Shoveling snow can be a daunting task, especially if you live in a location that sees snow frequently. Not only is shoveling tiring and never ending, but if you’re older, you may not be able to physically do it. Because of this, many people have resorted to using snow mats to help take care of the work for them.
Snow mats can be placed in areas that are prone to collecting snow, such as driveways, sidewalks, and patios. When the electric mats are activated, they warm up and melt the snow.
Read on to learn more about snow mats and how they can help take some of the work out of snow removal.
How do Snow Melting Mats Work?
Snow melting mats do just what their name says. They warm up to melt snowfall. You must understand that snow mats are not likely to work in blizzard conditions and they are not all made equally, meaning some will work better than others. If you get a lot of snow, consider a snow blower instead.
The basic premise of snow melting mats is that you place them in a location that gathers snow before it begins snowing. Once the mat is in place, it can be activated to produce heat. The heat that is produced does not allow snow or ice to accumulate on the area covered with the mat.
Where Can You Put Snow Melting Mats?
You can choose to place snow melting mats anywhere you would like. The larger the area, the larger the mat will need to be. Most people place heat mats at the entrance of their home, on steps and along walkways. These are the most highly traveled areas that are prone to snow and ice build-up.
Snow melting mats can also be placed on the driveway, but depending on the size of the driveway, you may need several to do the job. Portable snow melting mats may not be the best option for driveways because of the quantity needed.
Types of Snow Melting Mats
Most snow melting mats are very similar. The main difference in the mats is the way they are powered. There are two options for powering snow melting mats. Most all home residential snow mats are electric while some commercial applications use solar. Depending on your location solar may be an option if going through a solar company to install them.
Most snow melting mats that are available for purchase online are electric mats. There is really no guess work when it comes to using these mats. You simply lay the mats down and plug them in. You can manually turn the mats on or set a sensor to activate the mats when needed. The only time this may not be beneficial is in a power outage.
Snow melting mats vary in cost. There are several factors that need to be considered when pricing snow melting mats.
When you look at snow melting mats you will find they are designed for specific locations around a home. The design considers the size of the area they are covering as well as the amount of use they may receive.
Depending on the size and quality of the mat you choose to purchase, you can spend between $150 for a small mat up to $1500 for a large area mat. The prices will fluctuate based on the size of the area you are planning to melt snow. If you choose driveway mats, you will spend over $5000 for the proper mats and this may not cover your entire driveway.
Can You DIY a Snow Melting Mat?
Are you thinking about a way to make your own snow melting mats without breaking the bank? Unfortunately, there are not any quick fixes when it comes to making a snow melting mat. Remember, you are using electricity to melt snow, which in turn leaves water. If you are not using the proper materials, you could be setting yourself up for a dangerous situation.
While you cannot necessarily make your own snow melting mats, you can easily install premade mats. Because the mats are plug and play, it is quite easy to place them around your home. If you are looking at a permanent snow melt mat, you will need the help of a professional.
Are Snow Melting Mats Safe?
The thought of electrical cords running under snow in a high traffic area may not sit well with you. Rest assured, snow melting mats are extremely safe. They have been tested to withstand harsh weather while maintaining their integrity and safety. In fact, snow melt mats are safer than other methods of snow removal.
Shoveling: Each year there are 12,000 injuries that can be attributed to snow shoveling injuries. Sometimes these injuries are tweaked muscles while others are more serious says Nationwide Children’s Hospital. Not to mention the time required to remove a large amount of snow from around your home.
Ice melt: Another popular option is the use of ice melt crystals. While these crystals work well, they are not always eco friendly and can cause serious injury to pets and small children if ingested. The use of snow melt mats eliminates the need for ice melt chemicals.
Plowing: Plowing is a great way to remove snow quickly, but it can be expensive and even lead to the damage of your driveway and landscaping around the driveway. Using snow melting mats eliminates the risk of plows chopping at the concrete and grass.
As you can see the benefits of snow melting mats are impressive when compared to other methods of removing snow from your property. With a little bit of time and small cost, you can save yourself from serious injury.
Snow melt mats are a great way to eliminate the risk of injury during the winter. While they are not going to take care of large areas like a long driveway, they are ideal for steps, walkways, and front door patios.