Snow is accumulating on your driveway, sidewalk, and the steps to the front door and you are out of rock salt or ice melter. It is imperative that you get something down to stop the snow from turning into ice. But what can one use in a pinch? Listed below are the best homemade ice melt quick fixes, when store bought brands are unavailable. Each remedy will be listed from best to worse for their deicing abilities, with pros and cons; ending with a closing comment.
1. Table salt, kosher salt and sea salt
Heat is generated because of the exothermic reaction that takes place between the salt and water, which lowers the freezing point of the water in the snow. In other words, this chemical reaction hinders the advancement of the water’s freezing process. This is why road crews use salt for deicing.
•An effective ice melt or deicer.
•Larger grained salt, like kosher salt, is useful for traction.
•Salt in an substantial amount is considered caustic and toxic
•Environmentally harmful, in moderate and large quantities, to plants, animals, water wells, drinking water, aquatic ecosystems and humans.
For more information on how salt adversely affects our landscape click here.
Salt on sidewalks can harm your pets and the neighbor’s pet. Click here to read this informative article.
2. Rubbing alcohol
Perhaps not as effective as salt where ice melt is concerned, but certainly not as toxic or harmful either.Rubbing alcohol or Isopropyl ALCOHOL has a freezing temperature point at about -20 degrees Fahrenheit which slows the freezing process of water in ice and snow. Isopropyl alcohol can be found in most commercial ice melt and windshield deicing products.
•Suitable as an ice melt
•Less harmful than salt
•More than moderate quantities can cause skin, eye, and lung irritation
Fertilizer can be spread atop the ice or snow. The warming effects of the fertilizer will very slowly begin to melt the ice, but not as quickly as salt or rubbing alcohol. Compost can comprise of ammonium sulfate, potassium chloride or urea.
•Somewhat effective as an ice melt
•Harmful when ice liquifies and fertilizer run-off enters municipal sewers and waterways which negatively affects nearby ecosystems.
After reading the details above, you could conclude that the best home made ice melts may not be best for the environment. There is a growing concern, in countries around the world, that man made chemicals and pollutants could destroy the environment to a point of no return. Thus, the movement of “Going Green” revolutionaries have emerged in the 21st century promoting clean energy solutions and alternatives to harsh chemicals being used today. Technological advancements for producing greener products have increased over the past years. Products that are safe for families, pets and the environment.
Is there an ice melt that is environmentally safe?
The answer is “yes”. And the name of the product is “Safe Paw Ice Melter”. Utilizing natural ingredients found in nature this break-through product is safe for families, pets and the surrounding ecosystems.
•An excellent deicer
•Will not harm humans, pets or the environment
•That only a few of the Earth’s populace will recognize the value of this product.
Here is a link to their MSDS (Material Safety Data Sheet) Click here.