The Best Deicing Products to Prevent and Melt Ice at SISCU

Aerial view of winter roads

If you are looking to keep your roadways safe this winter, SISCU has the best variety of deicing products to minimize ice build-up. There are many different types of deicers, from Calcium Chloride to Magnesium Chloride to Rock Salt to Calcium Magnesium Acetate, and each has a different strength. Read more to learn about the variety of deicing products available at SICSU and choose the right ice melt for your roads.

Different Types of Deicing Products

Deciding on the right deicer for your roads comes down to a number of factors including budget, weather conditions, temperatures, road conditions, and more. Below you will find details about 4 of the most popular deicing products and what combination of these factors each is most effective in.

Calcium Chloride

Calcium Chloride is the strongest deicing product, as it utilizes hygroscopic properties to absorb moisture from the air and lower the freezing temperature of water to prevent ice buildup. Calcium Chloride comes in both pellet and flake form depending on your specific product needs. The most popular form of Calcium Chloride pellets is Peladow. These pellets have a large, round shape, allowing for them to be mobile upon application. Pellets can be spread out over a road surface or into tight spaces after they are spread over the ground. Calcium Chloride Peladow contains 90% chloride, allowing it to penetrate ice 3x faster than other chloride products. Additionally, it is effective in temperatures as low as -25°F. Dowflake is the most effective form of Calcium Chloride flakes, containing 10% more chloride than other brand flakes at 83-87%. Calcium Chloride flakes have a hard, flat shape, allowing them to adhere to the road surface upon application. In this way, Calcium Chloride flakes must be applied precisely to avoid product waste, as they can not be moved around after application. While Calcium Chloride pellets and flakes contain the highest chloride concentrations, they can pose harm to surrounding plant and animal life, and should not come into direct contact with these populations. Calcium Chloride is best for the treatment of roads in cold climates that do not border plants or have high volumes of animal traffic.

Magnesium Chloride

Magnesium Chloride is another type of hygroscopic salt that is slightly less concentrated than Calcium Chloride but can also absorb moisture from the air to lower the freezing point of water and prevent ice. Magnesium Chloride is also available in pellet and flake forms, and both are effective in temperatures as low as -13°F. Magnesium Chloride pellets are mobile and can be spread out after application, while the hard, flat shape of Magnesium Chloride flakes allow them to adhere strongly to the road surface. Magnesium Chloride does not damage the concrete or pavement underneath an icy road and is safer to use around plants and animals. Magnesium Chloride is a more eco-friendly deicing product compared to Calcium Chloride due to its lower chloride concentrations. This product is less toxic and irritating for both people and animals and should be the chosen product if your road is surrounded by high-traffic areas.

Rock Salt

Rock Salt is the most affordable deicing product and is commonly used by towns and governments. It is readily available in bulk, and many organizations take advantage of this convenience. While Rock Salt can effectively melt large piles of both snow and ice, it can be very damaging to the pavement or concrete below. In this way, Rock Salt is not recommended for use on private roads or ones that are not already damaged. Additionally, Rock Salt has a lower effectiveness rate compared to both Calcium Chloride and Magnesium Chloride, meaning more product will be necessary to achieve the same deicing results. Rock Salt is most effective in temperatures above 15°F. If you are in need of large quantities of ice melt on a smaller budget, Rock Salt is a great alternative that will still help protect the safety of your roads.

Calcium Magnesium Acetate

Calcium Magnesium Acetate (CMA) is another type of deicer available at SISCU. This product is granulated calcium magnesium acetate, formulated from dolomitic lime and acetic acid. Calcium Magnesium Acetate is approved by the U.S. Federal Highway Administration as a low corrosion environmental alternative to road salt. In this way, the product effectively minimizes ice build-up while also protecting the pavement and concrete underneath the application. Calcium Magnesium Acetate is similar in price range to Rock Salt while being less harmful to both your roads and the surrounding environment. Another benefit to CMA is that the product can be stored for long periods of time without losing its effectiveness. You can safely purchase this ice melt in bulk and be able to use it for multiple winter seasons to come, making it more affordable. Calcium Magnesium Acetate is most effective in temperatures above 15°F, and has a residual effect, allowing it to continue to work for extended periods of time after application. Additionally, CMA does not produce a running brine, which also contributes to its ability to remain effective for multiple storms with fewer applications. If you are looking for an affordable ice melt that is more environmentally friendly, Calcium Magnesium Acetate is a great product.

How to Apply Deicing Products

All deicing products are best applied by a professional crew that has the necessary equipment and proper training. Tank and sprayer trucks can easily apply a layer of ice melt over a large road surface much faster than someone applying the product by hand can. Additionally, a professional application ensures an even and precise application, ultimately resulting in less product waste and more money saved. If you do not have access to a professional ice management company such as Rasevic Companies, make sure to wear proper protective equipment and avoid skin contact with any ice melt product.

Deicing Products at SISCU

No matter what type of weather conditions or road surface your commercial business or municipality has, SISCU has the deicing product for you. To see a full list of deicer products available, click here, or fill out the form below to get a free quote for your next ice melt order today!

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