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What Went Wrong? (If Anything)

Discussion in 'Ice Management' started by KFX450RXC, Feb 18, 2015.

  1. KFX450RXC

    KFX450RXC Member
    Messages: 39

    Down here, most people use Primera Turf Quad Release: http://www.primeraturf.coop/products/ice_melters

    In anticipation for this week's snow, sleet, freezing rain forecast, I went out as usual pre-treating all my properties and I even went rather heavy because they were calling for as much as .5 - 1 inch possible of sleet and freezing rain. We started at 8:30 Monday morning and finished up around 1:30 Tuesday morning. I was tired but feeling pretty good about the preparations we had made.

    Tuesday morning, I go take a look and it was sad. Most of the lots looked as if nobody had been there. We got a lot of sleet and freezing rain but I really thought the ice melt would have done a better job. Temperatures that night got down to the low 20s I think.

    I went back and hooked up the plow and started. We worked until midnight last night and are headed out again right now. The sun is helping and I did notice yesterday in the sunnier places, many places were slushy underneath the hard layer of ice. It wasn't too hard to break the plow through that and get right to the asphalt. But in the colder, shadier places, it was still rather hard.

    We're going to do all we can today and then we're probably done. Tonight's low around 10. Tomorrow's high around 17. Tomorrow night around 3. It never gets above 25 until Saturday when its supposed to reach the upper 30s. So I'm sure whatever is out there after today will be staying until at least this weekend.

    Is there anything I could have done differently? This may just be the way it is. But I was really disappointed with how little the ice melt had done in preventing accumulation. Maybe some washed out before things got really cold but I put so much down, I thought we'd be good.
    Last edited: Feb 18, 2015
  2. derekslawncare

    derekslawncare PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,003

    Well, depending on the storm, it may have been "timing" on your part. How did the storm start out, IE: rain changing to snow, rain to freezing rain to sleet then finished with snow? Unlike the DOT's who have thousands of miles to do, I have 9 commercial, all ranging from 5k-75k sqft lots and all within about 20 miles of each other. So, I try to time my pretreat apps for right AFTER the storm changes to sleet or right after the snow starts to accumulate. This way, if the storm is rain for the first hour or so and then changes, my app is laid down right when needed and doesn't wash off.

    Depending on your timing and how well your lots drain, 1/2 or more of your pretreat app may have been washed away before it ever had a chance to work. Ideally, IMO, you want your app to go down as late as possible into the storm, but still be under any frozen precipitation. Also, are you using straight salt or treated? If the temps are forecasted to be 15 or colder, I prewet with Liq Mag Chloride so I get better melting at the colder temps.
  3. Mike NY

    Mike NY Senior Member
    from zone 5
    Messages: 102

    It Probably helped to keep the ice from bonding to the pavement and aided in scraping the ice and sleet up. Also most likely got diluted because of too much water content in your precipitation. Do your lots look any better than non-treated? Cleanup any easier? Less material applied post storm to get the results required?
  4. SnowMatt13

    SnowMatt13 PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,527

    Salt should never be used to burn off snow or expected to melt accumulations. It is to prevent the bond from forming to the pavement. If you're doing anything more than that you are wasting time and money
  5. WilliamOak

    WilliamOak PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,986

    Cutting edge wear much cheaper than wasted salt from a heavy application
  6. ReddensLawnCare

    ReddensLawnCare Member
    Messages: 30

    We haWed the same issue. We went out at 4 am to start plowing and the blade could not get under the ice. We ending salting everything again heavy and let it sit for 1 hour until the bond was broken underneath the ice. Then it would peel up easily
  7. Antlerart06

    Antlerart06 PlowSite Veteran
    Messages: 3,437

    I agree

    I found out Ice Melt breaks down to fast if there is any rain in the storm.
    I notice Road Salt will last longer in the rain.
    Plus in that type of a storm I'm running around checking and waiting for the change over to sleet and if starts building up. I will clean sleet off about the time it changes over to snow.
  8. ReddensLawnCare

    ReddensLawnCare Member
    Messages: 30

    I used rock salt and salted with the storm and had the same results
  9. lowflyn

    lowflyn Junior Member
    Messages: 8

    We had the same issue here in Memphis. It started Sunday night around 10PM as rain and changed to freezing rain and sleet around 11PM. Kept going until 7PM Monday when it finally get off. I was able to push several lots during the daytime Tuesday but it began freezing solid around 7PM Tues. I stayed on them until 4AM Wed but all I was doing was wasting time. I don't think any sort of pre-treat will keep freezing rain and sleet from turning solid in single digit temperatures.
  10. KFX450RXC

    KFX450RXC Member
    Messages: 39

    Unfortunately, it sounds like I wasn't alone here. SnowMatt makes a good point. The plow was breaking though rather well in the sunnier areas Tuesday (storm came in Monday night) and most of those areas were hard on top but slush underneath. But as lowflyn said, it would get so hard late at night, I just had to quit. By midnight that night, it was getting to the low teens and I couldn't break through the ice with a jack hammer.
  11. xtreem3d

    xtreem3d PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,547

    Same thing here..just too much sleet/rain combo to hold it off.
  12. lowflyn

    lowflyn Junior Member
    Messages: 8

    Another round for Memphis tonight. Starting as rain and hopefully transitioning straight to snow. Getting rest now for another long night.
  13. KFX450RXC

    KFX450RXC Member
    Messages: 39

    Just raining here for this one. By the time the colder air arrives, the majority of the precipitation will be further south.

    Stay safe.
  14. KFX450RXC

    KFX450RXC Member
    Messages: 39

    Never mind my prior post. We had one sneak up on us today. All my lots were salted today and the plows go out tomorrow. Its snowing like crazy right now and some areas could see as much as 10". For NC, that's a huge deal. :waving:
  15. lowflyn

    lowflyn Junior Member
    Messages: 8

    You're getting what came through here earlier. Memphis was spared, 2" at my house but concrete was warm enough it never stuck. 100 miles south of me in MS is 6-10". Might be heading that way tomorrow to help clear. Most of them have never seen a plow.
  16. ReddensLawnCare

    ReddensLawnCare Member
    Messages: 30

    Where in Nc are you. We are in Concord and have about 2-3" already. Maybe an inch on the roads
  17. KFX450RXC

    KFX450RXC Member
    Messages: 39

    Raleigh area. We're waiting until it stops. Hopefully around sun up. Plenty of snow with some sleet mixed in. We're right on the freeze line. I can see some of our northern areas getting several inches. Some southern areas we service may only get rain or maybe an inch of snow. We'll have to wait and see.

    Fortunately, it was hyped enough on TV that most everything is closed Thursday.

    lowflyn. That's crazy. MS getting 6-10". I bet they don't know what to do.
  18. ReddensLawnCare

    ReddensLawnCare Member
    Messages: 30

    It was a bust here. What are y'all seeing
  19. KFX450RXC

    KFX450RXC Member
    Messages: 39

    Wake Co. (Raleigh area) has a few inches of mostly wet snow / sleet mix. DOT says its plowing easy. Looks like the trailing edge of the storm should pass within the hour, then we're headed out. Fortunately for this area, folks panic at an inch so we get paid to do what we do today.

    30-45 minutes south of here got predominantly rain. I have accounts completely snowed in and some probably just wet.