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How to fix an icy driveway without salt
There are a number of more environmentally friendly alternatives to salt that will melt ice such as e.g magnesium-chloride but
over all they can still be very bad for animals, plants and trees when used in large quantities. However the ice itself is
not really a problem. The problem is that ice is slippery and we could just address that:
I use most of the time sand when I need something that has an immediate effect. My favorite is however snow. Yes, just throw a liberal amount of snow on the driveway and wait for a day. It will not take immediate effect because it takes about a day for the snow to bind to the ice in order to form a rough, solid and non slippery surface but it works very well.
- Sand, very good and cheap. You will even be able to recycle some of it in spring. Just sweep the remaining sand on a sunny and dry day with a broom into a bucket and keep it for next year.
- Ashes from a wood fire place. It can get a bit messy but it is a good fertilizer and helps plants to grow better.
- Cat litter.
Here is an example. We had some freezing rain a few days ago and now everything is very shiny and ... slippery.
freezing rain: everything is now super slippery
a very icy driveway, one can barely walk on this
Just take some snow and throw it on top.
throw a liberal amount of snow onto the ice and wait
However be careful it does not have any immediate effect! The snow needs to bind to the ice and that will take about one day. You can't use it if you need to take immediate action but it is very good in the long term. I do this usually in the evening when nobody is using the driveway. It will be a nice rough surface once snow and ice have baked together and then it is very easy to drive over it or walk on it.
© 2004-2023 Guido Socher