Winter maintenance agencies are continually searching for the perfect plow blade: durable, long-wearing, cost-effective, and effective in a range of conditions. Stainless steel and carbide-insert blades are staples of most DOTs’ fleets, and agencies test new products each year, like flexible blade assemblies designed to conform to the roadway surface.
A sampling of state specifications for plows and plow blades.
Every year, Clear Roads member states share the results of pilot-testing of winter maintenance products and materials that their agencies have conducted.
Products reviewed include:
- BlockBuster blades – hammerhead carbide
- Ice-O-Force underbody blades
- Joma plow blades
- Kuper Kombi H ceramic-insert blades
- Lake Effect blade assembly
- Monroe flex plow with trip edge
- PolarFlex blades
- Power float valves
Other Research and Resources
- Investigate Plow Blade Optimization: Researchers investigated the cost-effectiveness of different types of plow blades. (Ohio DOT, 2015)
- Performance Evaluation of Snow and Ice Plows: A research project that evaluated common snowplow brands on performance indicators such as blade types, scraping forces and shock acceleration, among other suggested parameters. (Illinois DOT, 2015)
- Joma Snowplow Blade Life Span: A Survey of State Experience: A research synthesis on the use and performance of Joma blades. (Minnesota DOT, 2014)
- Snow Plow Cutting Edges for Improved Plowing Performance, Reduced Blade Wear, and Reduced Surface Impacts: A research synthesis on snowplow cutting edge research. (Minnesota DOT, 2011)
- Multiple Blade Plow Prototypes: Clear Roads initiated and funded the development of innovative prototype snowplows capable of tackling a range of winter road conditions with the use of multiple blades. (2010)
- Joma Plow Blade Evaluation: A report summarizing information gathered on Joma blades. (Ohio DOT, 2010)
- Measurement of Ice Scraping Forces on Snowplow Underbody Blades: In this study, several new cutting edges were tested in a series of closed road tests. The study also included measurement of ice scraping forces by in-service trucks. (Iowa DOT, 1997)
Videos from Clear Roads’ Multiple Blade Plow Prototype project.
|Indiana DOT Prototype||
Iowa DOT Prototype
|Iowa DOT – Road Cleared Before and After||Iowa DOT – Slush Blade Removing Water|