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A Word About Magic Salt

Discussion in 'Ice Management' started by Andy N., Oct 7, 2005.

  1. Andy N.

    Andy N. Senior Member
    Messages: 236

    Magic Salt is supposed to last longer than untreated rock salt. It has a longer residual value than untreated rock salt. Correct? So.....If I apply magic salt to a parking lot and it melts down like it should AND retains its value for the next snowfall (1/2" or less), thus causing me to not have to treat it again, I don't understand the point. Are you not leaving money on the table, instead of going and salting the parking lot again? Do you charge for the treatment anyway without having to retreat? I understand the other properties of magic salt, such as being active at lower temperatures, and less corrosive etc, but it seems to me, and correct me if I'm wrong (which I am MANY TIMES), that I would be leaving money on the table by not getting as many applications as I can out of different snow events.

    This question has been bugging me for quite some time. Those of you who use it, tell me the advantages that make it more PROFITABLE than regular rock salt.
     
  2. T-MAN

    T-MAN PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,363

    Good post, I have thought the same thing myself.

    Todd
     
  3. Andy N.

    Andy N. Senior Member
    Messages: 236

    I understand its purpose for DOT and township purposes, but for private contractors, seems like you are shooting yourself in the foot.

    Perhaps you can take on more accounts as the magic works longer?
     
  4. Mick

    Mick PlowSite.com Veteran
    from Maine
    Messages: 5,546

    That's been brought up before - that Magic treated salt works TOO good subsequently leading to less charge to the customer. One benefit you tout to the customer is SERVICE - you're providing the best products and techniques possible to provide top quality service. After all, you're going to have to charge more for that treated salt than for regular salt. Now if they're not impressed with that (and that's likely) there's another tack you can try. Offer to provide seasonal service. By using the treated salt, you use less product, laying it down less and plowing less snow depth - resulting in less wear and tear on your equipment. This is kind of like the argument against charging for plowing by the hour - no incentive for being efficient. So the bottom line is - no product or technique is suited for everybody. If your income depends on the number of times you plow and and amount of salt laid down - don't use treated salt.
     
  5. pbeering

    pbeering Senior Member
    Messages: 266

    You are selling your customer a clean lot, road, or drive. They care not how you do it. If you use a superior product, then you can charge accordingly. the efficiency of Magic allows you to compensate for other spiraling costs.
     
  6. procut1

    procut1 Senior Member
    Messages: 380

    Have tried magic a million times in every different condition and still cant tell the difference from untreated salt.
     
  7. sonjaab

    sonjaab PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,425

    You have to remember Magic Salt will melt snow and continue
    de-icing at 0 degrees or below freezing because of its coating.

    Plain salt STOPS working at these temps. and becomes useless.

    It will also lay down a brine at any temp. range that will continue
    to melt falling snow and prevent ice formation.

    This will be my 5th year using it and sure it costs a few bucks more
    to purchase !
    But I charge accordingly and have no customer complaints.............

    One good application per day will keep my walkways and steps
    along with heavy traffic areas black and wet..............

    The price works out to be LESS because of labor from re-shoveling
    and reapplying mag./cal. chloride/plain salt more than once a day.....

    We get a average of 225 inches per season here in lake effect land
    of NY. So its pretty easy to know what works the best !

    I doubted it at first, but 1 season changed MY mind quick!..........geo :drinkup:

    Have a laugh and read my post "The lady who cried too much salt" !!!! :cry:
     
    Last edited: Oct 8, 2005
  8. mrplowdude

    mrplowdude Senior Member
    Messages: 315

    when you pretreat it won't allow the snow to bond to the pavement allowing you to easily clean the snow right down to pavement. It will save you time and money. You can charge more for a better service. payup
     
  9. M-Pact Snow

    M-Pact Snow Junior Member
    Messages: 27

    With all the other great responses, one more thing stands is that while you will be more efficient using the treated salt you will be spending less time on that lot and you will be able to pick up one or mabey two more accounts, resulting in a much more profitable situation.
     
  10. SnowGuy73

    SnowGuy73 PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 24,868

    As of today...I never have noticed a difference.
     
  11. Andy N.

    Andy N. Senior Member
    Messages: 236

    You guys still are not answering my question. Well, you kind of are. Here is my point. You can charge an extra 15%? extra for magic salt and have it work a little bit longer than rock salt, OR you could go back and salt again and get 100% more for a full salting trip. You could do sidewalks for the same $$ amount extra for magic salt, OR, you could get a 100% paid trip to clear and retreat the sidewalks. It just seems silly to me to be paying more for a product that the customer won't really appreciate OR understand than to be doing what ALL of my competition is doing and salting their accounts sometimes three times in a normal business day. No one in my area has even heard of magic salt. I have talked to reps of Magic on the phone wanting me to be a dealer for my area - I don't get it. If I'm going to get out of bed, I might as make as much money as possible. I am by no means saying that I gouge my customers, but I do what is necessary to keep their property clear and melted.

    As far as this theory that rock salt does not melt after xyz degrees, I am fully aware of that, but in all of my experience, rock salt still melts w/ temps in the teens, it just takes longer.

    For those of you who have tried magic and can find no difference in it, are you mixing it properly, I'm sure you are, it can't be that hard. Surely someone here uses it and can tell me WHY you are using it.

    Mick, I understand where you are coming from but in my area, no one does a seasonal contract, its taboo.
     
    Last edited: Oct 10, 2005
  12. SnowGuy73

    SnowGuy73 PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 24,868

    There is no point to use it if you charge per application. :rolleyes:
     
  13. Andy N.

    Andy N. Senior Member
    Messages: 236

    Alrighty then. Thank you.
     
  14. pbeering

    pbeering Senior Member
    Messages: 266

    You charge a premium for treated salt. We spend a little energy and educate the cutomers about the value to them: less damage, better results, no dead grass, no sliding through the intersections, no runoff contamination into their detention ponds, no EPA or other issues. Time is money. You are selling the outcome, not the how.

    We also sell the stuff to our customers, another profit center.

    Try it, you might just like it.
     
  15. pbeering

    pbeering Senior Member
    Messages: 266

    Andy, I sent you a private message on this subject.
     
  16. Mark Oomkes

    Mark Oomkes PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 10,853

    Andy, how are you charging for your applications? Per Ton? Per application, i.e., $50\application? This will make a big difference in answering your question.
     
  17. Big Dog D

    Big Dog D PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,134


    I don't use MS I use regular salt cut just 20% with sand. I drive by an account that uses MS in the course of my route and the only thing I have seen as an advantage is that on the cold storms (25 +/- degrees F) that the MS started to melt faster than mine.
     
  18. Andy N.

    Andy N. Senior Member
    Messages: 236

    Mark,
    Per application. Thats why I understand that it is kind of pointless for me to use magic.
     
  19. Mark Oomkes

    Mark Oomkes PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 10,853

    That's easy then. Once you get the 'hang' of Magic Salt over untreated salt, you will start using less material, thereby making more profit. One of the benefits of treated salt is that you can reduce the amount applied by 25-30%, some say up to 50%. Plus you will get better results quicker and at lower temps.
     
  20. LwnmwrMan22

    LwnmwrMan22 PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 27,964

    What's Magic Salt made of??

    How is it any different from other "salts" that will melt down to -25 degrees?