Maryland Snow Removal Services are in full swing! It’s no secret that winter has come to Bethesda, MD, and with it, the hazards that come along with winter weather. Snow creates a beautiful blanket when it first falls, but by the time the next morning rolls around, you want to be able to move freely around your property without having to worry about slipping and falling on hidden patches of ice. We’ve written posts about what to ask snow removal contractors, but we’ve never talked about what you can do to help make it easier for DC and Maryland Snow Removal Services to provide the best snow plowing services possible. Let’s take a look at six tips to help your contractor succeed.
1. Know & communicate intricate details of your property.
Your property is unlike anyone else’s throughout Washington DC, Baltimore or anywhere in Maryland, and so are your specific needs. Whether you need a snow removal solution for your home or business, you want a company that will pay attention to details. Don’t settle for a one size fits all solution that won’t handle the specific snow removal that you need; instead, choose a company that will work with you in order to ensure you get exactly what you need. For example, you may have unique obstacles, access points, drainage issues and landscaping that need special attention. Be sure to communicate those details to your Maryland Snow Removal Services provider.
2. Walk & map your property with your contractor.
Before the first snow falls (or as soon as possible), take the time to walk your property WITH your contractor. Highlight areas that will be of particular interest to the snow removal specialists who are helping clear the snow from your property: ditches, drainage areas, speed bumps in your parking lot, and anything else that could cause an obstruction for snow plows. Note whether or not there are curbs in between parking spaces, including handicapped spaces. You should also decide what areas need to have the snow removed first and which ones can wait, particularly during an extended period of snowfall. Be sure the map of your property is accurate and there are markers in place where obstacles might cause a problem. Ask yourself:
- Where would a fresh blanket of snow cover up hazards on the ground, including low curbs, ditches, or sharp drops that might be concealed?
- What areas do I need to be cleared most? This might include areas where customers can walk or walkways to specific locations.
- How high a customer volume is likely in the event of heavy snowfall? This can help determine how often snow will need to be removed and how soon you can expect a business to be back up and running.
3. Help decide where the snow should be stored.
When you clear the snow from the ground around your property, it needs to go somewhere. If you have to make a decision on the fly, it might not be the best decision for your property: it might block visibility, take up valuable parking space, or create a problem later on, when the pile of snow begins to melt.
Snow should never be placed near your walls or foundation, where it can cause damage or make pipes more likely to freeze. Take the time before the first snow to decide where you want to put the snow that’s been removed from your property. If you need snow relocated to a more convenient off-site location, make sure that’s part of your snow removal plan from the beginning in order to have an accurate budget for your snow removal services.
4. Use driveway markers in designated areas.
If there’s an area that you think will be particularly important to be able to find, try marking it with stakes or other tall markers that will be easy to find in the snow. This is particularly important if your map-drawing skills leave something to be desired or you’ve waited too late to get started. These stakes will serve as guidelines that can stay in place all winter. Stakes can also help designate safe walking areas that have been deiced when your customers arrive.
5. Consider salt options in advance.
If you’re planning to use salt to deal with snow on walkways and other high-traffic areas where customers will need to go, make sure that it’s not going to cause problems. Some ice melt chemicals are better for the environment than others. Let the pros make the final decision, but if you have concerns about run off or landscaping, communicate them ahead of time. Take the time to consider your area and how your deicing choices can impact others around you. Is there a playground, school, or animal-heavy area nearby? Do you have a garden or other plant-filled area that you want to protect in the area? Make sure to consider where the salt will be going as snow melt washes it away as well as which chemicals will work in lower temperatures.
6. Decide how frequently snow should be removed during heavy snow storms.
When a hard winter hits, ongoing snow removal is critical to keeping your business open and functioning smoothly. It’s vital when setting up your Maryland Snow Removal Services that you establish how frequently you want snow removed during bigger snow storms. Many snow contractors have a standard like 2-3 inches that will cause another trip to your location once it’s hit. However, you should determine this in advance with your contractor to make sure that threshold is best for your specific business.
Keep in mind that removing snow frequently is a far quicker process to keep up with than trying to take care of accumulated snowfall all at once. You may be tempted to put off snow removal until you know that your business will be ready to open again. Unfortunately, this means that your snow removal company will need to take care of all of it at once–and that may be a time-consuming process that will take longer than you intended to get your business open and safe for customers again. If you need to cut back on costs, consider keeping your ongoing snow removal efforts to critical areas and allowing others to remain until final clean up.
If you’d like to discuss your current services with us or get an estimate on new Maryland Snow Removal Services, please contact us today. We’ll go through tips like this to set up a snow removal plan that will keep your walkways, parking lots, and other critical areas clear of snow throughout the winter season.
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