Shoveling snow from your driveway can be an arduous task that takes a toll on your back and physical health. However, many people usually have to deal with it just to get the car out of the driveway. Other than shoveling, salt, and other chemicals are a standard solution to melt driveway ice. While this is often popular and may even be encouraged, it is not a safe option for your driveway plants or pets. One of the least physically exerting options available is a heated driveway either by a wood or coal boiler.
Keeping snow off your driveway is necessary because slips and falls are common during winter and can devastate your health. Often this risk of falls increases when people walk on the snow, and it compacts, which makes it much harder to remove. Because of this, many people have begun shifting to heated driveways, which require much less labor.
Heated driveways came onto the scene about 25 years ago but were primarily available to commercial properties. It was only 15 years ago that they became more popular for residential properties and are ideal for people without the physical ability or the time to shovel the snow.
Electric Heated Driveways
In electrically heated systems, the driveway contains a grid pattern of mats and cables embedded beneath the surface. The lines and mats are corrosion-resistant, and the primary heating system that warms the driveway. This is easy to install and operate but will cost a fortune to run.
Hydronic Wood or Coal Boiler Systems
In this system, the driveway has PEX tubing installed under the surface that contains an anti-freeze (glycol) and water mixture. This mixture circulates under the driveway and then goes back to the boiler. Mixing valves tempers the water returning to the boiler to prevent thermal shock to the vessel.
What is a wood or coal Boiler?
Wood and coal boilers are heating devices that burn wood or coal in a firebox, typically surrounded by water. The heat created is transferred into the water, which can then be used to heat multiple things: your home, drinking water, pool, driveways, and walkways.
They are an excellent investment that will ensure you have constant hot water and heat supply in your home. They are much more economically sound than electric options because wood or coal costs a fraction compared to electricity.
Why are Wood and Coal Boilers a Great Option?
Some of the key benefits of the boiler system include the following:
- Keeps your driveway and walkway snow and ice-free all year.
- It helps preserve the paved areas outdoors from the wear that is common with the freeze and thaw cycles.
- You can integrate the system with your existing heating systems and your driveway.
- It works excellently with steep driveways that are usually much harder to shovel or plow snow off of.
- The boiler and hydronic systems typically last 30 – 40 years.
- They are an excellent economical alternative to electric, oil, or gas heating systems.
You should not have to shovel snow or spend hours using chemicals on your driveway. Hydronic systems that melt the ice of your driveway using wood or coal is an excellent option to save you time and money and keep you and your family safe. Coal and wood boilers are also great for heating the home, drinking water, and a pool, which is a perfect addition while keeping costs low.