Plow It or Bucket? Skid Steer Snow Plow vs. Snow Buckets

Skid steer snow plow or snow bucket? With winter, and the chilly white powder it produces, now upon us, the question for the skid steer operator is “How can I use my skid steer loader to earn money during the off-season?” The answer is that the winter months don’t really need to be the “off-season.” The entrepreneurial skid steer loader owner will be out there finding a way to serve customers by clearing snow.

Business owners, homeowners, and neighborhood associations are out there just waiting for someone with a trusty skid steer loader to come with snow removal equipment. Before hitting the pavement to find jobs, it is a good idea to assess what might be the best tool for clearing. And for the purposes of this post, we need to look at the traditional skid steer snow plow versus the snow bucket.

Both the skid steer snow plow and the snow bucket are effective for snow removal, and both come in a variety of sizes. Both mount directly onto the skid steer, and both are constructed of sturdy steel. But each does have its unique features, and with those come unique advantages and disadvantages.

The skid steer snow plow is excellent for clearing all sorts of surfaces: from parking lots and other wide-open paved areas to driveways, sidewalks, and asphalt paths. The snow bucket is simply a different animal. It can push snow in a similar fashion to the skid steer snow plow. And it may even reduce the amount of “spoil,” or snow that is lost to the sides of a plow blade, thus cutting down on the time spent on the job.

But unfortunately the snow bucket is somewhat inefficient when it comes to negotiating obstacles. The bucket excels in handling lots of the white stuff at a time, but when just two or three inches need to be cleared, the flat bucket lip doesn’t compare to the skid steer snow plow blade scraping the surface clean.

So what should you choose? It depends on the job. If you need to clear and scrape and push snow off a surface, choose the skid steer snow plow. It will also be your best bet if you need to negotiate sidewalks and other tricky paths. But if you need to shovel up and haul big drifts and piles, the snow bucket is right for you.

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