Ice Melt Ice Melting Salt Different Type of ice Melters

Beach Party with Carl Failsafe and Ice Melt

 

We are Complete Facilities Supply and we are located in Manassas Va. We normally stock  Ice melt in 50lb plastic bags. This article will highlight different type of Ice and Snow melter, such as Magnesium Chloride, Calcium Chloride, Calcium Magnesium Acetate (CMA).  Contact us if you would like a more detailed discussion.

I have included some PDF files if you would like to read up on the different kinds of Ice Melt chemicals and their advantages and disadvantages.

Different Types of Ice Melt “copied and pasted from Turf iNfo for the North Central US, University of Nebraska – Lincoln, see reference below”

Quick overview

  1.  “Our study observed that magnesium in any form was very damaging to the concrete. Magnesium chloride produced significant concrete crumbling because of widespread replacement of CSH by non-cementitious.”
  2.  “When calcium chloride and salt are combined, they complement each other as
    snow and ice control chemicals. When combined, the deliquescent calcium chloride
    absorbs moisture from its surroundings releasing heat and thereby increasing the rate of
    solution of sodium chloride. These reactions produce brine quickly which sustains the
    continued brine generation of the two chemicals.”

Sodium chloride (NaCl)

This chemical, commonly referred to as rock salt, is the most
prevalent deicing chemical, and in general, has the lowest price tag of all deicers. Rock salt first
has been used as a road deicer since the 1940’s. An estimated 10 to 14 million tons will be
used yearly on roads in the United States and Canada. Sodium chloride, when mixed with
water, works best at a 23.3 percent mixture, with an associated freeze point temperature of –5.8
0F. The practical working temperature of the product, however, ranges between 15 and 20 0F.

Magnesium chloride (MgCl)

For MgCl the optimum solution for freeze point protection is 21.6
percent. The solution has a freeze point of –28 0F. MgCl is usually sold in a 30 percent
concentration with an associated freeze point of 3 0F.

Calcium chloride (CaCl)

CaCl is typically sold at a 30 percent concentration with a freeze point
of –60 0F. The product’s practical melting temperature, however, is typically considered to be
approximately –10 0F. Available in flakes, pellets or liquid, CaCl produces an exothermic
reaction, giving off heat. Because of this, it often performs better than many other deicing salts,
especially at lower temperatures. Some highway departments spray liquid CaCl over rock salt to
lower its melting temperature.

Potassium chloride (KCl)

KCl is similar to or equivalent to K based fertilizer products. It is
often promoted as beneficial to plants. KCl as a deicer that doesn’t work unless
temperatures are more than 25 0F. KCl as a stand alone product is relatively expensive and
more oftern is seen as a part of a deicer blend with marketing promoting its benefit for plant
health. At concentrations used for deicing and subsequent road splash and accumulation in low areas, salt burn with KCl may occur.

Calcium magnesium acetate (CMA)

Purchased as a solid and liquefied prior to use,
Calcium magnesium acetate, commonly known as CMA, is typically used at a 25 percent
concentration, which has a freeze point of 1 0F . At a 32 percent concentration, CMA has a
freeze point of –18 0F. The practical working temperature of CMA is approximately -18 0F.
CMA may be as much as 30 times the cost of rock salt. CMA use is primarily restricted to
areas where damage to concrete surfaces, such as parking garages, cannot be tolerated.

Potassium acetate (KAc)

An additional non-chloride product that has a 50 percent
concentration with a freeze point of –76 0F . Because of cost (KAc is the most expensive of
deicing products) use is restricted to high value locations such as airports.

Urea, ammonium sulfate, and other nitrogen salts

Nitrogen salts are rarely used as
deicers because of the potential for nitrogen runoff and leaching into water sources. In many
areas nitrogen salts are not approved for deicing because of these environmental concerns.

Corrosion-inhibiting salt

Many deicing salts are sold with added corrosion inhibitors. These
materials may reduce corrosion, but not eliminate it entirely. No deicing salt, even if it contains a
corrosion inhibitor, is entirely corrosion proof. Corrosion-inhibiting additives vary and their
effects on plants and the environment are often unknown. Since many corrosion-inhibiting
materials are combinations of one or more of the chloride salts mentioned above, some damage
to vegetation could be expected when using these products.

Abrasives

Abrasives such as sand, cinders, and ash have relatively few impacts on the
environment or plants. These materials do not melt ice but improve traction on slippery
surfaces. The disadvantage of these materials is that they accumulate in the landscape, and
may require frequent removal or create dust problems when they dry later in the year after the
deicing season.

Enhanced radiation absorbers

Application of a dark colored material such as coal ash
graphite or fertilizers such as Milorganite to a snow or ice surface increases radiation (sun
energy) absorption and accelerates the rate of melting. These materials generally work slowly,
may be tracked into buildings, and lose effectiveness as they are covered by new snow and ice.

Combination products

Various products are sold which contain combinations of one or more
of the compounds previously mentioned. The label should indicate the percentage of different
compounds in the product. Generally the combination product is going to perform most like the
dominant compound in the mixture.

Results Conclusions of Ice Melt research:

Effects of Various Deicing Chemicals on Pavement Concrete Deterioration
HYOMIN LEE, ROBERT D. CODY, ANITA M. CODY, AND PAUL G. SPRY
Our study observed that magnesium in any form was very damaging to the concrete. Magnesium chloride produced significant concrete crumbling because of widespread replacement of CSH by non-cementitious.”
Effects of Various Deicing Chemicals on Pavement Concrete Deterioration

Turf iNfo for the North Central US
University of Nebraska – Lincoln
Good Description of the Different Types of Ice Melters
Deicing Agents: Pros and Cons

COMPREHENSIVE EVALUATION OF BRIDGE ANTI-ICING TECHNOLOGIES – FINAL REPORT
Prepared by:Jing Zhang, Deben Das, Rorik Peterson, Doug Goering
Department of Mechanical Engineering
University of Alaska Fairbanks
Alaska University Transportation Center
Institute of Northern Engineering
P.O. Box 755910
Fairbanks, Alaska 99775-5910

“When calcium chloride and salt are combined, they complement each other as
snow and ice control chemicals. When combined, the deliquescent calcium chloride
absorbs moisture from its surroundings releasing heat and thereby increasing the rate of
solution of sodium chloride. These reactions produce brine quickly which sustains the
continued brine generation of the two chemicals.

COMPREHENSIVE EVALUATION OF BRIDGE ANTI-ICING TECHNOLOGIES – FINAL REPORT

Please contact us for more information