Manually clearing your driveway or yard after a big snowstorm is a real pain. But a snow plow makes short work of it and saves you a lot of back-breaking effort. However, you may not want to invest in a big ride-on snow plow, especially if you don’t have much space. The good news is, you can use your riding lawn mower as a plow instead. This guide will explain how snow plow attachments work and give you some of my recommendations for the best ones.
Table of Contents
- Can a Riding Mower Be Used as a Snow Plow?
- What To Consider When Buying a Lawn Mower Snow Plow Attachment
- 10 Best Riding Lawn Mower Snow Plow Attachments
- 1. Arnold 46-Inch Snow Blade Attachment
- 2. MotoAlliance IMPACT 46″ Plow Kit
- 3. Husqvarna 48 Inch Tex-Style Lawn Tractor Frame Snow Dozer Plow Blade
- 4. MTD 46 in. Heavy-Duty All-Season Plow for MTD Manufactured Riding Lawn Mowers
- 5. CRAFTSMAN 52-in Zero-Turn Snow Plow
- 6. Agri-Fab Front Mount Plow Blade
- 7. John Deere Scraper Blade
- 8. CRAFTSMAN 42-In snow blade 42-in W x 15-in H Steel Snow Blade
- 9. Cub Cadet FastAttach All-Season Plow
- 10. Brinly-Hardy 42 in. Front Mount Snow Blade for RYOBI Electric Riding Mower
- Riding Mower Snow Plow FAQs
- Final Thoughts
Can a Riding Mower Be Used as a Snow Plow?
Yes, you can get an attachment for your riding mower that turns it into a snow plow. After removing the blade deck from underneath the mower, you can fix the plow onto the frame. Some of these attachments are designed for use with specific models while others are universal and fit on all riding mowers of a certain size. A higher powered mower is better for a snow plow attachment, and you need to add chains and weigh the back down to give you more traction.
When dealing with incredibly heavy snowfall, you may want to consider a snow blower attachment instead of a snow plow. However, for clearing a smaller amount of snow on a path or driveway, for example, a snow plow is excellent.
The obvious benefit of using your riding mower as a snow plow is that you don’t have to buy a second machine. You save a lot of money and you don’t need storage for a big snow plow. However, it’s vital that you check that your mower is suitable for a snow plow attachment and you pick the right one.
If you make the wrong choice, you could put excess strain on the mower and shorten its lifespan. The effectiveness of the snow plow is also dependent on getting the right fit for the mower.
What To Consider When Buying a Lawn Mower Snow Plow Attachment
Is it Compatible with my Mower?
The most important thing to consider is whether the attachment is compatible with your mower or not. Some brands have a specific attachment that only works with their riding mowers. You can also find universal ones and these will fit on mowers within a particular size range. Your mower also needs to meet the power requirements so it can safely push the snow plow without damaging the engine.
All snow plow attachments have clear guidelines about what riding mowers they are compatible with. Always double check and speak to the manufacturer if you are unsure, or you could do some serious damage to the mower.
Total Size of the Plow
Next, consider the total size of the plow once it’s attached to your mower. You need it to be wide enough to clear a good amount of snow. But, you don’t want a huge plow attachment if you only have a small yard to clear.
If you would rather a snow blower instead of a plow, you can see my guide on the 10 best lawn mower snow blower combos here.
Is Your Lawn Mower Built for Winter?
Riding mowers are primarily built for use in the dry weather. You don’t normally use them in the winter, so not all of them are capable of operating in the cold weather. But, a lot of mowers have attachments that make them useful in the winter, like snow plows, so they are geared up for the cold. It’s important that you check this before you attach a snow plow. Consider how heavy it is and whether it generates enough power.
The transaxle transfers the power from the engine into forward motion. If it is not powerful enough, you won’t get enough traction on snow and ice and the wheels will just spin instead of pushing you forward. You need a mower that produces a lot of torque to run well in the winter.
It’s worth checking with the manufacturer about winter use and whether they recommend it. Although there are some things you can do to help performance in the snow, you need to ensure that your mower is suitable in the first place.
10 Best Riding Lawn Mower Snow Plow Attachments
1. Arnold 46-Inch Snow Blade Attachment
The Arnold 46-inch Snow Blade Attachment is a near universal snow plow that fits on most well-known tractor brands. It is compatible with all Troy-Bilt, Bolens, Yard Machines, Huskee, and MTD Gold riding mowers built from 2001 and later. It also fits Cub Cadet XT-1 and XT-2 Enduro series models, and Series 1000 and 1500 LT, GT and LTX lawn tractors. If you’ve got a riding mower or lawn tractor built in the last few decades, chances are that this attachment will fit.
The snow plow itself has a 46 inch blade, which is more than enough to clear a big area in no time. The blade quickly adjusts from a straight angle to a 25 degree angle on the left or right, allowing you to easily clear a path in one pass. The skid shoes on the bottom stop the blade from dragging along the ground and damaging the surface you are clearing. It’s very lightweight and easy to maneuver, even with a smaller riding mower, but the construction is still solid.
The only downside to this snow plow is that the instructions for putting it together and attaching it to your mower are a bit vague and if you are not very mechanically minded, you may struggle. However, once it’s on, it’s very reliable and easy to use.
2. MotoAlliance IMPACT 46″ Plow Kit
The MotoAlliance IMPACT 46” Plow Kit is an excellent snow plow attachment that is simple to attach and detach from your mower. You only need to screw 4 bolts in, so it’s quick to change over when winter ends. It fits a variety of tractors including the Cub Cadet XT-1 and XT-2 models, Husqvarna tractors, and the John Deere 100 series. The interior mount is 13 inches, so as long as this fits onto the frame of your riding mower, it should be fine. If you get in touch with the manufacturer, they will check whether it’s compatible for you.
The plow itself is very robust. It is made from a single piece of 11-gauge steel with a support bar for added stability. It distributes the weight across the chassis of the mower very well, so you can move heavy piles of snow without putting too much excess stress on the engine.
You can even use it for sand and dirt and there is a separate wearbar for dirt leveling. The blade itself can be changed to 3 different angles to easily clear a path and pile snow where you want it. The skid feet are adjustable too, so you can get the perfect height for working on different surfaces.
The MotoAlliance IMPACT plow attachment is incredibly well-built and it has more adjustable features than some other options on this list. If you get a lot of snow and you also want to use it for things like dirt leveling during the rest of the year, this is ideal. But if you only use it for occasional snow clearing, you can find a cheaper option that suits your needs.
3. Husqvarna 48 Inch Tex-Style Lawn Tractor Frame Snow Dozer Plow Blade
If you own a Husqvarana lawn tractor, their 48 Inch Tex-Style Lawn Tractor Frame Snow Dozer Plow Blade is your best choice. This is another one that is very simple to fit because, once you have attached the mounting frame, you can take it on and off without tools. You don’t need to remove the mounting frame either, so switching between the snow plow and the mower blade is seamless.
It fits on most Husqvarna tractors, but not all. The compatible models are:
- TS 354XD
- TS 248XD
- TS 148XK
- TS 146XK
- TS 242XD
- TS 142K
- TS 148X
This snow plow attachment is easy to operate too. The handle allows you to lift it from your tractor seat, and the removable skid shoes keep it elevated so it doesn’t scrape the ground. The blade itself is very durable too and it’s coated in yellow dichromate so it won’t rust.
If you have a compatible Husqvarna tractor, this is one of the best snow plow attachments because it’s so easy to use and the build quality is excellent. It’s also a slightly larger blade than the standard 46 inch size that you often see, so you’ll clear the area a bit faster too.
4. MTD 46 in. Heavy-Duty All-Season Plow for MTD Manufactured Riding Lawn Mowers
MTD attachments are always well-built using high-quality materials, and their Heavy-Duty All-Season Snow Plow is no exception. The durable steel blade easily clears large quantities of snow and it holds up to regular use. The skid shoes on it are very tough, so you can use it on any surface, including gravel driveways. It can only be angled up to 25 degrees, which is slightly lower than other blades on this list. That said, the angle is still high enough to clear a path, so it shouldn’t make that much difference. You also have a great operating handle that allows you raise and lower the blade without getting off the mower.
You can use this attachment with a big range of mowers and lawn tractors. It fits on any Troy-Bilt, Bolens, Yard Machines, Huskee and MTD Gold riding mowers manufactured before 2001. It’s also compatible with Cub Cadet XT-1 and XT-2 Enduro Series Tractors and Series 1000 and 1500 LT, GT and LTX lawn tractors.
This is quite a basic attachment compared with some of the others as you have less options for angling the blade, etc. However, it’s very well-built and it’s also compatible with a huge range of mowers, so it’s ideal if you want something simple that gets the job done.
5. CRAFTSMAN 52-in Zero-Turn Snow Plow
The CRAFTSMAN Zero-Turn mower is one of the most efficient riding mowers on the market. The zero-turn radius means that you can easily maneuver in any space and cut your mowing time in half. You can get the same benefit when plowing snow with their 52-in Snow Plow attachment. When you combine the large 52 inch blade with the zero-turn capabilities of the mower, you can clear big spaces in next to no time. If it’s ease and efficiency that you’re after, this combination is about as good as you can get.
The blade is constructed from tough 12-gauge steel, so it’s capable of moving dirt and gravel as well as snow. It’s great for moving mulch or big piles of leaves around the garden too. With this attachment, you can make your zero-turn plow even more useful, all year around. It also features a comfort-grip handle to raise and lower the blade from a seated position.
It is compatible with all CRAFTSMAN Zero-Turn mowers manufactured after 2019. If you have one of these mowers, this snow plow attachment is a game changer.
6. Agri-Fab Front Mount Plow Blade
The Agri-Fab Front Mount Plow Blade will work with almost any riding mower. It’s a simple option that is effective with moderate amounts of snow. However, if you get a lot of heavy snowfall, you may want a more robust plow. Anything up to 8 inches is fine, but more than that and this plow attachment will struggle.
It’s easy to lift and change the angle from a seated position, and the blade is made from quality steel. It also comes with adjustable skid shoes and a replaceable scraper bar. You can put it together easily and it attaches to the mower with a simple mechanism. It works with all kinds of mowers including Husqvarna, Cub Cadet 1500 Series, Huskee, MTD, Craftsman, John Deere, Murray, Toro, and Poulan Pro. It’s best to double check with the manufacturer before you buy, but it’s likely that it will fit your mower.
If you want a basic, affordable option that will clear small amounts of snow, this is great. But don’t expect it to stand up to big piles of snow on a regular basis.
7. John Deere Scraper Blade
The John Deere Scraper Blade has some interesting design features that make it more effective, even with a small riding mower, and increase its lifespan. The 46 inch blade is nicely curved, so it rolls snow and makes it much easier to move. Straighter blades that push the snow rely on sheer power, so they don’t work as well with smaller machines. The blade is also bolted on and can be replaced when needed. It’s simple to maneuver from your seat using the comfortable handle.
The scraper blade fits on the 100 Series, L100 Series, LA100 Series, and the D100 Series. It cuts through the snow well, but if you have heavy, wet snow, you may need to take smaller cuts. If you have a John Deere mower, this is a better option than some of the other universal blades that fit all lawn tractors.
8. CRAFTSMAN 42-In snow blade 42-in W x 15-in H Steel Snow Blade
The CRAFTSMAN 42-In Snow Blade is a nice lightweight attachment with excellent clearing capabilities. The removable steel snow blade can be replaced when needed, so this will last you for years to come. It also has a clever trip spring on the back of the blade, which allows movement and absorbs impact when moving over obstacles. This can save your mower from some serious damage. The blade can be pivoted and raised from a seated position using the handle.
It fits the CMX, 247 & 917 model tractors and works best on models with rear tires between 18 and 22 inches. It comes with mounting brackets that they describe as universal, so it will fit a lot of other mowers as well. It should fit with Husqvarna and MTD models, but you should double check first, just in case.
9. Cub Cadet FastAttach All-Season Plow
As the name suggests, the Cub Cadet FastAttach All-Season Plow is one of the easiest attachments to fit. You just need to align it and then latch it on and lock it. It can be done in no time without any tools. However, it is only designed for use with the XT-1 and XT-2 Enduro Series lawn tractors.
The 12-gauge steel blade is very versatile and capable of moving dirt, gravel, and garden waste as well as snow. So, this simple attachment helps you get a lot more use out of your Cub Cadet. It also has an adjustable shave plate that can be removed and reversed to get more use out of it. It can easily cut through thick snow, especially if you use chains for added traction. When the plow gets stuck on wet snow, you can angle the plow and do a pass with half the blade to move it.
If you have an XT-1 or XT-2 Enduro Series lawn tractor, this is the one to go for because it’s robust and so easy to attach and detach once you have it all set up.
10. Brinly-Hardy 42 in. Front Mount Snow Blade for RYOBI Electric Riding Mower
This Brinly-Hardy 42 in. Front Mount Snow Blade is compatible with the RY48110 and RY48111 models of RYOBI electric riding mower. It’s a compact 42 inch blade that is easy to store and light to operate. The electric mowers are not quite as powerful so you need to use a slightly smaller plow on the front, or you risk damaging the motor.
Installing the snow blade itself is relatively easy. It comes with a mounting kit, which is attached and left on, and the snow blade fixes onto it. Once you have done the initial install, it’s quite simple to remove it and attach it as needed. The blade is made from heavy-duty steel and can be adjusted to 3 different angles for precise snow clearing.
You need to be careful when putting attachments on electric mowers, so it’s best to stick to this snow blade instead of some of the universal ones that fit on any mower.
Riding Mower Snow Plow FAQs
Can Plowing Snow With Your Riding Mower Damage the Lawn Mower?
Some people claim that plowing snow with your riding mower is a bad idea because it causes damage. There are concerns about it putting extra stress on the engine and shortening the life of the transmission because you are carrying a lot of extra weight. However, most of those issues come from improper use and incompatible attachments.
When you choose a snow plow, check that it is compatible with your mower or lawn tractor. Make sure that you fit it correctly and you don’t try to shift more snow than it can realistically handle. Finally, using a weight kit and chains will give more traction and reduce the load on the transmission. As long as you are using the right snow plow attachment and operating it correctly, you shouldn’t do any damage to the mower.
Should You Add Extra Weight to a Lawn Tractor for Better Traction?
Yes, adding weight to the back of your lawn mower or tractor will give you better traction. This makes it easier for you to clear snow and prevents damage to the lawn tractor. Most manufacturers sell specialist weight kits that attach to the back. You’ll often see these on the product pages when you’re buying attachments.
There are also a few DIY solutions if you want to save a bit of money. You can actually add liquid antifreeze to the tires to weigh them down, for example. You can find a tutorial to help you do this here.
Should You Add Tire Chains to Your Riding Mower in the Winter?
Yes, tire chains are a must when you are using your riding mower in the winter, especially with a snow plow on the front. You lose all of your traction in the snow and ice and the transmission has to work overtime, putting a lot of unnecessary strain on the mower. But if you add some tire chains, you get more grip and avoid this issue. It’ll be so much easier to shift large piles of snow too. You’ll find tire chain sets from the manufacturer of your tractor.
Can The Riding Mower Plow Blade Damage Your Lawn?
Yes, you can damage your lawn with a snow plow blade if you are not careful. But, again, this is a problem caused by incorrect operation, rather than the design of the snow plow blade itself. Usually, it happens when people don’t realize that the blade is digging into the edges of the lawn and ripping chunks out.
You can avoid this by marking the edges of the lawn with some stakes before you get started. Make sure that the skid feet are adjusted to the right height and you control the snow plow blade well so it doesn’t scrape right against the grass. As long as you are careful, you can clear the snow and keep your grass intact.
Is It Dangerous to Plow Steep Driveways with a Riding Mower?
Yes, if you’re working on a steep driveway, you need a lot of traction. You need a 4×4 machine, preferably a tractor, which can easily push the plow blade up the slope without slipping in the snow and ice. A riding mower may not have the required power and it could be very dangerous.
Turning your riding lawn mower into a snow plow is a brilliant way to save yourself a lot of time and effort. It also helps you get more use out of your mower all year around. But adding that extra weight could damage your mower if you don’t pick a suitable snow plow blade and use the required weights and tire chains. When in doubt, always check with the manufacturer to ensure that your chosen snow plow is compatible before you do anything.
Jamie is the founder of The Backyard Pros. When he was 15 years old he started working at a garden centre helping people buy plants, gardening products, and lawn care products. He has real estate experience and he is a home owner. Jamie loves backyard projects, refinishing furniture, and enjoys sharing his knowledge online.