operating and safety instructions.