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Making brine/liquid deicer

Discussion in 'Ice Management' started by CRZYMOW, Dec 5, 2009.

  1. CRZYMOW

    CRZYMOW Junior Member
    from NW PA
    Messages: 5

    What type of salt are you using when making your own brine? I'm just getting into this and as of now I only have a few small accounts. I don't know anyone in the area selling brine so I thought I'd make it myself if possible. I know we use to fill our tractor tires with brine we made using Calcium Choride. Any help would be appreiciated...Thank...Tom
     
  2. Kubota 8540

    Kubota 8540 PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,946

    Because most of the bulk salt has so many impurities, I use bagged Solar Salt . 2.3 pounds per gallon. This year I have a new setup which I'm going to try tomorrow. The first batch will be made using bagged solar salt. The second batch will be made from the new state certified bulk salt I purchased last week. In appearance in looks clean, so I'm going to try it. It would be a lot less expensive if the bulk works out. I make about 350 gallons per batch.
     
  3. Mike S

    Mike S PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,588

    Solar salt thats some clean salt thats a good idea. I use bulk and it works good but there is dirt in that stuff.
     
  4. Kubota 8540

    Kubota 8540 PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,946

    I think the bags says its like 99.8 or 98.9 % pure? Compared to most bulk salt which I think I seen a number like 90-92 % . That can be a lot of dirt ,sand or ? When I make my brine using solar salt there is very little filtering needed to use in my sprayer.
     
  5. CRZYMOW

    CRZYMOW Junior Member
    from NW PA
    Messages: 5

    Isn't solar salt Sodium Choloride? Wouldn't you want to use Calcium Chlorie?
     
  6. Kubota 8540

    Kubota 8540 PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,946

    It doesn't seem necessary to make calcium chloride brine since you can readily purchase liquid calcium chloride. Calcium chloride solids, such as flake and pellets are made from liquid calcium chloride. From the way I read it the liquid is evaporated to make flake and pellets which is a $$$ process. Salt is sodium chloride or NaCl. Salt is salt, there is just different degrees of refining or purity. Table salt can be made into a salt brine by adding water, even though its pricey, it will melt snow and ice. Solar salt is generally used in water softener systems, when used as a de-icer it works great because of its purity meaning theres less junk, grit, and mud left in the brine tank. That last description may have been a little extreme, but take bulk de-icing salt and put into a bucket and add water, stir it and let the salt dissolve. Chances are the water will not be clear, it will look dirty, why? Because it is not as pure as other grades of salt. The only reason I can see for making calcium chloride brine from solids would be that you only need a small quantity. Buying liquid calcium chloride bulk would be far cheaper.
     
  7. CRZYMOW

    CRZYMOW Junior Member
    from NW PA
    Messages: 5

    Calcium Choride works at lower tempt by what I saw on the chart from the Iowa DOT.
     
  8. forestfireguy

    forestfireguy PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,275

    Yes it works at lower temps, but it's otherwise similar, and like he said, making back into liquid is kind of reverse engineering.........
     
  9. Kubota 8540

    Kubota 8540 PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,946

    Check out the WINTER LIQUIDS post its very informative as far as all liquids.
     
  10. flyweed

    flyweed Junior Member
    Messages: 15

    Hey guys....I am not a commercial plower..just do my own 200ft driveway with a 15 degree incline. It gets to be a real "B1tch" when I get some ice or packed snow. I have been looking for something to both pretreat before a snowstorm and also put on after it snows or ices. I have been reading alot about liquid deicers. I think I am going to do a mix that I got off the Dow website that contained water, calcium chloride and glycol. I bought a 20 gallon barrel and am going to put a large fish tank heater in the bottom and a couple saltwater fishtank pumps to "swirl" the liquid to help keep it mixed. Plus I don't want it hot, but just warm..so when I spray it'll be a warm liquid going on. I'll either use my pull behind 30 gallon atv sprayer, or I have a backpack sprayer too that I could use.

    Do you guys think this will work, and this simple homemade brine maker will work??? I have a salter water fish tank at home, so I have a salinity hydrometer to test my liquid with to hit a specific gravity. What amount of Calcium CHloride should I mix with the water and what should I shoot for as far as a specific gravity?

    Thanks for any help.
    Dan
     
  11. Kubota 8540

    Kubota 8540 PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,946

    I know brewing your own brine will work. I did another batch yesterday, sprayed it today. 350 gallons. Salt, water, and calcium chloride, worked good at 90% salt brine and 10% calcium chloride, temperature was 25 degrees. I don't know for sure about the heater or spraying warm. 60 degree water is ideal to get the right amount of salt saturated into. 2.3 pounds salt per gallon.I don't like the sound of the GLYCOL to mix in? Don't think its needed or a good idea. If you cant get enough turbulence in the water in the barrel you can use a submersible sump pump. I used a 3/4 hp in a 250 gallon container last year and made 150 gallons at a time. This year I moved up to a 2" pump in (2) 250 gallon containers. Salt in the first container recirculating water from the second container. It took 20 minutes once the pump was started. You need to test the salt water to make sure it has the right saturation of salt to be optimum, then add in the calcium chloride.
     
  12. Kubota 8540

    Kubota 8540 PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,946

    Specific gravity for the salt water should be 1.176
    90% Salt water to 10% calcium chloride
     
  13. flyweed

    flyweed Junior Member
    Messages: 15

    so you need to make saltwater FIRST, before you add calcium chloride? I thought you could just mix calcium chloride into plain water. Like the dow site says, to make a liquid de-icer thats good down to -45F t would be 28% CaCl2 for 100 gallons. Or 10.6 lbs of Calcium Chloride to 86 gallons of water...specific gravity should be 1.275 freezepoint -46F

    Is this not correct??? Again, I am just starting to do this, so I want to do it right.

    Dan
     
  14. flyweed

    flyweed Junior Member
    Messages: 15

    one more question...i know making liquid CaCl2 is redundant, as it normally comes in liquid form....I didn't know that, I just saw bags of it locally in flake form. Where can I get lidquid Calcium Chloride? Should I order it over the internet, or look somewhere locally?? any input would be great.

    Dan
     
  15. Kubota 8540

    Kubota 8540 PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,946

    Sounds OK to me, most newcomers to liquid don't fully understand as much as you seem to. Especially when it comes to saturation % or a hydrometer or a salimeter reading. I am only using 10% add of calcium chloride since the temps are not that low yet. I try to maximize my profits. No need for a brew that will melt to -45 if it is +25 on the pavement. I see that as driving a nail with a sledge hammer. Will it work? Yes. Is it necessary? No.
    As far as buying LCC over the internet, I dont think it would be worth it, If you are only making small batches. Its a lot easier with the liquid LCC, just pour or pump in the number of gallons to get the right percentage. If you can find it in small quantities locally that would be good.
     
  16. flyweed

    flyweed Junior Member
    Messages: 15

    THanks kubota...I appreciate all of your input. Yeah, I certainly dont need to mass produce the stuff like you guys need to...like I said, I just need it to keep my own driveway and sidewalk clear. I'll see if I can find LCC locally...otherwise I'll have to buy the flake and make my own brine then water it down as necessary. Yeah, I do have a good amount of water chemistry knowledge and salinity in general. I have a 200 gallon saltwater fish tank that is pristine, but it takes exacting water conditions and likewise with salinity. So mixing salt solutions is a no brainer for me.

    Dan
     
  17. Kubota 8540

    Kubota 8540 PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,946

    On the other hand we really dont like people to do this themselves, it takes another job away! LOL
     
  18. flyweed

    flyweed Junior Member
    Messages: 15

    LOL..yeah I suppose. But......where i live NO ONE uses liquid mix..not even the street or highway depts. I don't know why, it's just not popular around here, they all use salt rock/sand mixes and that's it. So I may be the first guy in this area to use a liquid. Well and my brother said if it works he'll use it too!! ha ha ha
    Dan
     
  19. magnatrac

    magnatrac PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,055

    If you only need a small batch of liquid calcium it's easy to make. You don't need to heat it there will be plenty of heat as soon as you start mixing it !!! If you have a 20 gallon bucket you can just add pelladow of flake to water and mix it. I make my own for pre wetting my salt. I use my hard/broken bags of chloride for mixing. You can get 20 gallons out of a 50lb, bag of pelladow. I have no real way of measuring my concentration other than weight. My mix weighs in at 11lbs. per gallon +or- a couple ounces. I don't remember where I read it but 11 lbs per gallon was the target weight for a 30% concentration. I am sure I read that somewhere on this site . I hope this is a little help it is really simple to mix a small amount. If your paying retail for a bag of chloride your going have about .75 cents a gallon plus your time to make the mix. I don't know if what I am doing is the best way but it is easy and it's working great for me !!! ( it also works great for dust control !!! )

    Good luck ,shaun
     
  20. deicepro

    deicepro PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,124

    Actually, Cacl2 is made from sodium carbonate and limestone through the Solvay process