Choosing the right ice management solution can be a daunting task. With the various products there are to choose from it’s helpful to know the pros and cons of each so that you can make the decision that is right for your property. There are several things to consider when choosing a product you plan to apply yourself. The surface you are applying it to, the active ingredient, the average winter temperature, and how it affects the environment are important aspects to keep in mind.
Most of the common ice melt products available today usually contain one of the following; calcium chloride, magnesium chloride, potassium chloride, or sodium chloride also known as rock salt. Calcium chloride and magnesium chloride are highly effective at temperatures below 20 degrees and they last longer than the others (which means less applications). They’re moderately priced but not great for the environment. Potassium chloride is much safer environmentally, however it damages concrete and can cost 3 to 5 times more than the others. Sodium chloride (plain old rock salt) is generally the cheapest solution and safe for the environment. Unfortunately, it only works in temperatures above 20 degrees and washes away quickly so frequent applications are required.
Many of these products can be highly corrosive to your surfaces and cause long term damage, especially for concrete. Some will speed up the deterioration of concrete and asphalt caused by the freezing and thawing cycles of the winter weather. Over time the damage results in the pitting of these surfaces. This degrades the aesthetics and safety at a faster rate. In addition to damage of the driveways and sidewalks traditional ice melt solutions leave behind a messy residue.
As they dry, a white dusty substance mixed with the dirt, debris, and gravel from the surrounding area creates a winter long coating that typically hangs on until the first rain of spring. It’s a messy and seemingly unavoidable side effect of traditional ice management methods. This disgusting dust has been ruining coat sleeves and pant legs for years. It gets tracked into foyers and hallways staining carpets and leaving nasty footprints all over the floors. The damage to concrete and asphalt and the extra cleaning of the carpets and floors both result in the same outcome. Extra time is required to clean and maintain them, and the frequent cleaning and quicker degradation of the exterior surfaces shortens their useful life and costs money to replace.
Perhaps the most important thing to consider is the safety of your residents. Ice left untreated on sidewalks and walkways creates a dangerous situation. All it takes is a slip or an ankle twist to cause a serious injury. If not monitored and treated properly, you are increasing the chances of your residents and their guests getting hurt. Whether it’s a winter long build up, or a thaw and refreeze, ensuring the surfaces are pretreated and receive ongoing and consistent treatments is a necessity.
Fresh Foam’s Ice-X is 100% chloride free. It is safe for the environment and works in subzero temperatures. It can be easily applied to any surface and will never cause damage because the main component is Isopropyl Alcohol. Ice-X leaves absolutely no residue and it’s non-corrosive. It is a 100% worry free product. You can purchase it and use it as part of your ice management solution throughout the winter with confidence. Confidence that your clothes will not be ruined, your surfaces will not be corroded, and your ice will be melted. Most important you can rest assured your residents have the safest conditions when exiting and entering your building.