salt effects on asphalt

A residential subdivision we plow has stated that they do not want salt services due to potential damage to their asphalt. I am not aware of any damage it causes, but before saying anything I thought I would check with the ones who would really know.
Any help here is appreciated.

John Allin Addict
Erie, PA
Salt won't damage the asphalt. However, they may be miss-understanding some of what they have seen in the past. If they are concerned about the color change on the asphalt (from black to white), they need to be educated that this is a result of overapplication of product.

Salt (sitting by itself) doesn't do anything. This is why you can store it in bulk. However, once moisture is introduced the salt goes into solution, forming salt brine. The brine breaks the bond between the snow/ice and the pavement surface. However, salt will only stay in solution up to 23% (by weight) of the liquid product. More salt than that and it begins to solidify and settle to the bottom, creating the 'white' appearance. The 'white material' is actually excess salt that has naturally settled out.

If you explain to them that you will not overapplicate (which is another discussion by itself), you should be able to asuage their fears as long as you explain the process.

john is exactly correct and also a concern they may have is that if the asphalt is in disrepair(many potholes and cracks) they may assume that this is from salt when its not.....but salting this type of uncared for lot may make it worse because the salt will possibly make more freeze thaw cycles and work the asphalt loose by ice forming on these uncared for areas

besides all the above if they dont want it dont do it but discussion with them would always be good

Kent Lawns Veteran
That's exactly right.

Unsealed or asphalt in disrepair could be damaged by salt by thawing the gravel underneath and making it more suseptable to movement with traffic and freeze/thaw cycles.

But, realistically, minimum maintenance parking lots generally don't get salted.

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