Can Plows Be Washed?

Can Plows Be Washed? (Best Practices)

This is a question I hear a lot from newbie plowers. They’re mostly concerned about doors and windows freezing as well as rams and motors being exposed to the cold after a wash.

So, let’s get right into it.

Can plows be washed?

Plows can and should be washed, if not straight after the use, then whenever you get a chance. A quick rinse will do after you come back to where it’s being kept and then a thorough wash after you get a bit of rest. If you don’t have your own space or a high-pressure washer, you can go to a carwash as they’re cheap and have warm water all year round.

Some folks are afraid that their doors, windows, mirrors, etc., will get frozen after a wash, and they won’t be able to even enter the vehicle. In that case, use Fluid Film or something similar to wipe or spray it on the troubled areas.

Why do plows need to be washed?

Like any other equipment, plows need to be regularly maintained, and washing them up after use is part of that maintenance process.

You want to get salt and ice buildup off your plow as soon as possible. It’s best to use a high-pressure washer or a hose with warm water.

Snow plow removing snow from street
Snow plow removing snow from the street

I know it’s not fun going back outside and washing your plow after you thawed already, and it’s -10 outside, so I like to do the whole job straightaway.

There’s no time like the present – that’s my motto. Once I’ve hosed down the plow and the truck underbody, I can go inside, have a nice warm drink, and relax.

How long can you leave the plow unwashed?

Ideally, plows shouldn’t be left more than a couple of hours unattended. If you let salt sit on your gear for too long, it will corrode your expensive equipment in no time.

You’ll also have to replace parts that have corroded or rusted from the salt damage more often. I don’t know about you, but I like to keep cash in my pocket and not get it corroded away by salt!

If the weather’s bad, you won’t go out and wash your truck and plow, of course. You’ll have to wait longer for the weather to calm down.

Unless you have a heated garage. If you do, then there’s no excuse for you to keep the plow dirty. The mere thought of it gives me the heebie-jeebies.

For lucky folks with heated garages, just know that salt can get activated at warm temperatures and really dig into the equipment and do damage. You’ve been warmed.

How dangerous is salt to your plow?

Long Day At Work
Long Day At Work

Saltwater can corrode metal at rates five times faster than fresh water. And even salty and humid ocean air can cause the metal to corrode up to ten times faster than air with normal moisture.

Likewise, suppose saltwater comes into contact with your electrical components. In that case, it can do extreme damage, first to the covers and protection and then to the electrical connections as well.

In either of these cases, you’re looking at potentially expensive component replacements.

As you can see, salt and water are a deadly combination for your plow and should be washed away asap.

How long do snow plows last?

Snop Plow on Road

There’s no hard answer to this. It depends on how many hours they’ve been used, what material they’re made of, and how well you’ve maintained them. The snowplow lifespan can be anywhere from 3 to 12 years.

There are outliers, of course, that have plows for more than 15 or even 20 years! These folks must have a soft touch.

Washing your plow regularly will certainly prolong its lifespan. It also depends on the weight, and the thickness of the plow material as a ticker material will last longer.

It will be heavier, though, and you’re going to burn more fuel, so that’s kind of a balancing act.

When to replace the plow?

If you’re taking good care of your plow, it could be years before you’ll have to replace it. In the meantime, you’ll probably have to replace a good few parts that will get corroded or worn (even with proper and timely maintenance).

The first signs of wear and tear are usually seen on the cutting edge. If you allow for the cutting edge to get damaged all the way through, it might damage the plow itself, forcing you to replace the whole thing, unfortunately.

Still, there’s no hard answer as to when you’ll need to replace your plow. With good washing up and maintenance after every use, you’ll definitely prolong its lifespan and keep the cash longer in your pocket.

Related Questions

Is a poly plow lighter than a steel plow?

Most people think that poly is lighter than steel, but the truth is that it’s even heavier due to the fact that has a reinforced steel framework underneath the poly. They’re great as they’re very slick and super-durable and resilient.

When should I replace my cutting-edge?

You should replace the cutting edge before the plow frame is exposed, or even earlier. It all depends on the material that it’s made of, how often you’ve been using it and on what surfaces.

You don’t want to risk running worn-down gear that can also double your chances of enduring a catastrophic failure and having equipment downtime.