How does one avoid buried newspapers?

I have sucked three papers into my new snowblower this storm, causing a loose belt and many headaches. Anyone ever sue the paper and win? That's bs putting papers on sidewalks and driveways before a snow storm. This storm (NY) was predicted days in advance. I hate Newsday now! Any ideas to prevent this or similar experiences?

PS, using a folding pruning saw proved to be the best way to remove he jammed paper. I tried gas and fire too!!! Yeah fire.

Mike Paulsen

LawnSite Member
Tell the home owner your problem and ask if the paper "person" won't put the paper against the garage door. If getting out of the car for the paper "person" is to much ask home owner to put up a temperary paper box by the road. Just stick the post in the snow.Hope this help, it did me.Beats taking 10 minutes to get it out of the blower.

AB Lawn Care

LawnSite Senior Member
I have no problems in that area,my walker just shreds them :).But what really ticks me off is when homeowners leave rubber welcome mats and garden hoses in there drive ways or in front of there steps.I have had at least 4 brake downs becouse of that this year.I am serously thinking of puting a $100 charge for downtime due to clients leaving mats,hoses and so on out.NO JOKE!I loose $$$$ everytime they can't figure out why they can't leave there mats out.I had 1 client that had a twead mat(even worse that rubber becouse it tears when you try to pull it out)They have a side door at the side of the house that is right on there driveway.First snow it was light enough that we saw it.So we picked it up and put it on their step.The next storm they did not clue in.It was back in the drive.So this time we tryed to give them the hint,I put the mat in there recycling box.The next storm was a big one.We have our scag with the blade push the snow over for the walker.The snow (with the mat)was pushed over.The walker sucked it up and came to an instant stop.We tryed our usual method(punch a hole in the mat and put a chain through it and use the truck to pull it out)but the tweed mat just ripped.One of our other cleints on that street had a pick axe.That did not work.Finally we had to take the auger out of the walker.We have repairs down to a science so that only took us 5 mins(on and off).Needless to say we did not leave the mat at that house,now we have a nice tweed mat at our house with a rip in it :)This is why a $100 fee will start next year!

Pauls Mowing

LawnSite Member
Sioux Falls, SD
We've tried everything, calling the paper, talking to homeowners, all to no avail. Makes 'um look though when the blower eats them up and blows confetti all over their yards. Then it's their problem.



LawnSite Silver Member
well it makes me feel better that im not the only one with this major problem. Seems that every single storm i get at least one news paper cought in a snow blower. My toro 2 stage does not break a shear bolt like other blower when something gets sucked in so removing it is a task! Takes a good hour of slicing little by little with a utility nife! on saturday after running over 1 paper and being down for a hour i started walking back and fourth through the snow at the end of the drive way trying to feel burried news papers... found them at 90 percent of the houses i did! I have tried talkin to the customers.... they dont bother picking up there papers... i think my next step will to call up the newspaper company....

plow kid

Toledo Ohio!!!
If i spot a paper on a walk or drive that i plow i pick it up and take it, good reading at dunkin doughnuts.. lol
plus I finaly broke down and bought a new toro 6.5 horse power curve blower and i dont want to break it because the dealer told me he won't warrant rotor damage due to things getting sucked up


LawnSite Silver Member
Central CT
The only sure way is avoid doing residentials.

A good reason to be justly compensated for your efforts.

Our local paper supplies the carriers with fluorescent red bags for the paper so they are usually visible before being ingested. Also, folks around here are notorious complainers so the paper carrier usually sticks the paper in a door or box.


LawnSite Member
ne Pa
I allways thought that this is why snow blowers were created. Even more frustrating is the fact that the little string that held the paper together will work its way along the auger shaft till it gets to the end of the shaft and jam itself in the bushing. Even more amazing is the fact that the newsboy has the ability to predict when it will start snowing and have the paper there before the first flake falls. You never see a hole in the snow where the paper went in, like footprints or yellow snow. It's just there. New York Times Sunday Edition is the true test of any blower


LawnSite Senior Member
South West PA
I hit one of the Sunday before Christmas editions a few years ago. You know, the ones that are chock full of ads. Couldn't get it unplugged at the site, and had to take it home to get it back in action.

Since that incident, I put a clause in my contracts, that any hidden obstructions that cause a work stoppage, will result in additional charges to the customer.