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Help Me Understand Salt/Sand Measurements

Discussion in 'Ice Management' started by XJ1517, Dec 4, 2015.

  1. XJ1517

    XJ1517 Junior Member
    Messages: 20

    One of my new clients requested that I do salting. It's a 0.5 mile laneway with about a dozen houses off of it (dirt road). They'll need it sanded about 4/5 times per year. I figure it's a good excuse for me to finally get a sander and maybe offer the service to my other clients.

    I picked up a larger tailgate spreader to do the job. I tested it out with regular sand and it worked great.

    I got a quote from a local sand/gravel company.

    "Our price for Pickled Sand is $50.00 per yard plus taxes and delivery, with a minimum charge of $50.00. Delivery is via a triaxle truck, which can hold approx. 25 yards of pickled sand. Therefore, it would be dumped directly from the box of the triaxle truck. Delivery prices vary depending upon the location of delivery, with the majority of the area at a delivery price of $90.00"

    How much does one yard typically yield? Is there any sort of formula or rule of thumb for this?

  2. xtreem3d

    xtreem3d PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,548

  3. derekslawncare

    derekslawncare PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,003

    Not sure what "pickled sand" is as I use straight rock salt on all my accounts. I would assume that it is what we call salt/sand mix here, either 50/50 or 60/40 blend of the two? Anyways, a 1yd bucket (level fill) of straight salt is roughly 1 ton of salt, so I would assume a mix of salt and sand is roughly the same weight, although again, I don't do sand, so you might want to ask your vendor who is selling it to you for clarification. But if my above figures are correct, then 1yd is 1 ton. MOST guys lay salt down at anywhere between 750-1000 lbs per acre, depending on numerous variables. Treated salt can be used at lessor amounts. Use the search box, many threads previously on how much to use. Hope this helps.

    Edit: You might want to start out buying bagged salt by the pallet. Although price wise, it will be a little more expensive than buying in bulk, it will be MUCH easier to handle in the bed of your truck and much easier to load into the spreader. Then, if you grow your sales of this service and find that you have more customers wanting it, then you can graduate to a v-box and bulk. Just know that that comes with a whole slew of its additional requirements, where to store, keeping it dry while stored and how to load from pile to truck.
    Last edited: Dec 4, 2015
  4. Philbilly2

    Philbilly2 PlowSite Veteran
    Messages: 3,514

    Does salt work on a non paved surface?
  5. derekslawncare

    derekslawncare PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,003

    I don't know why it wouldn't other than you may have to apply a little heavier or more often depending on how crowned or soft the road is due to run off. Maybe one of the guys on here that plows dirt can chime in.
  6. Freshwater

    Freshwater PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,056

    A yard of salt weighs 2500lbs not 1 ton. Wet salt can weigh closer to 3k.
  7. JD Dave

    JD Dave PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 11,115

    Sand is much better then salt on gravel. It just roughs up the surface to make it not slippery and still allows you to plow it without gouging in all the time. Plowing a salted gravel lot the next time when its been salted is a complete mess. For our shop yard I go buy sand when needed and I have 300 ton of salt generally on hand.
  8. SnoFarmer

    SnoFarmer PlowSite Fanatic
    from N,E. MN
    Messages: 9,852

    We dont use ice melt of any kind on gravel,
    just sand/cinders/ clinkers.

    As mentioned it makes soft spots and mud.
  9. derekslawncare

    derekslawncare PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,003

    All I know is that when I used to buy from a competitor, when they loaded me with their skid with the "big bucket" (1yd), they charged me the one ton rate per bucket loaded. Now when I say level bucket, I mean they would drive into the pile curl and raise bucket about 18-24 inches off the ground so that sides were level and then shake bucket so that anything above top edge would spill out, then load what was left. They considered that 1yd/1ton of salt. Obviously, if you are loading "heaped" buckets, that is more.
  10. derekslawncare

    derekslawncare PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,003

    Glad a few of you that do gravel chimed in.
  11. leigh

    leigh 2000 Club Member
    from CT
    Messages: 2,299

    A yard of sand weighs 2750 lbs.A dry yard of bulk salt weighs 2000lbs. I salt one gravel lot with so-so results. A common mix is a 6-1 mix of sand to salt.Havent used in years but would custom mix it depending upon temps.I would spread it about 1/3 more than I now spread salt. Works well,leaves a mess in spring on paved lots. You're looking to cover a little over an acre so maybe figure a ton on the high side.
    Last edited: Dec 4, 2015
  12. SnoFarmer

    SnoFarmer PlowSite Fanatic
    from N,E. MN
    Messages: 9,852

    Salt on gravel....
    The salt burns a hole threw the snow.
    Does littel to melt the snow or ice.
    Unlike pavement where the brine breaks the bond the snow and ice has with the pavement it soaks in to the gravel.
    This loosens up the gravel causing a mess,even in the dead of winter.

    Plow Early don't let the snow set or get driven on and raise/remove the shoes , after the ground has frozen .
    Last edited: Dec 4, 2015
  13. Freshwater

    Freshwater PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,056

    Sorry read the wrong line in my book. Read for dirt.
    Salt is 2025- 2160 per cubic yard. Based on 75-80 per cubic foot. Depending on moisture.
  14. Lone Wolf Ent

    Lone Wolf Ent Junior Member
    Messages: 10

    We figure a yard of salt averages 2000 lbs. We do a school bus lot that is mostly gravel. For that lot I mix 1 yard of salt with 4 buckets (10,000lbs) of sand. Gives a 10 to 1 ratio that will not freeze easily and makes the ice porous and the sand is instant traction.
  15. Philbilly2

    Philbilly2 PlowSite Veteran
    Messages: 3,514

    Bingo - Thumbs Up
  16. lfaulstick

    lfaulstick Senior Member
    from PA
    Messages: 128

    we do alot of gravel roads/driveways we never use salt, as stated before makes a Huge mess especially when spring thaw comes seems to take base right out of road.

    we use straight sand, cinders, peagravel, or peagravel/sand mix...it is a pain pile always freezes if job is to far away it freezes in spreader.

    It is nice though when it gets well below freezing you can spread it out and keep busting it up and it kind of freeze dries the moisture out and it wont freeze as bad in spreader going down the road.

    years ago used to do alot of access road, and they wanted limestone chips and we used to use window washer fluid in sprayer and load spreader in small amounts and spray every layer to help from freezing up..worked well, but a gallon didnt go very far.
  17. XJ1517

    XJ1517 Junior Member
    Messages: 20

    Wow. Alot of great info! I do alot of residential driveways that are paved, but my clients who have laneways/roadways which are gravel, it seems I'll be better off to sand them.

    "Pickled Sand" as they call it here is a sand/salt mix. I may just ask them for a load of sand. Is there a certain type I ask for? Fine? Coarse?

    Thanks again!
  18. Snow tracker

    Snow tracker Senior Member
    Messages: 136

    Coarse sand works best for traction. We mix a small amount of rock salt or calcium chloride into the sand to keep it from freezing. Sand will hold water and freeze hard without it. The little bit of salt does not mess up the gravel like using all salt on gravel.
  19. XJ1517

    XJ1517 Junior Member
    Messages: 20

    So I googled Pickled sand and this is what it said:

    "Pickled sand is a homogenous mixture of abrasive sand and sodium chloride (NaCl) at a salt concentration of about 8%."

    Think this will be good for my gravel road clients? Doesn't look like its a high concentration of salt.
  20. Philbilly2

    Philbilly2 PlowSite Veteran
    Messages: 3,514

    Previous Responses:

    Pretty sure everyone has clarified what to use.