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Experiencing winter inside your home can be cozy, but driving is another story. Shoveling snow from your driveway can be a pain, especially if you don’t own a snowblower or snowplow. Sometimes, even using those tools could take an hour to get the job done if you have a long driveway.

And even if you get your car out in the morning, more snow could fall in the evening. Odds are you don’t feel like clearing your driveway again after a long day of work or errands. Thankfully, a surprisingly simple TikTok tip can help you avoid shoveling snow.

Park your car at the end of a driveway to avoid shoveling snow

Two men shoveling snow around a stuck car in a driveway in April 2016 in Nederland, Colorado
Shoveling snow in a driveway is a pain when you have somewhere to go | Helen H. Richardson/The Denver Post via Getty Images

Cathy Pedrayes on TikTok explains you should leave your car at the foot of your driveway before a snowstorm. That allows you to leave your driveway without having to shovel snow out of the way. You’ll still need to clean off your car, but that usually takes only a few minutes.

You can reduce that time further by covering your car’s windshield with a tarp or oversize blanket. And you could keep a snowblower at the end of the driveway, too, provided it’s protected from the elements.

But use the TikTok tip with caution

If you have a shorter driveway and a garage, you’re better off parking inside. You might have to spend a bit extra time shoveling snow out of your driveway, but at least your car won’t be iced over.

Keeping your vehicle at the end of a long driveway can be a big timesaver, but it has its downsides. It won’t be very convenient if you have to carry a lot of groceries up an icy concrete hill. And if snowplows happen come before your morning commute, they could leave piles of snow blocking your car’s way.

We’re not talking about the heaps of snow you see shoveled in the middle of large parking lots. However, even small piles are still enough to trap your vehicle’s wheels. Don’t floor the gas pedal in an attempt to free your car because this usually only makes the problem worse.

If other people are nearby, ask them to help you push your car out of the snow. You might have to “rock” your vehicle free if a simple push doesn’t do the job. Use your vehicle’s reverse and drive gears to build momentum while the other person supplies a final shove.

Other essential car tips for winter

If you find yourself stuck in a drift with no help, keep rubber floormats on hand. You can place these under your wheels to give them better traction. A handful of cat litter can also quickly melt any ice around your wheels.

During a severe snowstorm, you might get stuck on the side of the road because it’s too unsafe to proceed. Always keep an emergency kit inside your vehicle with water, snacks, a flashlight, and a warm blanket. Before leaving home, dress as warmly as possible with a coat, gloves, and hat.

On a similar note, always keep your car as clean as possible before setting out in the snow. Chunks of snow falling off your vehicle could create dangerous obstacles for other drivers. Under the right conditions, flying ice shards could even shatter someone’s windshield.

Also, try parking your car facing east, giving the morning sun more time to melt off any snow. And wash your vehicle as often as possible, even if you keep it in the garage. Though a garage shields your car from the elements, its poor ventilation makes it a breeding ground for rust due to road salt.


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