Deicers for Driveways and Sidewalks

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Sodium Chloride

Sodium chloride, or rock salt, is the most common and cheapest deicer available. It effectively lowers the melting temperature (i.e. all salts do) of the ice and reduces moisture. The problem with this chemical compound is it isn’t very effective for very cold temperatures. Also, it can cause concrete spalling, kill grass, ruin soil, and make pets sick.

Calcium Chloride

The next best product, for a slightly higher cost, is calcium chloride. It is more effective at lower temperatures and isn’t as harmful for the yard, but still can damage concrete. ¬†Also, it attracts moisture, which can be good and bad. It is bad because you don’t want moisture on the driveway to create ice. The good is all deicers require water to react and create the desired effect.

Potassium Acetate

If yard and concrete problems are your biggest concern, then potassium chloride might be the best option. It is the least harmful while still maintaining a low effective working temperatures. If cost isn’t a factor, than this is the best choice for your house.

Calcium Magnesium Acetate

Calcium magnesium acetate (CMA) is safest for the yard and plants, but can still cause irritation for pets. It is not effective for very cold temperatures and can be very expensive in comparison to calcium chloride.

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Tyler Golberg

Tyler is the founder of Home Maintenance Tracker and a writer for HomeSpot HQ, an easy to use tool for managing maintence and projects for every house.