Frequently Asked Questions

Everything you need to know to help you cope with the snow

Do you have a seasonal snowfall limit?

No! We offer unlimited snow removal, after 5 cm of accumulation, for the entire season.

 

When does the season start and end?

The snow removal season starts on November 1st and end April 15th. Yes, that’s right. If it snows April 15th to an accumulation of 5 cm or more, we will be there!

 

How can we contact you?

We always recommend contacting us by email (info@snowsquad.ca with your service address in the subject line) as we monitor that account 24/7. You can also call us at 705-682-9090, but during a storm, the quickest responses can be provided via email.

 

Are you a member of any professional organizations?

Yes, we are a member of the Snow and Ice Management Association (www.sima.org). We also have a long list of references for our work, which we are always happy to share.

 

Are you insured?

Yes, we carry Commercial General Liability insurance.

 

What areas do you service?

Snow Squad provides service to most areas in Greater Sudbury. Unfortunately, due to the speed limitations of our equipment coupled with the travel distances across the region and given the characteristics of some properties, we are not able to service all addresses. To find out if we can effectively service your property, please email us at info@snowsquad.ca with your service address in the subject line.

 

What if I don’t have suitable space on my property for your operator to place the snow?

Unfortunately, not all driveways or properties are suitable for our equipment and method of removing and placing snow. When you request a quote with your service address, we can let you know if we are able to safely and effectively service your property – to your satisfaction and to our high standards.

 

What methods of payment do you accept?

We accept payment by cheque, over the phone by credit card (Visa or MasterCard only), cash or e-transfer.

 

If I move mid-way through the season, can I get my money back?

When service is cancelled before the end of the season, pro-rated refunds are provided according to our Refund Policy.

 

Do you offer one-time snow removal services or only for the whole seasonal?

We offer a seasonal service from November 1st to April 15th but do not provide one-time service.

 

Do you offer a residential snow removal service for seniors in Sudbury?

Yes! Whether you need the service yourself or for a loved one, we offer the most reliable snow clearing service for seniors in Sudbury. You can reach us 24 hours a day by email or by phone during our office hours.

 

Do you offer residential walkway shovelling services?

No. Unfortunately, we are unable to offer this service due to challenges in maintaining the reliable workforce needed to ensure we could consistently provide this service.

 

Do you spread salt or sand on the driveway if it is icy?

No, we do not provide any ice management services to our residential clients. In the event of an ice storm or slippery conditions, it is the homeowner’s responsibility to apply any necessary abrasives. We are not responsible for any slip and fall incidents on a customer’s property.

 

Do you use plows or snowblowers?

We only use snow blowers to clear snow from your driveway. Our tractors are equipped with 7’ wide rear-mounted blowers that give our operators more control of where to place snow on your property, which avoids large snow banks and improved visibility at the end of your driveway. When appropriate, we can use a plow truck to clear a snow bank left at the end of your driveway by city plow trucks.

 

How many tractors with snowblowers do you have?

We have 25 tractors to service our residential customers and a fleet of equipment to handle commercial snow clearing/removal and commercial ice management services.

 

Your equipment looks big! Will it damage my driveway?

No. The tractor and blower will not crack your asphalt or interlocking stone. Although it looks big and heavy, the weight of the machine is evenly distributed over the extra-large surface area of its tires. There’s actually more weight per square inch being applied by your own car than by our big tractors!

 

Does your equipment scrape the snow right down to the interlock or other hard surface of my driveway?

No. The Teflon edge on our blades will pull most of the snow off the surface of your driveway but will not necessarily clear it right to the bare surface. Unlike a heavier plow truck that pushes the snow with a significant downward force, our lighter tractors pull and blow the snow. Depending on the surface and the nature of the snow, there may be times when our blade can get very close to the hard surface, but for the most part, your driveway will have a thin layer of snow on it, much like our city side streets do after they’ve been plowed.

 

Will your equipment damage my interlocking stone?

Of all equipment available on the market today, the snowblower is the more “interlock friendly”. If your interlock is uneven, minor scratching or discolouration may occur, however, by equipping our blowers with Teflon blades, we have further reduced the risk of this happening.

 

Does your equipment make a lot of noise?

Our residential snow removal equipment is actually less noisy than a walk-behind snowblower! We’re typically in and out of your driveway in under 2 minutes, minimizing the disturbance to you and your neighbours.

 

Will my driveway be cleared before 7:00 a.m.?

We would love to be able to guarantee that your driveway will be cleared by 7:00 a.m. but we cannot, in good faith, promise this. There are too many factors beyond our control that affect our launch time and when our operator will arrive at your address. These include:

  • when the snow starts
  • the nature of the snow (heavy and wet versus light and dry versus blowing and drifting)
  • the projected rate of accumulation (we wait for there to be close to 5 cm of accumulation before launching)
  • whether or not a prolonged snowfall is forecast
  • the requirement for a daytime launch (which is affected by traffic) or a weekend or holiday launch (which is affected by vehicles parked in driveways) etc.

Typically, you can expect service within 8 hours of our launch, depending on where you are on the operator’s route.

What we can guarantee is that we will always keep you informed of our plans and send you an email notification when we are dispatching our tractors, so that you know what to expect. We’ll also send service updates throughout a prolonged storm.

 

Do you provide a second pass on every launch?

We provide a second pass whenever one is required, which isn’t always the case with every launch. It depends on the nature of the storm and the conditions when our operator arrives at your driveway. If the city plow has already been by and there are no vehicles in the driveway, we may be able to provide a thorough clearing at the time of the first pass and if it’s possible, we will. During prolonged snowfalls, we will provide multiple passes, as required. Sometimes after a very heavy, prolonged snowfall during which our operators require rest breaks, a cleanup may be necessary even a day or two after the snowfall ends.

 

What happens if there is a car parked in my driveway when your operator arrives?

In order to safely service your property, our operators are trained to clear within 16” of parked vehicles and/or buildings including garage doors and building overhangs.

The aim of our first pass is to enable each of our customers to get out of their driveways as soon as possible. To facilitate this and provide maximum access to our operators, please park your vehicle(s) in your garage if you have one or park as close as possible to the top and side of your driveway. When a second pass is required and it is possible to move your vehicle onto the street, please do so to provide our operator with maximum access to the area to be cleared.

Unfortunately, we are unable to call ahead to let you know when your operator will be attending your property and our operators are unable to wait for you to move your vehicle if it is parked in the driveway when they arrive.

 

I have a gravel driveway. Can you still blow snow from it?

Yes we can, however, not until the ground freezes and the gravel hardens into place. Therefore, for the first couple of snowfalls all we can do is help pack it by driving over it to create a base. You should do the same by driving and parking on it to pack it. Once the base is established and although our operators make every effort to be as careful as possible, please be aware that some gravel may be blown onto your lawn as it’s impossible to avoid some gravel displacement until a suitable base is established.

 

Do you clean up the gravel that might get accidentally blown onto my lawn?

Yes. In the spring when the snow has melted, please advise us by email at info@snowsquad.ca with your service address in the subject line that cleanup of gravel is required and we will send someone as it is dry enough to do so without damaging your lawn.

 

What if the city plow comes by after you’ve already cleared my driveway?

During a launch, depending on the timing of your first pass and relative to when the city plow has passed, we will return to complete a cleanup and take care of your driveway end once everyone has received a first pass. If you need to urgently get out of your driveway before we can return to complete another pass and you have a bank at the end of your driveway that you can’t drive through, please email us at info@snowsquad.ca with your service address in the subject line and we will dispatch a tractor or plow truck to clear the end as soon as we can.

 

What about in between major snowfalls? Will you clear the end after the city plow has gone by and is there an extra charge for this service?

In between snowfalls and there hasn’t been a 5 cm accumulation of snow, it is not in our scope of services to attend solely to remove banks left by city plows at the end of driveways. Since it is impossible to know when and where city plows are clearing streets, we cannot maintain a crew on standby for this purpose.

If, however, the city plow passes between snowfalls and leaves a snow bank at the end of your driveway that you cannot drive through, please email us at info@snowsquad.ca with your service address in the subject line and we will send our next available operator. Unfortunately, we can’t guarantee a time.

 

If I am at the end of a route, does that mean I will get poor service or always be serviced last?

No. The service is the same for every one of our residential customers. With some runs, we do try to reverse the order of our routes so that if you were at the end of the route for one storm, you might be at the beginning the next time. Our routes are strategically established to deliver service as efficiently as possible to all customers based on your location. No preference is given. If you have a concern about the timing of your service, simply email us at info@snowsquad.ca with your service address in the subject line and we’ll figure it out together.

 

What happens if your operator damages my property?

As soon as they are aware of it, our operators are required to document any damage and report it to our office. We immediately advise you of the damage and establish a plan to assess and repair it. Repairs are typically completed in the Spring, unless the repair is urgent in nature and it can be effectively carried out under winter conditions. In the event of damage that our operator is not aware of, please advise our office immediately (ideally by email to info@snowsqaud.ca with your service address in the subject line and with photos of the damage) and we will establish a plan to assess and repair the damage.

Exclusions: We cannot be responsible for damage to property or items left on the driveway or in the immediate work area of our tractors. Such items include but aren’t limited to newspapers, flower pots/planters, downspouts, recycling bins, garbage bins/cans, basketball and/or hockey nets, children’s toys or extension cords.

 

Your operator is blowing snow on my neighbour’s property. What can be done about this?

We address this issue very specifically during operator training but if you see this happen or are made aware of it, please email our office at info@snowsquad.ca with your service address in the subject line. We will bring it to the immediate attention of our operator and make sure it does not happen again. Please do not hesitate to let us know about these kinds of circumstances. We can only fix problems that we know about.

 

What training do your drivers receive?

The most thorough in the business! Every October, each operator is trained on the navigation of their route, familiarized with the operation of the equipment (tractors, blowers and tablets) and thoroughly briefed on the safety issues affecting both the public and the operator. They are also made aware of the city by-laws affecting snow removal in Sudbury. As soon as there is snow on the ground, they undergo extensive hands-on training with the tractors and blowers.

In order to continuously improve our services based on customer feedback and our knowledge of best practices, ongoing training is provided to all operators throughout the season.

 

When are the driveway markers installed and removed?

Our driveway markers start going up in mid-October and are removed after April 15th. Please do not throw the markers away, as they can be re-used. If you would like to remove them yourself before April, kindly place them beside your house or garage and notify the office so we can collect them.

 

Do you offer rooftop shovelling?

No. We do not offer rooftop shovelling, however, a number of local companies do, including roofing companies.

 

Do you offer summer services?

Yes, we do offer summer services through our sister companies. Weed Man Sudbury’s lawn care is part of Canada’s largest lawn care franchise and can service all of your lawn care needs from fertilizer and weed control to aeration and seeding. Mowr Landscapes offers full-service grass cutting services and small landscape projects.