How to Start a Snow Removal Business in 9 Simple Steps

keyKey Takeaways:

  • Create a business plan that includes a thorough analysis of your target market, including marketing plans and financial estimates.
  • Establish precise safety regulations and ensure that every employee has received the appropriate training to avoid mishaps or injuries.
  • To guarantee the finest outcomes for your clients, invest in high-quality equipment and learn how to use and maintain it correctly.
  • Develop relationships with property managers, homeowner organizations, and other potential commercial clients to grow your business and create new leads.

People have a love-hate relationship with snow. They love to play in the snow but hate it when it blocks their roads. Here, the snow removal business comes into the picture. 

Moreover, the snow plowing industry is likely to grow at a CAGR of 6.74% during 2022-2027. Therefore, it is an ideal time to start a snow removal business. In this blog, we will discuss everything in our step-by-step guide from choosing equipment to insurance, how to market your business, and streamline services. 

Let’s start a way toward your successful ice removal business.

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What is a Snow Removal Business?

Basically, it is a business of removing snow after heavy snowfall. The purpose of this business is to clean snow; so potential clients have a clean space. During the winter season (around November-December), several countries witness heavy snowfall, and the demand for snow removal business arises. 

It is a seasonal business. Few start as full-time businesses, and some lawn care business owners start as a side hustle. Whenever you start a snow removal business, it is likely to flourish in any season. 

How to Start a Snow Removal Business? 

Here are 9 easy-to-adopt steps to start a snow plow business and make the most of the winter season. 

1. Form a business plan 

The first step in starting a business is having a snow removal business plan. Every business requires a business plan, so it knows where it is heading and what actions to take. However, there are certain points to consider while creating a business plan.

  • Executive summary: An overview of the entire plan should be written once your plan is ready. 
  • Business description: List your service offering in detail, including your location, vision, and the mission of your snow removal business. 
  • Business operations: It includes your company’s operational plan, which includes logistics, company assets, business location, and equipment. 
  • Market analysis: An overview of the target market and service area, such as potential customers, snow cleaning in the parking lot, and size of local businesses.    
  • Financial plan: Your business expenses, startup cost, profit-loss estimates, monthly income, and cash show. 

There are two types of snow removal businesses: residential and commercial. So, before starting a snow business, it is essential to be clear whether you want to begin a residential or commercial one. 

Opting for both is not right because they require different equipment and have challenges in managing them. In residential, you need to clear snow for houses, whereas in commercial, you need to clear snow near commercial premises. Residential contracts are for short-term, and commercial contracts are for longer periods of time. 

2. Register your business

No matter where your service is offered, you must register your business by getting licenses and permits. You have chosen a business structure and can register by:

  1. Choosing a business name: You cannot get a permit without it. If you already have a business, you can trade under the existing company’s name. 
  1. Select types of business: Determine whether you want to register as a sole proprietorship, limited liability company (LLC), or partnership. 
  1. Apply for a business license: Register your business with the local registry. Also, you must pay a certain fee for the company domain, Employer Identification Number (EIN), and trademark of your name. ​​

3. Create a business bank account 

A foremost rule for any business is to keep personal and business accounts separate. This keeps your income and expenses separate, which eventually helps to tally the final amount. 

Create a business bank account to start a snow removal business

Moreover, as small business owners, you do not want to get into any legal trouble; your personal account would not be involved in it. So, do not forget to open your business account when starting a snow plow business.

Also, as a snow plow business owner, you should get a credit card to keep separate personal assets and business expenses all in one place. Moreover, with the help of a business credit card, you can raise money later on. 

4. Get the right equipment 

Equipment is a lifeline for snow removal services, as they cannot operate the business without it. Moreover, you do not need to own the equipment; you just require the right equipment to help you function your business efficiently. 

Step 4: Get the right snow removal business equipment 

Here is the list of snow removal equipment you will require to start a snow plow business:

  • Snow blowers
  • Shovels
  • Plow truckers
  • Rock salt
  • Plow blades
  • Skid steer
  • Salt spreader
  • Telehandlers
  • Snow broom
  • Snow buckets
  • Pull plow 
  • Snow pushers

However, keep an extra set of equipment so that if you face any obstacle, you will have a backup. For instance, snow plow business owners shared that they require at least 2-3 trucks because they have experienced how their pickup trucks get stuck many times. 

5. Build your brand

If you are starting a new snow removal business or already own a snow plow business, you will need to focus on branding. A snow service is a business where the customer trusts the business owner.

For instance, potential clients allow you to clean their space, and for that, they will choose someone they can rely on. Nevertheless, it would be possible if the company was a brand. Also, branding shows how your services set you apart from others.

6. Get insurance contracts 

Business insurance is a must in the snow plowing business, as you need to protect your business. Snow can be challenging because of unexpected events that might impact it.

There are different types of insurance contracts to consider:

  1. General liability- It helps to cover damage such as injuries and property damage.
  2. Worker’s compensations– Insurance for the workers who were injured during the job. 
  3. Commercial insurance– To protect vehicles from damage during the job
  4. Business owner’s policy– It is an insurance plan that acts as an all-in-one policy that covers property, vehicle, employee, and equipment. 

7. Use marketing techniques 

You simply cannot run your business if your business is not listed online. For example, whenever it snows, a residential owner quickly searches “snow blower near me” because they want to get rid of the snow as soon as possible.

Also, the snow plowing industry is a competitive industry, and you will require marketing materials such as social media and digital marketing and getting listed on a search engine. 

8. Manage your business cost

Snow removal is not an expensive business; however, you will need to manage your costs. You need to invest in proper vehicles and hire skilled employees. Moreover, you need to fund your business with local and crowdfunding. 

To run snow plowing services, you need a personal investment of 15-20% as a good credit. It will help you to get a loan easier and faster to purchase the pickup truck. 

9. Conduct training programs for crew 

Another essential task is to train your crew to perform the job right. If snow removal professionals do not perform their tasks well, it will negatively impact business. Also, they should specialize in their work. 

For instance, a residential professional should know how to clean ice from parking lots and what to do when the ice melts.


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Pros and Cons of Starting a Snow Removal Business

There are a few upsides and downsides in the snow removal business; let’s find out what-

Upsides of starting a snow removal business 

  • It is a scalable business, so you can easily measure and know where to improve by taking the necessary actions. 
  • Once you invest in the right equipment, you are likely to generate a good source of income. 
  • It has a simple business model with lower risk. Moreover, you will require less startup income to start the business.

Downsides of starting a snow removal business

  • Cleaning snow can be challenging. The government will fine you if you push it onto the roads. 
  • There is no specific working time; if the customer wants snow removed in the middle of the night, you have to do it. 
  • The weather is unpredictable, so you will face issues while performing your job. For instance, you are cleaning, and again, a heavy snowfall comes. 

Minimize Your Working Hours by Using the Best Service Routes on Upper

Whether you start a snow removal business or any delivery business, customers expect you to serve them as quickly as possible. Therefore, time is crucial for any business, and coming late for it will leave a negative impression. 

In such a situation, the Upper Route Planner can help you eliminate routing problems and reach your destination in less time. 

Route planning software allows you to plan and optimize routes for your snow removal company efficiently in a few clicks. Therefore, you do not have to worry about numerous appointments. With Upper, you can import multiple addresses directly using Excel or CSV files. Additionally, it helps you to edit and set priority routes so you do not miss out on the important ones.

The route planner also helps to ease your service by scheduling routes in advance. It will also notify you about snow removal appointments on the actual service day.

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Having too many snow plowing orders? Get Upper Route Planner and schedule unlimited routes in advance by importing addresses directly using Excel or CSV spreadsheet.


Starting a snow plowing business will cost you around $5000 to $14000. The price will be different in residential and commercial because of changes in equipment. However, only some equipment, such as trucks and shovels, remain the same.

You can get clients by marketing your snow removal company through referrals, social media, and search engine optimization.

Yes, a snow plowing business can be profitable even if you are an independent worker. Even though it is a seasonal business, you can easily earn $60 to $200 for snow removal.


Removing snow may seem challenging, but it is easy to set up with formal training, primary knowledge, and the use of the right equipment. Simply follow the steps mentioned above to start or make a successful snow plow business, and you are good to go.

To do so, you must provide efficient snow plow service by being on time to the customer’s destination. Here, Upper’s service routing software comes in and helps you to plan and optimize the fastest routes in less time. Sign up for a and explore its benefits.

Author Bio
Rakesh Patel
Rakesh Patel

Rakesh Patel, author of two defining books on reverse geotagging, is a trusted authority in routing and logistics. His innovative solutions at Upper Route Planner have simplified logistics for businesses across the board. A thought leader in the field, Rakesh's insights are shaping the future of modern-day logistics, making him your go-to expert for all things route optimization. Read more.