Winter sure took its time getting here to Colorado this year. With its arrival comes one of the least pleasant tasks associated with snow: shoveling and melting driveways and sidewalks.
When the snow flies, we all know what needs to be done; but there are steps, like using ice melt products, we can take to make the job easier. Read on for tips and tricks on how to make your own ice-melting brine to use as an effective deterrent to ice buildup.
How Do Ice Melt Products Work?
Chemical ice melts are incredibly effective at preventing the buildup of ice. Spreading ice melt products before snow falls make it drastically easier to shovel snow, as it prevents the snow layer from adhering to the ground. This works by creating a brine, or a salty liquid solution, at the bottom of the snow, thawing it as it falls.
As a bonus, many of these ice melt products aren’t harmful to pets, concrete, or the environment. Rocky Mountain BioAg® offers a variety of ice melt products that are gentle on soils and stormwater, plants and microbes, and even people and pets.
What Types of Ice Melt Products Are There?
Rocky Mountain BioAg® has a collection of environmentally friendly ice melt for eco-conscious customers to choose from. You can use any of these to make your own ice-melting brine! Ice-melting brines are easy to apply and can help get coverage in areas where dry ice melt gets washed or swept away.
Popular Ice Melt Products:
GroundWorks Natural Ice Melt
Arctic ECO Green Icemelter
For those of us that live in snowy climates where the temperature doesn't sink too far below zero, GroundWorks Natural Ice Melt is a great choice. This potassium chloride-based product is incredibly gentle on soils and stormwater systems, and it won’t hurt pets who walk on it.
Arctic Eco Green:
For those who live in very cold climates where temperatures drop well below zero, Arctic ECO Green Icemelt is a great choice. Arctic ECO Green works great at temperatures below -20°F, but it can burn pets’ paws, so get those boots on the doggies.
How to Make Your Own DIY Ice Melt Brine
Once you have selected the best green ice melt product for your needs, making the brine is very simple. You just dissolve the ice melt in water. Different products will reach different saturations, so take the measurements with a grain of (ice-melting) salt.
Steps to Making DIY Ice Melt Brine:
Step 1: Gather ice melt product and water
Step 2: Stir granules of ice melt into water at a ratio of 25% ice melt to 75% water
Step 3: Transfer to watering can or spreading tool of choice
How to Apply Ice Melt Brine
After the brine is made, you can apply it with most any tool. Flowzone sprayers are a great option. Flowzones are battery-powered and powerful, ensuring good coverage to keep ice from forming. A bucket or a cup to splash the brine across a sidewalk or a driveway is also a great option.
When Should I Use My Deicing Brine?
The most important thing to remember about using an ice-melting brine is that it works best before the snow falls. A brine will ensure good coverage, and it will keep the bottom layer of snow from adhering to surfaces below.
Professional snow removal companies can get a step ahead by pre-treating areas before a snow, making shorter work for the shoveling teams. Airports even have great success liquefying Winter Warrior Runway Control Deicer and applying with sprayer trucks to keep busy airports open through the toughest storms.
Should I Ever Use Dry Ice Melt?
If the snow is flying and the shovel is scraping, dry ice melters are the best option. Using dry product allows the ice melt plenty of time to work, but it also provides a good traction surface, so people are less likely to slip when walking on icy surfaces.
However you prefer to use ice melt, Rocky Mountain BioAg®’s curated collection offers only the highest quality and safest ice melting products on the market. Bags are ready to ship from our facilities and be at your front door in just a few days. RMBA has bulk quantities available at warehouses around the country, so even large orders can be at your business right when you need them.