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Old 12-17-2010, 11:26 AM   #1
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calcium chloride on ice


Hi!

We've recently had our driveway poured about 3 months ago. They explained to us not to use salt on the driveway because of the harshness.

Being that it is the winter season much of the driveway is covered in ice. I would like to get the ice up, but don't want to use salt because of all the issues surrounding it.

Would you recommend using calcium chloride on new concrete? Is it safe (not sticker safe, but -really- safe)? The alternative would be to purchase a wide-blade ice chisel like thing on a stick to scrape the ice up. Would the chisel on a stick be better?

Thanks!

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Old 12-17-2010, 12:00 PM   #2
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calcium chloride on ice


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The alternative would be to purchase a wide-blade ice chisel like thing on a stick to scrape the ice up.
Ayuh,... Actually, the Safest thing for the concrete, And yer Back is plain ole Sand....

Bagged beach sand will do...

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Old 12-17-2010, 12:23 PM   #3
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calcium chloride on ice


I've never used sand before. We're having people over for christmas and I want to be ready before the last minute.

If you put sand down and people walk over it, does it get tracked throughout your house?

Thanks!
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Old 12-17-2010, 01:04 PM   #4
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calcium chloride on ice


it can get tracked all over the house, but so can calcium chloride. if you have small kids and/or pets, you'd much rather have sand on your floor than CC. Plus sand is easier to vacuum up, where CC will stain your floors and carpet with a white "salt like" haze

EDIT: if you do have small kids and/or indoor pets, you may want to check out the MSDS on calcium chloride before deciding
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Last edited by Mr Chips; 12-17-2010 at 01:09 PM.
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Old 12-17-2010, 01:12 PM   #5
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calcium chloride on ice


thanks for the info. I do have pets and will avoid calcium chloride.

So maybe the answer is old fashioned elbow grease and/or sand...
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Old 12-17-2010, 01:15 PM   #6
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calcium chloride on ice


that, and think warm thoughts.....
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Old 12-17-2010, 03:47 PM   #7
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calcium chloride on ice


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that, and think warm thoughts.....
Magnesium chloride is fine and not harmful for pets but... I would not use anything for first year on fresh concrete unless you can get your hands on a product called magic -0. Sold by taconic maintenance in the USA google it. ( former ice melter supplier from Canada )
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Old 12-18-2010, 02:11 PM   #8
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calcium chloride on ice


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I've never used sand before. We're having people over for christmas and I want to be ready before the last minute.

If you put sand down and people walk over it, does it get tracked throughout your house?

Thanks!
Not sure if you wear shoes in the house or not, but before people arrive just put several pairs of shoes inside the front door. People will see the shoes and just assume they need to follow suit. That way you won't be the one saying: "Please take your shoes off".
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Old 12-18-2010, 02:45 PM   #9
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calcium chloride on ice


If you chop the ice, you risk chipping the concrete- more food for thought. The sand sounds like the best advice.
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Old 12-18-2010, 03:48 PM   #10
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calcium chloride on ice


Standard road salt is sodium chloride, which aggressively attacks concrete due to freeze/thaw action and attack on steel reinforcing. Bad news. Calcium chloride is less aggressive to concrete and steel, still not a great idea.

If you can afford it, there is a product made from calcium-magnesium acetate which is a decent ice melter, is not aggressive towards concrete, and is claimed to be non-toxic to humans. Sometimes sold as "pet safe" deicer. I have some, it does not melt snow or ice as effectively as either road salt or calcium chloride, but it is less aggressive, so perhaps worth it.
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Old 12-18-2010, 05:54 PM   #11
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calcium chloride on ice


I would recommend using NO deicer's for the course of the first winter. Most of the theory is to cover both the contractor & supplier's butt IMO, but it's going to be hard to put a defense together if damage were to follow.

Torpedo/concrete/sharp sand are all great alteratives, as well as landscaping & media blasting product called "Black Beauty". The reason the BB is best is because it absorbs the sun's rays and melts ice much faster.

Just a word on de-icers & concrete. There is a lot of is-conceptions, as well as false advertising abound. Just because it says "safe for concrete", doesn't ean squat. Most of these companies won't put the percentages of ingredients on the bag for a reason, and it's because they are almost exclusively 90%+ sodium chloride, AKA rock salt.

And, in all reality, plain old rock salt is still one of the safest de-icer's out there:

http://www.cement.org/tech/faq_deicers.asp
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Old 12-18-2010, 06:28 PM   #12
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calcium chloride on ice


Do you even know what kind of concrete was used for the driveway? If it a proper mix the first year problems could be minimized. I you have a lot of clear weather and even with -0F because of the sun if you have gotten most of the snow off so the radiant heat of the sun gets rid of the ice.

As a guideline, around here (MN) a good concrete supplier will refuse to deliver concrete for a drivweay or sidewalk unless it is a 4000+ psi mix with 5% air entrainment. They have found that it is cheaper to lose a job than to be stuck in a dispute with the customer or contractor that buys cheap and says it is the fault of the concrete and not the placement/finishing.

Dick
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Old 12-20-2010, 08:56 AM   #13
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calcium chloride on ice


thanks all for the responses. I forget the PSI and entrapment for the concrete.

It's tempting to use a type of salt, but I think I will just stick with the sand. I tried to go out there over the weekend and scrape (not stab) some of the ice up. That worked for about 10'x3' of sidewalk, but then I gave up on it because I was wiped out. I was hoping it would warm up so it would melt before xmas, but it doesn't look like it.

Thanks all for the responses, as usual.
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Old 12-23-2010, 02:04 PM   #14
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calcium chloride on ice


What about urea? It is non-corrosive and extremely effective. It is used at airports and throughout Europe. Its biggest downside is that it can cause leather to deteriorate. John

Last edited by john4153; 12-23-2010 at 02:04 PM. Reason: spelling
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Old 12-23-2010, 02:46 PM   #15
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Originally Posted by john4153
What about urea? It is non-corrosive and extremely effective. It is used at airports and throughout Europe. Its biggest downside is that it can cause leather to deteriorate. John
Calcium chloride actually heats up when in contact with moisture then cools really quickly. Salt only works to -5 celcius urea is milder but doesn't work to very low temperatures. You would want a product you lay down before a snowfall that prevents the ice from forming/bonding to pavement. You can get liquid magnesium chloride mixed with distillers soluble that you can spray first it will melt some accumulation then prevent the bond envirotech is the mfg in Colorado and they do have retail distributors in the us this product works down to -25 and is absolutely non corrosive.

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