As we transition into the winter season, snow will start to pile up on your driveway and walkways. Removing snow and ice from these areas is important for your safety and preventing damage to your asphalt. Not all methods to remove snow and ice are created equal when it comes to keeping your asphalt in good condition.
Should you use a shovel to scrap the ice off your driveway or walkway? Are commercial deicers worth the money? Will rock salt cause damage to your asphalt? Below are some eco-friendly and less harmful ways to remove snow and ice from your asphalt.
Substitute Magnesium Chloride
The most common way to remove snow and ice for homeowners is to use rock salt. Rock salt can be damaging to your asphalt, your shoes, or your pet’s paws. It can also get pushed onto your lawn and cause damage to the grass, preventing it from looking green in the spring. Instead, try using magnesium chloride to help melt ice and snow after a storm.
Potassium chloride also has a low freezing point (15 degrees Fahrenheit) so it can be used to melt ice if you can’t find magnesium chloride.
The best way to distribute this is by putting the larger pellets in a spreader. This will break them down into smaller pieces and distribute them evenly across the surface of your driveway. Magnesium chloride contains a lower amount of chloride than other ice-melting options but is still corrosive enough to melt through the ice.
Remove Snow And Ice With Hot Water
Going back to basics can be the easiest way to keep your driveway and walkways clear this winter. Using boiling water or warm water from a garden hose to melt snow or ice will not damage your asphalt. Using the hose or a watering can will help you melt the ice faster than using traditional rock salt. Extending the life of your asphalt by avoiding commercial deicing products will help keep your home looking new and prevent the need for expensive repairs.
Save Money By Using Rubbing Alcohol
Alcohol is a common ingredient in other commercial deicers, so using it straight without any other mix-ins will be a safe option for your home while helping you have a safe winter.
Spraying rubbing alcohol to remove snow and ice is another safe way to keep your asphalt in good condition. 70% isopropyl alcohol has an extremely low freezing point which means that it can help remove ice without leaving any frozen residue.
You can also make a homemade deicing liquid by mixing a gallon of hot water, several drops of dish soap, and ¼ cup of rubbing alcohol. Spread this with a sprayer or just by dumping the liquid across the driveway. Then use your shovel to lift the newly melted ice.
Keep in mind that when you use water or other liquid, you always run the risk of creating more ice that can lead to slips and falls around your home.
Avoid Metal Shovels
A bladed shovel or a fully metal shovel may seem like the best option for scraping ice off your driveway, but it can actually damage your asphalt if you haven’t applied a seal coating to it. Chipping away at ice and snow with a metal shovel can not only be damaging to the driveway but also dangerous to you. Ice can splitter and shoot up towards your body.
When you create cracks or holes in your asphalt, this creates the potential for deicing products or moisture to get underneath your driveway and cause issues. Mold can start to grow around your driveway, the asphalt can start to lift, and cracks can make the once-smooth surface look worn. It is important to remove snow and ice in a safe way if you want your asphalt to look brand new for as long as possible.
Protect Your Asphalt With Precision Asphalt Maintenance
Our experts at Precision Asphalt Maintenance can repair asphalt driveways or apply seal coatings before a harsh winter hits. Seal coatings help to extend the life of your asphalt by keeping cracks or deformations from occurring. We have completed thousands of residential jobs in the state of Utah. This means that we have perfected our application techniques and can apply asphalt or sealants in no time.
Whether you are looking for pothole repair, slurry sealing, road grading, or other services, PAM offers it all. We want to help prepare your home or business for the upcoming winter by giving you quality asphalt. Contact us to get started on your project today!