It can be challenging to decide how and when to remove snow from your balcony during winter. Many people tend to forget about their balcony when it’s cold out, as it’s unlikely to get much use. Leaving your balcony unattended during the winter can be dangerous as mounds of snow can quickly build-up, which could cause severe damage to your property.
Leaving your balcony unattended during the winter can be dangerous as mounds of snow can quickly build-up, which could cause severe damage to your property. The right piece of equipment is likely to depend on how much snow has fallen. You can remove snow from your balcony using a:
Large amounts of snow on your balcony can ruin its structural integrity, causing it to collapse if enough weight is applied. Snow is especially an issue if you have a wooden balcony. Snow will melt and cause mildew to grow and rot to set in, ruining your balcony and costing hundreds, if not thousands, of dollars in repairs. Metal balconies aren’t safe from snow either, as snow could cause rust, which will spoil the balcony’s finish.
When to Remove Snow From Your Balcony
Balconies will require more maintenance during the winter than most of your house. As balconies are flat, snow will accumulate quickly during a blizzard, meaning you’ll want to dispose of any ice and snow regularly.
Balconies aren’t built to withstand snow as well as your roof. As a result, you should scrape off any snow once a couple of inches have settled on your deck.
Best Tools for Removing Snow from Your Balcony
You’ll find several tools on the market (and around your house) that are ideal for ridding your balcony of snow.
Most people have a shovel they can use to scoop snow off their balcony. Shovels are helpful because they can remove large amounts of snow at a time.
Shovels can also be used to remove slurry, which many other devices fail to do. However, be careful when shovelling small piles of snow, as you might accidentally strike and damage your deck.
Snow rakes are one of the best ways to remove snow from your balcony. Unlike normal rakes, snow rakes are composed of plastic or rubber, meaning they won’t damage your balcony’s finish when removing light coverings of snow. You can also use a snow rake to sweep snow off the edge of your deck in large quantities with minimal effort.
A leaf blower is another handy household tool that can be used to get rid of snow. Leaf blowers are excellent for light, fluffy snow, and can safely blow thin coverings off the side of your balcony. However, a leaf blower will generally be ineffective against densely layered snow.
Those looking for a low-tech solution to their snow problem might consider using a household broom. Brooms are superb for sweeping away light coverings of snow and are unlikely to scratch up your deck.
How to Safely Remove Snow From Your Balcony
Removing snow from your balcony can be hazardous, especially when living in an apartment building. Before heaving snow of your balcony, you’ll want to make sure there isn’t anyone or anything directly below, as large amounts of snow falling from high up could cause injury and considerable damage to cars.
You’ll also want to make sure you throw any snow far away from the building, so it doesn’t land on the balcony underneath you. If you’re worried about causing damage while removing snow off your balcony, shovel the collected snow into a large container, and take it outside and deposit it manually or melt it in your bathtub with hot water.
How To Stop Snow From Collecting In The Future
There are a couple of ways you can avoid snow from building up on your balcony in the first place. For example, if your balcony is out in the open, you could consider buying a sloped awning. An awning will stop snow from collecting on your deck, and with a sloped roof, any excess snow will fall off, away from your balcony.
If you’re not in a position to put up an awning, the best way to stop snow from settling is with a heat mat. Heat mats can be placed on your balcony and will melt any snow before it gets a chance to settle. Most heat mats melt snow at a rate of two inches an hour, which means they can deal with even the heaviest of snowstorms, leaving your balcony free of snow.