Snow and ice removal services cost guide

About a million people in the US get injured annually during the winter season. While you can’t take care of the common area sidewalks, you can ensure that your driveway, walkways, sidewalks, and roofs are snow and ice free this winter. While, of course, you can take care of the cleaning yourself, special snow and ice removal experts can get the job done faster and more efficient. Moreover, cooperation with experts will minimize the time for work and school preparation in the morning, relieve physical muscle pains, and bring mental relief due to the completed job and visible result.

Here you will learn about:

Average cost of snow and ice removal services

Snow and ice removal services specialize in clearing driveways, sidewalks, backyards, and sometimes even roofs from ice and snow during the winter time. The average labor cost for snow and ice removal service is $25-$85/hour for snow blowing, while shoveling will cost you even less $30-$50/hour. Typically, homeowners spend between $50 and $185 in total with the average spending being $115 in total. If you have a large property and will be paying for cleaning snow and ice from all the outside surfaces, be ready to pay even $400. Roof snow and ice removal service is not common, yet frequently available upon request and will cost you $250-$500 additionally.

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Cost-related questions

How do snow and ice removal experts charge?

There are several options how snow and ice removal experts can charge you.

  • Per hour: $25-$75 is the standard charge for manual snow removal professionals;
  • Per month: $110-$130 is the average cost of snow removal per month.
  • Per season: $350-$450 are usually charged for a limited number of visits per season;
  • Per event: $30-$75 is a charge for a time cleaning after a snowstorm; it’s usually applied in areas with low precipitation level or very short snowing periods;
  • Per visit: $30-$60 are usually paid per visit during the ongoing snowstorm;
  • Per inch: $60-$95 is the typical cost of snow and ice removal under 6 inches of snow; every additional inch will cost you $30 more.

What are the basic cost factors?

Besides the standard charge, there are particular cost factors that will usually increase the final payment you make for the snow and ice removal service. Here is a short list of them:

  • Area size. The bigger the area for cleaning, the more you will pay. If you want the experts to clean driveway only, you will be able to negotiate a better deal than for a driveway coupled with the backyard.
  • Area landscape. Any steep slopes or curvy cuts around your property landscape will increase the final bill since they almost always require careful manual labor to be cleaned. Extremely long areas and driveways (those over 90 feet) are likely to require an additional $30-$50 for every additional 100 feet.
  • Area surface. Asphalt and concrete driveways are much easier to clean than dirt or gravel. They require much less time and effort on the cleaning experts’ side. As a result, such driveways may be charged extra for such a service.
  • Snowfall amount. The average amount of snow is calculated based on the statistics from the previous year and the weather forecasts. However, if the amount of snow appears to be significantly higher than expected, you might be charged extra at the end of the season.
  • Location. Location in terms of climate has an impact on the price. Areas with common snowfalls will have higher rates while areas without the true winter are likely to cost less. Besides that, you will pay more if the snow level is more than 6 inches high as it has already been stated.
  • Equipment used. If your snow removal expert can deal with your yard by means of shovel only you are likely to pay less than for a project that requires a snow cleaning vehicle.

What additional costs may take place?

If you would like snow removal experts to clean your roof as well as the ground area, you can expect to pay about $250-$500 additionally for the cleaning. However, such a service is not basic so is always performed on demand.

Salting and sanding of the sidewalks and the driveway are frequently not included into the price list as well. However, these services are always available additionally and cost around $20-$40 per visit.

Snow markers or reflectors are installed to outline the driveway. Such a service costs only $2/piece but can significantly speed up the cleaning process.

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How to get better deals?

If you would like to minimize snow and ice removal cost in winter, then consult your ground care companies (even such as gardeners) since they frequently offer such a service. If you sign up for an all-year-round service, you are likely to get the best deal available in the market.

Besides that, you can also get lower rates if you sign up for the snow removal service before the cleaning season begins.

Don’t also forget about the public works departments that may plow selected private driveways for a symbolic fee of $25-$50. However, be ready that such a service is offered on a time-available basis. This means that during the snowstorm, they might skip your house to clean more public roads and areas.

What is the cost of DIY snow removal?

Most often people believe that snow removal services can be avoided since everyone can clean snow without experts. While generally, it is true, such an enterprise still requires financial investment and daily physical labor. Here is the tentative cost of DIY snow removal:

  • Snow shovels $15-$45
  • Snowblower from $100 (for an electric powered model) to $900 (for a heavy-duty model), the average price homeowners pay is around $250; the gas-powered snow blowers range from $250 to $2,300 and on average cost $750 for a personal use.
  • Snow salt costs $10-$35 for a 50 lb. bag
  • Snow melting mats can be heated before the snowstorm and so prevent any snow from accumulating on your premises. The cost varies from $60 for a stairs mat to $140 for 30x60”
  • Tips to hire reliable snow removal experts

    Just like any other contractor, a snow and ice removal professional must have a business license, positive references ready for your checks, binding estimates, and all contracts done in writing. Remember to read any paper you sign and read any document within your package to ensure that you will receive what you expected to. Here are a couple of questions that will help you differentiate between a reliable and a scam snow removal expert:

    • When will they start the snow removal services? You need to hear the exact beginning and end date.
    • What is the cost of their service? Ensure that before the expert names you the price, he or she asks about your property peculiarities (in terms of landscape design), finds out about the frequency of cleaning you expect to have, the length of your planned cooperation (a visit, a month, a season, a year). Without this information, there is no way anyone can give you a real estimate.
    • What parts of the property are included into standard cleaning? Will they clean front walkways, for example.
    • Are there any additional charges? For example, some companies charge extra for heavy snow months or unexpected snowfalls.
    • At what snow level does their service begin? Some snow removal professionals get down to business only if your yard snow cover is 2 inches or more.
    • What kind of insurance does the company provide? Always ensure that you hire a company with an insurance if you want to be reimbursed for the broken dwarfs in the yard or destroyed rose bushes.
    • What is the complaint policy of the company?
    • Other frequently asked questions

      Is there a difference between residential and commercial snow removal?

      Residential snow and ice removal service is smaller in its scope if compared to the commercial orders. At private properties, most often the method of shoveling or small blowers are used for cleaning. Since the square footage of commercial properties is significantly bigger (for example, parking lots, school territory, business development sites, etc.), the services require a completely different approach to the performed service: the use of special machinery (such as snow blowers and throwers) as well as more time for project cleaning completion. As a result, commercial snow and ice removal service cost significantly higher than residential cleaning. You can expect to pay about $450/snowfall for a 20,000-square-foot area and about $900/snowfall for 50,000-square-foot area cleaning.

      What time of day do experts remove the snow?

      Most snow and removal companies work between 3 AM and 8 AM to ensure that home- and business owners have cleared a path at the beginning of the working day. This is the time with the minimal traffic in all senses. However, the company may visit at other times of the day right after the snowfall stops. But in the latter cases, the process of the system of cleaning is always discussed upon contract signing.

      Is there are obligatory deposit?

      Be ready that many snow and ice removal experts might require a deposit at the beginning of the season. The amount of deposit varies from $50 to $100 depending on the property size and the scope of work. One can expect the deposit to be returned at the end of the season, provided that they do not cancel any service during the season.

      Bottom line

      Snow and ice removal services help to stay on time and healthy during the heavy snowing winter times. While on average the services cost about $170 in total, the lowest price may be only $50 per cleaning. The final bill for such a service might be slightly amended depending on the snow amount and your property landscape.

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