bulk salt?

currently we use tailgate spreaders to dispense salt. the price incurred is getting more and more difficult to willingly pass onto the clients.. what are some ways of storing bulk salt? do you have to build a siloh? we currently buy 80# salt delivered by trailer 30 bags to a pallet, 20 pallets a semi. I aw aware of the costs of insert spreaders, but the info i realy need is cost of storage, ie building a storage facility.. We dont want to store the salt in the same warehouse as the equipment..also, i was told this years price for bulk salt is 3 times higher than it was last year. any and all info would be greatly appreciated.
thank you, kevin hall

Mike Nelson

Senior Member
Naperville IL
I heard of some guys storing it in a 20 or 40 foot shipping container.They leave them at their different locations.I also agree with you about storing it in the same garage as your equipment.
Good Luck


Senior Member
Chicago, IL.
Do you have outdoor land available for a bin of some kind?

We built a 20 x 30' salt bin out of pre cast concrete 2 x 2 x 4' and 2 x 2 x 8' blocks. We went 3 courses tall (6') and a "Cover all'' canopy over the top!

The cover and block system made sense to my operation due to the fact we rent our yard space, and I wanted a way to remove and either re-build at new yard or sell out right!

One thing I would watch for is rain water run-off!

Make sure your salt is sitting on a high pitch paved area to avoid heavy concentrations of salt water flowing through and killing plant material in its path. We lost a few small trees due to our bin having a natural tendency to pitch rain run-off "in to" our salt bin and through the back side. Since then we fixed the problem!

Also the height of my bin is fine for a Bobcat 773 (as an example) my cover all roof sits about 10' above my concrete blocks - gives me plenty of clearance for Bobcat lift arms.



PlowSite.com Veteran
when i changed over to bulk salt my biggest hurdle was a way to load it....at the time i did not own a skid steer.......now we as mentioned above use concrete blocks and cover it with a tarp....moving the tarp on and off is time consuming so that will change in the future as well.....after the change over i was so suprised at how lomg i stayed with the bagged(as i see contractors still using now).........now i can make more money and at the same time give better coverage........before i was always hesitant to spread that extra bag, costing me 3,4,5 bucks.....now that same amount costs me soooooo much less..........once you get by the initial set up costs you will rarely use bagged product.....it does have its place, in most operations but as a sideline or as an emergency stash.........my bulk salt did not really go up as much as the hype this year, maybe 5 bucks a ton , no more a rise than the bagged material


Junior Member
Dayton. OH
I think now is the perfect time for you to consider Ice Ban.
It was about the time that we had to replace and/ or add to the salt spreading fleet that I decided to do some math about hopper spreaders. A steel spreader will cost you $3500.00 - $4000.00. It has a gas engine that you have to worry about starting in freezing temperatures and due to the corrosion of the salt will cost you another $500.00 +or- annually to maintain. On the other hand, you can purchase a sprayer to apply Ice Ban for $750.00 -$1200.00. It has a twelve volt pump that you simply control from the cab and will run regardless of temp. There is no maintenance because first of all, Ice Ban is not corrosive and will not rust up your truck or any of your customers' vehicles either and secondly the poly tank and rubber hoses aren'y effected like metal. When you look at those numbers it makes Ice Ban look pretty cheap doesn't it?


2000 Club Member
Irrigation I have just changed you name to Irritation.
We know what Ice Ban is, and why it is used. But telling someone that liquid application of Ice Ban is as easy as you say it is, is a falsehood and borders on deception. There are so many variables at play with liquid application. Also, liquids alone wont solve all decing issues, just as granuals alone wont solve them all. Stop shoving Ice Ban down the forums throat, there are many product that will do as well if not better than ice ban, for less or the same money.
Lets talk about some things you dont mention. Storage of the liquid at the shop. Transfere pump from the storage tank to the truck mounted tank. Price of Ice Ban its self per gallon. Lazer Temperature guns to check ground and pavement temps.
There is alot more to the equation than just a 150 gallon tank in a pick up and a 12v pump.
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Senior Member
Central Indiana
I agree that nothing should be pushed down anyones throat but I don't think it was pushed. He was mearly explaining in a way that other people who havent heard it 1000 times may understand the options. Ice ban isn't for everyone and does take time to figure out a set up that is right for each application.

I have no salt spreader. For me using a liquid makes sense.... I can use the sprayer in the summer in my lawncare biz. I built my whole setup on less than $1000 including a storage tank ($50). My transfer pump is the same pump as my sprayer..... I just Tee'd & Valved the input and I can bottom fill my tank with one pump. I didnt learn to use a salt spreader or salt formulas.... Im not changing my fleet over. My storage area is in my back yard. So I didnt want a bunker full of salt killing my yard.

To use the same example:
cost of precast concerete walls & metal roof
cost of spreader
cost of bobcat for loading

Ice Ban isn't perfect, neither am I, or my opinions...
Ice Ban isn't for everyone or every application... It may not work for me, but I went out on a limb and tried it this year.... If it doesnt work. I still can spray a yard or two this summer and I can pre treat my salt next year. Stay open minded,

Im trying a U-Edge next............:D


Junior Member
Dayton. OH
I'm sorry I'm so irritating, maybe I should be more negative and narrow minded. That is obviously not irritating. If you don't have anything good to say. . .


Western CT
It is silly for you to be spending $500 in maintenance on a gas motor. You can buy a new motor for that!.

Maintenace on my spreader motors consits of oil change, fuel filter, spark plug and air filter. Never have a problem starting them. If you have any experience with outdoor power equipment you will know the basics of keeping them running.

Plowking did not mention it but V-boxes can be had with electric motors now and those have very low maintenance. He and I both are running one and I can say I love it.


Senior Member
Philadelphia, PA
We rent (3) 40 foot storage containers that are dropped at each job site. Each container will hold apx. 35 tons plus room for the loader and cost $80 per month to rent. Skid steers are used to load the salt. Salt stays dry and secure.

All our Vees are gas powered and really don't have problems starting them in cold weather. Vees come gas, electric and hydraulic. Annual maintance for a gas powered vee is close to nothing. Just as long as you clean, grease bearings and oil the chains well before units go into storage. Hope this helps.


PlowSite.com Addict
Bulk salt storage on the cheap

When I decided to go from mix to straight salt and pre treatment I was faced with needing some way to store material and load it into a tailgate hopper relatively easily.

What I came up with was a closed truck body and a grain auger. Over the period of four years it has evolved into a more or less permanent installation. No electricity, so I have to make my own. Originally I ran the auger with a gas engine, but it was creaky at best and finally died completely and I replaced it with a generator and electric motor.

The final change was last year when we built a raised pad and a permanent cross bar and method of holding the auger up when it's being used for loading trucks. We can get the vee box under it easily and in a pinch cna load over the sideboards of our 5 yd dump.

To fill the bin the auger is taken down and hung from the roof of the bin. Back the truck up to the hopper and let the salt run out through the coal chutes as the auger runs it into the shed. We also treat the stockpile with Magic as it is being put in the bin.

More photos and descriptions will follow this post.

View attachment salt shed.jpg


PlowSite.com Addict
And now, Page 2

Loading the trucks is as easy as scraping the material down the pile, or across the floor, into this opening. The whole box is blocked high enough to fit a stock (and cheap) grain hopper underneath.

I like having gravity work for me any time I can arrange it. :)

View attachment floor cutout.jpg


PlowSite.com Addict
From outside, with a load ready to go. This small spreader loads in about 5 minutes, probably less time than it would take to dump 700 lbs out of bags. We can load the vee box with 1 1/4 ton in about 20 minutes. Granted, not as fast as a Bobcat or some other machine could do it, but not bad for relatively easy manual labor.

The bin holds 12 tons if you crowd it a little. That's two loads with our dump truck, each load takes about an hour to get inside.

Granted, it's crude as hell, but I've only got about $800 invested, not counting the generator, which gets used for other things as well. It's not pretty either, but it would be relatively easy to spruce it up a little. Where it sits now nobody cares what it looks like and I don't include it in the company tour.

View attachment from outside.jpg


PlowSite.com Addict

If there are any of the larger "chain" farm supply stores around you they can get the augers, these would be CT Farm & Country, Farm & Fleet or Tractor Supply.

On a long run, like 6 tons in one session, the auger will do about 200 lbs a minute, might be able to do more but it's hell if you overload it and stall the motor. Ask John Parker what happens when you overload an auger and have too much power available.

And yes, that's snow. Got 4 inches last Saturday and another 3 over Monday night. Then another inch last night which came on top of wet pavement and accompanied by falling temperatures, so it went to glaze pretty badly.


PlowSite.com Veteran
Western Michigan

I know you've done this for us in the past, but if you have any more pics of the setup it would sure help me visualize it.

I would really like to see if this makes sense for us.