1. Welcome to PlowSite. Notice a fresh look and new features? It’s now easier to share photos and videos, find popular topics fast, and enjoy expanded user profiles. If you have any questions, click HELP at the top or bottom of any page, or send an email to help@plowsite.com. We welcome your feedback.

    Dismiss Notice

Salt and concrete demistified

Discussion in 'Ice Management' started by Grn Mtn, Dec 21, 2004.

  1. Grn Mtn

    Grn Mtn PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,644

    It cracks me up when people push the benefits of products other than straight salt for being safer on concrete. NOT TRUE. Listen the reason concrete cracks is this, Concrete is porous, Salt melts snow, Snow turns to water, Water seeps into the pores, Water eventually refreezes, Water expands, Expanded water(ice) cracks the concrete.

    The only thing to protect your concrete is to have it sealed....Hey can you say side business :rolleyes:
  2. ConcreteImpress

    ConcreteImpress Junior Member
    from NJ
    Messages: 1

    Would recommend sealer to any concrete prior to winter. Will be most helpful with deterioration of the surface. The only downfall is the deicer will not last long between storms.
    As for comparing salt to other products for concrete,,,,,, big difference. Salt reacts with portland which is used in concrete. Calcium is the best choice, still not great for it, but a much quicker chemical breakdown than salt. Salt especially over applied will cause the surface to flake and blister. It has a much slower chemical breakdown which means more reaction with the surface. Once the surface has broke down,, then the freeze/thaw principle comes into affect, making the problem worse.
    I have been placing concrete and stamped concrete for over 20 years. I actually have an article from 2001 that shows the molecular breakdown of salt,calcium, and a few other de-icers tested on concrete that was sealed and unsealed. The after affects were amazing. Bottom line there is not a good product for concrete. The sealer does reduce the severity of the problem.
    I will post the article after I scan it
  3. salt shaker

    salt shaker Member
    Messages: 65

    There are products out there that keep the freeze thaw cycles to a minimum. Which allows them to be SAFER to use on concrete.
  4. ptllandscapeIL

    ptllandscapeIL Senior Member
    Messages: 495

    i seal my drive every year,or have it sealed i have alot of friend that do concrete they roll the seal on my drive every year
  5. Norman B

    Norman B Junior Member
    Messages: 18

    You are alittle of the mark. you are right about freezing water cracking concrete but if to much salt sits on the concrete it will eat the top right off of it I have seen it happen many times
  6. Grn Mtn

    Grn Mtn PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,644

    A Little off the mark

    Okay, I admit I was making it a bit more black and white than it really is. And yes I do understand that the other Ice melt products are "better" for concrete. I was just Playing the role of the typical customer "Get Calcium Chloride because that won't hurt my concrete" then wonder why they still get cracks.