Salt is an amazing little thing, isn’t it? Roman soldiers were paid in salt, which is where we get the term salary. Salt adds flavor to virtually any dish and even some cocktails, like margaritas. But salt can also be bad for you. And during the winter, rock salt can be a downright hazard to you, your loved ones (pets included) and, yes, even your concrete and pavement. So, now that winter has reared its ugly yet majestic head, how can you clear the ice and snow without resorting to the use of toxic aids like rock salt? Let’s take a look at cleaner, more environmentally-friendly ways to rid the ice this winter:
- One of those other -ium chlorides – Alternative deicers to keep in mind are potassium chloride and magnesium chloride. Potassium chloride will not harm vegetation and it is okay if it comes into contact with skin. The lowest temperature at which it will work as a deicer is 15° F. Magnesium chloride is another great choice for the environmentally conscious. It will still prove to be an effective deicer, even when the temperatures creep down to -13° F.
- Soak up the sun – I apologize for the tacky Sheryl Crow reference, but hey, it’s winter time. I’m thinking warm thoughts. Anyway, another method to remove ice and snow effectively is to make use of our most abundant resource: the sun. It’s best to wake up early and get right to shoveling, so by the time you’re done, the sun will be able to melt the ice a little more quickly as the temperatures creep up throughout the day.
- Hot water should do the trick – For those particularly vexing ice patches, a good method of treatment might be to boil a pot of water and pour it right on the ice. Follow through with a few good whacks with an ice pick or shovel and it should start to break apart. Remember to brush away or soak up the hot water with a cloth, or else you’ll just create more ice, thus prolonging your deicing project.
This winter, beat the ice with these techniques and others. Remember to stay up-to-date with news and weather forecast, so you know when snow will hit and how much of it. Don’t let ice get you down. Avoid damage to your pavement and concrete walkways with harmful and hazardous rock salt. Use an alternative deicer like potassium chloride or magnesium chloride. Or you could take advantage of waking up early to tackle your driveway and let the sun do the rest throughout the day. Or, even still, you can just pour some hot water on problem spots and tackle it further from there. Remember, Arrowhead Landscaping is here for you and your landscape and hardscape. Give us a call at 978-744-4487, or visit our website.