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Frozen salt/sand pile (with a twist)

Discussion in 'Ice Management' started by mvhauler, Dec 20, 2009.

  1. mvhauler

    mvhauler Senior Member
    Messages: 169

    The first few years I was spreading I used a 30-35% salt in sand mix. Stored in a poured wall concrete bin covered with a heavy truck tarp (black). No problems. Then I put up another bin (poured concrete) with a wood frame roof and sides covered with tin to hold the product. The mix froze so bad the loader bucket left tooth marks.

    So I went to straight sand with Dow 32% LCC turned into pile (at rate of 10 gal/ton). Worked very well. Sub-zero temps and it was like handling sand on the 4th of July.

    This year I decided to go with 60% salt/40%sand. Mixed them together and also flooded top of pile with same LCC at about 5-6 gal/ton just to be safe. First couple of storms was OK. Now that it got cold the edges and front of pile that didn't get a soaking are frozen ! Plus the heart of the pile stood stiff (think 6 ft. wall of sand), but would crumble/break up fine when using loader bucket. So yesterday I smashed the stuff up and sprayed it with LCC at about 10 gal/ton. Am thinking I should be good to go.

    Don't mind using the liquid, but don't understand why these different concentrations are freezing. Salt is always dry. Sand is pretty dry. Try to mix thoroughly. Have talked to DOT and the dealer I bought my sander from. No answers. Have used the search button and came up with Magic and washer fluid, but nothing like this. Any thoughts/ideas would be appreciated.
  2. kickin'a

    kickin'a Member
    from Iowa
    Messages: 58

    it's condensation that is getting in there and activating the salt and it turns it to rock, you can spray water on it to losen it up BUT you will need to use it right away with out it freezing .Probably not your best option, but it will help you use it up, My next shed will have infloor heat in it that will solve the condensation problems. JMO
  3. mvhauler

    mvhauler Senior Member
    Messages: 169

    Understand the condensation thing. Sand freezes, salt glues together. But when they are mixed together they should be OK, right? I have seen 10% salt in a sand pile that does better than this.
  4. Kubota 8540

    Kubota 8540 PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,949

    What kind of floor is in the bin? Mine is asphalt floor, standard framing lumber and sheeting, shingled roof. Never had a problem with salt sand mix, but mine is 70% salt / 30% sand? 12_08_09 252 (Custom).jpg

    Last year did straight sand & 8 gal / ton liquid calcium chloride no problems.

    12_08_09 252 (Custom).jpg
  5. mvhauler

    mvhauler Senior Member
    Messages: 169

    Concrete floor.
  6. Kubota 8540

    Kubota 8540 PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,949

    Sounds like moisture or water getting into the pile. I wonder if it could be not enough moisture? I would spray the pile with liquid calcium chloride and mix well, that would end that problem. Have not had any problems yet this year with mine here in Illinois and no liquid sprayed on it yet.