Snow Removal: How to Get It Off the Top of Your Car

  • 0.5-1
  • Beginner
What You'll Need
Handheld ice scraper
Long-handled push broom (clean)
Long-handled snowbrush
Shovel (optional)
Winter gear: hat, warm mittens, snowsuit, etc.

If you live in an area that gets heavy annual snowfall, you should know several snow removal techniques so you can safely move your vehicle as soon as possible. Never decide to drive away with excessive snow atop your car just because you're tired after digging your car out of a large snow pile. If you drive with excessive snow on the roof of your car, it may slide or fly across your windshield, impeding your view and potentially causing your car to slip while on the road. It can also cause a hazard for other drivers.

Step 1 - Dress Appropriately

If it's cold enough for it to snow, you're at risk for hypothermia and frostbite. Make sure you dress properly when you go outside to tackle snow removal, even if you don't plan to spend a lot of time outdoors. The best outfit for this task consists of an insulated snow suit, including both snowpants and a jacket, and tall boots with thick socks. You'll also need to wear a hat to cover your ears. Insulated waterproof mittens are the best way to keep your fingers warm while you handle the snow.

Step 2 - Use the Push Broom to Push Snow Off the Roof

The easiest way to remove a large amount of snow from the top of your car is to push off the excess en masse. Use a clean long-handled push broom to move the pile, taking care to make sure that dirt and debris doesn't scrape the paint off of your roof.

Grab the push broom by the handle with both hands and push the snow with broad, long strokes. Push the snow toward a designated pile on the ground, and avoid pushing the snow into the road or driveway. If you have no choice but to push the snow into a driveway or road, you may have to later use the shovel to remove the snow and free your car.

Step 3 - Use the Snowbrush to Clean Up the Rest

Once you've removed the bulk of the roof snow, the next important step is to use your long-handled snowbrush to get the rest of the light snow. Use the snowbrush in horizontal swipes to push the snow off the car and toward a snow bank. Pay special attention to the snow that fell onto your windshield when you used the push broom in Step 2.

Step 4 - Finish Up with the Ice Scraper

If there's any ice caked on the roof of your car, you can use an scraper to chip at the ice and remove the blocks. Put the edge of the scraper against the edge of an ice patch, and push forward to break up the ice. Once the ice is free of the car, you can use the snowbrush to remove the ice. Limit the pressure you put on the ice scraper so that you don't scrape your car.