Best Corded and Battery-Powered Snow Shovels for Effortless Digging

Updated: Jun. 05, 2024

The best electric snow shovel should be easy on your back, simple to use and have you out of the cold in no time.

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Electric Snow ShovelsSHERI KAZ/FAMILY HANDYMAN

Let’s be honest—when it comes time to shovel snow off your sidewalk or driveway, there’s probably a long list of things you’d rather spend your time doing. The best electric snow shovel won’t eliminate the task, but it makes it much easier than a manual snow shovel. The motorized paddles lift and launch snow out of your path, allowing for less physical effort on your end, and speeding up the process altogether. Considering the health and injury risks that come from manual snow shoveling, an electric version is worth the investment.

“Proper preparation is important if you live in an area that gets frequent winter snowfalls,” says Nicole Durden, Senior Merchant of Outdoor Power Equipment for Home Depot. “Electric snow shovels are designed to efficiently clear moderate amounts of snow from sidewalks, driveways and small areas. Electric snow shovels require less physical effort and are easier on the user compared to traditional snow shovels.”

These snow removal tools come in different sizes and types—corded or battery-powered—making it easy to select the best option for you and your home. When combined with snow and ice removal hacks, these machines help maintain a clear and safe walkway for you and your family.

When the January storms hit, I was armed with three corded electric snow shovels and four cordless snow shovels to test. My yard was covered in over 2 feet of heavy, wet snow within four days. The final storm delivered 24 hours of non-stop snowfall, dropping 18 inches. Worse yet, that snow was followed by several days of sub-zero temperatures threatening to turn it into hard-packed ice.  

Shoveling snow is a pain, but an electric snow shovel makes it easier. No matter which model you choose, you’ll save time and your back will thank you.

Greenworks 12-Inch Corded Snow Shovel Sheri Kaz/Family Handyman

Best Overall Electric Snow Shovel

Greenworks 12-Inch Corded Snow Shovel

Despite the low price, this Greenworks shovel is nearly as effective as higher-priced models, capable of throwing snow up to 20 feet with an impressive 8-inch clearing depth. A handy cord wrangler on the handle prevents accidental unplugging during use, and the adjustable handle ensures it fits a range of user heights. This well-reviewed best electric snow shovel is also convenient to store, thanks to a unique folding design.

I was impressed with how this corded electric snow shovel tackled the end of the driveway after the snow plow came through the neighborhood. Not only did it remove the snow down to the pavement, but it was also able to chew up the large icy chunks left at the end of the drive. Relatively lightweight, this snow shovel has a ton of power tossing the snow into the neighbor’s lawn at 300 pounds per minute.

Another neighbor used it on her wooden deck with 6 inches of heavy snow and on a 200-foot slab. She finished the job in 20 minutes versus two hours. It threw the snow 20 feet without a problem. The one thing lacking in this snow thrower is adjustable louvers to direct the output of the snow. Other than that, it’s lightweight enough to maneuver and solidly built at an affordable price.

Type: Corded | Weight: 14.4 lbs. | Maximum Snow Depth/Clearing Width: 8 in./12 in. | Warranty: 3 year

Greenworks 12-Inch Corded Snow ShovelSheri Kaz/Family Handyman

Pros

  • Can move up to 8-inches of heavy snow
  • Great for driveway approach
  • Corded so you never run out of power
  • Cord management on handle
  • Durable

Cons

  • Tethered by a cord
  • Stationary discharge direction

Wen 12-inch Cordless Sheri Kaz/Family Handyman

Best Budget Electric Snow Shovel

Wen 12-inch Cordless

The Wen 12-inch cordless snow shovel is an affordable choice with the convenience of battery-powered mobility. This lightweight unit is capable of moving up to 6 inches of powder, but when the snow is heavy and wet, it struggles to remove 6 inches. Its sweet spot is more like 3 inches of the wet stuff. The battery held up for over 30 minutes with 6 inches of heavy snow and took 2.5 hours to charge.

Like several of these lightweight snow shovels, it doesn’t clean clear to the pavement, but in my experience, once the bulk of the snow was removed, the final layer melted off. The Wen and the Voltask look and handle almost the same, both being light-duty shovels. One notable difference is that Wen’s battery level indicator lights are hidden from view while working.

You’ll be glad you added this handy tool to your winter arsenal, just be sure to order the battery and charger, too.

Type: Cordless | Weight: 14.62 lbs | Maximum Snow Depth/Clearing Width: 6 in./12 in. | Warranty: 2 year

Wen 12-inch CordlessSheri Kaz/Family Handyman

Pros

  • Adjustable angle output
  • Cordless mobility
  • Easy to maneuver
  • Lightweight

Cons

  • Not the best for deep heavy snow
  • Doesn’t clean to pavement
  • Battery light indicator hidden from view

Voltask 12-inch Cordless Snow Shovel Sheri Kaz/Family Handyman

Best Lightweight Electric Snow Shovel

Voltask 12-inch Cordless Snow Shovel

I love everything about the Voltask 12-inch cordless snow shovel. At a mere 11 pounds with cordless operation, this shovel is lightweight and easy to handle. I especially appreciate the adjustable throwing direction, allowing me to turn the dial 30 degrees to the left or right. This is a useful feature to have in tight spaces and high winds because you decide where the snow will land. 

The Voltask threw slushy snow, heavy snow and powder snow with surprising ease, especially considering its light and lean stature. Soupy snow landed a few feet away, while packed and powdery snow flew 10 to 18 feet respectively.

The scraper blade leaves some snow on the pavement, but it’s perfect for the uneven surfaces I need to clear. When making a path for my dog, I appreciated how easily I could lift the shovel and didn’t worry about hurting the turf. I sliced through a 2-foot snow bank in several passes, working my way to the ground. Throwing snow at 350 pounds per minute, this shovel beats manual effort any day.

Type: Cordless | Weight: 11.2 lbs. | Maximum Snow Depth/Clearing Width: 6 in./12 in. | Warranty: 3 year

Voltask 12-inch Cordless Snow ShovelSheri Kaz/Family Handyman

Pros

  • Affordable
  • Lightweight
  • Cordless
  • Adjustable snow-throwing direction

Cons

  • Scraper doesn’t clear to pavement

Best Wheeled Electric Snow Shovel

Earthwise 16-inch Corded

The Earthwise 16-inch corded snow shovel clears a wider path than the others we tested, making work quicker. This medium-duty snow shovel has several stand-out features that make this the best option for older people. The 6-inch wheels are offset to the rear of the machine, allowing it to stand upright and remain stable. It’s easy to take a break or wheel it to the next location, and is stable for less fatiguing. I felt like I was pushing a lightweight baby stroller or toy shopping cart. This machine also features a large, user-friendly handle to adjust the throwing direction.

It’s powerful enough to get through most snow conditions under 8 inches, and it sends the white stuff flying 10 to 30 feet away, depending on the consistency of the snow. In my testing, this machine struggled with 6 inches of heavy, wet snow, but with patience, it accomplished the task. It worked like a champ in heavy, wet snow that was 3 inches deep. And it performed without issue in 5 inches of the fluffy stuff.

With an impressive 8-inch clearance depth and 16-inch width, this shovel can tackle bigger jobs if you take it slow. While it’s not meant for heavy-duty snow removal, like the chunky snow the city plow leaves behind, it will safely and easily clear snow from your sidewalks or deck.

The Earthwise had the most complicated assembly process, and it took me an hour and a half (lots of screws and bolts of varying sizes). But for someone with decent mechanical skills, it could be done in half the time.

Type: Corded | Weight: 14.5 lbs. | Maximum Snow Depth/Clearing Width: 8 in./16 in. | Warranty: 2 year

Earthwise 16-inch CordedSheri Kaz/Family Handyman

Pros

  • Wheeled unit stands on its own
  • Adjustable throwing direction with large handle
  • Corded design requires no downtime
  • Wide 16-inch clearing width

Cons

  • Assembly required
  • Tethered by a cord

Snow Joe Cordless SS13 Sheri Kaz/Family Handyman

Best Cordless Snow Shovel

Snow Joe Cordless SS13

The Snow Joe SS13 is at the top of the best electric snow shovels in the cordless category based on price and performance. The powerful 400-watt motor throws the snow up to 20 feet away (depending on consistency) at 300 pounds per minute. The ease of a battery-powered snow shovel can take you to places a corded one can’t.

This machine performed well in all types of snow, including the slush. The Snow Joe cuts a 13-inch wide path close to the pavement. Although the Snow Joe plastic scraper wasn’t able to remove it as effectively as my snow blower, this machine made easy work of the top layer of heavy, wet snow. The Snow Joe feels powerful and durable, yet light enough to move around your property with ease.

Like the majority of the shovels I tested, assembly took around 15 minutes to attach the two-piece shaft and secure the adjustable handle. In my experience, the battery charged in less than two hours both times I ran it down. In heavy snow, the 2.4 amp battery lasted about 30 minutes, but by then, my hand was fatigued from holding the trigger, and it was time for hot chocolate.

Type: Cordless | Weight: 14 lbs. | Maximum Snow Depth/Clearing Width: 6 in./13 in. | Warranty: 2 year

Snow Joe Cordless SS13Sheri Kaz/Family Handyman

Pros

  • Cuts through snow plow remains
  • Cordless mobility
  • Storage bag and ice scraper included
  • Durable design

Cons

  • Output direction isn’t adjustable
  • May not clear close to pavement

Best Corded Electric Snow Shovel

Toro Corded Power Shovel

The Toro 38361 Power Shovel has an impressive throw, which is powered by a 7.5 Amp electric motor. As an owner of a Toro cordless snowblower, I was able to test them side-by-side in 5 inches of wet snow on the driveway. To my surprise, they performed equally well. When I got to the end of the driveway, I was shocked that the Toro shovel blew the snow plow rubble 25 feet across the street. Of course, cleaning up after the city plow was much easier and faster with my actual snowblower, but the Toro shovel did a fine job on the section I tackled.

By the time the storms were over, the city plow came through five times, and my mailbox was close to being buried. Toro to the rescue! This machine was light enough to lift to the top of the pile and toss the snow out of the way faster and easier than a conventional shovel. Next, I used the Toro to clear a path on the grass for the dog where the snow had piled up to a foot. I scraped it in layers and sent the snow sailing at least 20 feet out of my way.

Between the two laborious projects, I never worried about running out of power because the machine plugs into an outlet. If you need a 100-foot outdoor extension cord, be sure to pick up one that is 16 gauge. It’ll be easier than using a manual shovel; I guarantee it.

Type: Corded | Weight: 12.5 lbs | Maximum Snow Depth/Clearance Width: 6 in./12 in. | Warranty: 2 year

Toro Corded Power ShovelSheri Kaz/Family Handyman

Pros

  • Telescoping shaft and handle for height adjustment
  • Cord lock
  • Cleans down to pavement
  • Unlimited AC power to finish the job
  • Durable construction

Cons

  • Can not control the direction of output
  • Cord can be cumbersome

Most Powerful Cordless Snow Shovel

EGO Power+ Multi-Head Snow Shovel Kit

Honestly, the Ego Power+ Cordless Snow Shovel is a beast in every way. It’s 69 inches tall, a hefty 18 pounds (without the 5-pound battery), and a snow-eating machine. If you’re strong enough to handle the Ego Power+ and you own other Ego products, you’ll love having the snow shovel, too. The modular design of Ego products makes swapping tools and batteries easy. I received the complete kit including the power head shaft, shovel head, 56-volt battery and charger (although I could have easily swapped out my trimmer head with the shovel head on my existing Ego Powerload string trimmer).

The Ego shovel removed the snow to the pavement and consistently threw the snow 25 to 30 feet. It helps that you can adjust the direction of the throw and use the variable speed trigger to give you even more control. Unlike some users, I never had any clogging issues in slushy or wet snow. When I tried clearing a path on the grass for my trash cans, I gave up because the snow was already a foot high on an incline and I didn’t have the strength to lift the machine to slice it down. To be fair, I was already exhausted from 24 hours of straight snowfall.

Don’t be afraid to push the Ego shovel to the limits, because it has built-in overload protection to prevent damage. This machine is built tough with weather-resistant construction and the power to cut through extreme conditions.

Type: Cordless | Weight: 18 lbs. | Maximum Snow Depth/Clearance Width: 6 in./12 in. | Warranty: 5-year tool; 3-year battery

EGO Power+ Multi-Head Snow Shovel KitSheri Kaz/Family Handyman

Pros

  • Variable Speed
  • Clears to the pavement
  • Adjustable output direction
  • Powerful and durable

Cons

  • Heavy

What to Look for When Buying an Electric Snow Shovel

It’s important to keep in mind that although electric snow shovels require less physical effort than manual shovels, they are heavier. Compared to a shovel that weighs a couple of pounds, an 11- to 18-pound electric shovel may get uncomfortable for some people to hold after a while.

On the other hand, if you regularly receive heavy snowfalls (more than 8 inches deep), you’ll want to consider investing in a snow blower. You should also think about the overall size of your area when purchasing electric shovels for snow. You may have to do some math, but it’s worth the time to ensure you don’t end up with a corded machine that won’t reach as far as you need.

Another feature worthy of consideration is the ability to change the direction of the snow output so it lands where you want.

Types of Electric Snow Shovels

The two types of electric snow shovels are corded and battery-powered models. Corded electric snow shovels offer unlimited runtime—they simply plug into your home’s power outlet—but are limited by their cord length. If you have a larger driveway or path, you’ll need to invest in a high-quality extension cord.

Battery-powered machines provide maximum portability, making them convenient for quickly carrying to different areas—like a detached garage, upstairs to a deck or a neighbor’s sidewalk—without having to manage an extension cord. Electric snow shovel reviews often note that batteries tend to have a short runtime and long charge time, so cordless electric snow shovels aren’t the most practical for larger projects. Many users get two batteries, so they can swap them out when one gets depleted.

Why You Should Trust Us

As a shopping editor and product tester, I love reporting my discoveries in hopes that they make your life easier. I’ve lived through more than a few snow-filled winters so I know how difficult clearing your driveway and walkways can be. I’ve tested lots of different products for Family Handyman readers so I know what specific features to call out that other users appreciate or might question when purchasing a new tool.

For this piece, we consulted the Senior Merchant of Outdoor Power Equipment for Home Depot, Nicole Durden. She worked for Home Depot for many years and is very familiar with different types of outdoor equipment, including electric snow shovels.

How We Found the Best Electric Snow Shovel

As shopping experts, our only job is to help you find a winning product. In this case, we tested each product to ensure we’re only recommending the best. We sought out reliable brands of electric snow shovels with a high customer satisfaction rating and then we tested them in real-world conditions to determine performance, value, ease of use, strengths and weaknesses.

How We Tested the Best Electric Snow Shovels

Electric Snow Shovels ChargingSheri Kaz/Family Handyman

I tested all of these shovels over four very different snow events. The first snow hit the warm pavement, resulting in a slushy mess with an inch and a half of wet rain/snow mix. It was the soupy kind of snow that would freeze into an ice rink overnight. The second snow had chunky slush under a few inches of lighter snow on top. The next snow was 5 inches of heavy wet snow, followed by 8 more inches in the same 24 hours. (Whew!)

I normally use a 21-inch cordless Toro snowblower, but it’s not ideal for my uneven surfaces or tight areas. And I certainly can’t use it on my front porch or to dig out my mailbox, so I was hopeful that an electric snow shovel would save my back. Mission accomplished.

Voltask 12 Inch Cordless Snow Shovel in drivewaySheri Kaz/Family Handyman

To test each shovel, I used them on the driveway, including clearing the huge piles the snow plow left behind at the end of the drive (multiple times). I also tried them on my uneven and crumbling patio pavers, as well as in the grass to make a path for my tiny dog.

When determining scores for each, I rated them for ease of set-up and assembly, price, durability and construction, noting the type of snow they could handle (like slushy, powdery, compact, heavy and wet). Next, I tested them on a variety of surfaces from smooth concrete to wooden decks to uneven surfaces. Features such as adjustable output angles and variable speeds are noted as well as overall maneuverability and the weight of each shovel. 

Toro Corded Power Shovel with ruler on the sideSheri Kaz/Family Handyman

Finally, I measured and tested the clearing depth, width and throwing distance, which varied by snow type. Additionally, I let some of the neighbor ladies try them out as I watched them struggle with conventional shovels. Like me, they were convinced an electric shovel was the only way to go.

FAQ

Are electric snow shovels worth it?

If you want to avoid the pain of using a conventional shovel but don’t want to splurge for a snowblower, an electric shovel is the way to go. These wonderful inventions are compact, taking up about the same space in a closet as a manual shovel and they’re fairly lightweight. They come in a variety of styles, cutting depths and widths, and you can get a decent shovel for under $200. They don’t require gas or emit fumes, and they are oh-so easy to use. The best part is that it takes less time and energy to clear your sidewalk, patio or driveway with an electric snow shovel. Is an electric snow shovel worth it? Absolutely!

What is the most efficient snow shoveling?

If you’re looking to make snow removal fast and painless, a machine that blows the snow is the best option. Luckily, you no longer need a full-blown snowblower to accomplish the job. An electric snow shovel is the best way to clear small areas and tight spaces quickly and efficiently. 

When is the best time to shovel snow?

The best time to shovel snow is while it’s still falling. If you periodically clear your driveway or sidewalk, you won’t have to tackle deep drifts later on. The snow will also be lighter, meaning, you won’t have to exert yourself (or the machine) quite as much. If the snow has already fallen overnight, the best time to shovel snow is in the late morning. The sunlight helps melt the snow, and unlike the early morning or at night, there should be less ice to potentially slip on.

How do you keep snow from sticking to the shovel?

Wet, sticky snow can stick to the paddles of electric snow shovels, reducing efficiency and placing unnecessary strain on the motor. A coating of cooking spray prevents snow from sticking, allowing it to slide right off. If you don’t have cooking oil, a silicone spray is also an effective substitute. Find the best electric snow shovel to dig yourself out this winter, whether you have a huge driveway or a small sidewalk.