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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi Folks, looking for some advice. I have a driveway thats about 1k' long and is almost a 45deg slope in spots, with a big turn in the middle located in New Hampshire. Yes plowing this is a challenge. We have been treating the drive up to this year with a sand / salt mix. Over the summer it was re-paved due to a collapse so now its nice and flat at least. The paving contractor (who also plows commercial lots) suggested we switch to strait salt instead of the mix since they have had had better luck with it, use less material, and less cleanup in the spring.

However I have some concerns. First is the traction aspect, will salt assist with this as well as the sand ? Given the steepness this is critical (we had several vehicles go off the road last year). Also adding a Meyer 750S tailgate sander to my plow truck to have material right there as I'm clearing (just used a fertilizer spreader on my tractor last year). The second is the impact of the strait salt on the property. There is a well at the top of the property, and we have grass planted along the sides for erosion control I definitely don't want to kill all of it.(doesn't need to be pretty erosion control is its only purpose).

Anyway given all that if anyone has some experience they are willing to share, I'd love to hear it.
Thanks in advance!
 

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I’m just a personal plower, but my paved driveway is 600’ (generally a gentle slope towards the road) and a 2,000 sf turnaround in front of the garage that doesn’t get much sun on it. I’m in lake effect country.

My personal observations are

(a) the salt I use hasn’t done much in terms of killing the grass, do I wouldn’t worry about that, and

(b) the salt will be effective only until it’s melted (obviously). If there’s slush/wetness still there, it will freeze back up overnight and be slick again. If you use rock salt, you’ll have some rock fragments to help with the traction if it refreezes.

Based on your description, my guess is that you’re going to need to use a mixture still.


I didn’t put a top coat on my driveway; left it with just the binder coat so that it would have some roughness to it for traction.
 

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If you preemptively salt, traction won’t be to much of a issue, it becomes a problem when the snow starts forming a bond with the pavement, a little goes a long way.
 

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1km long w slopes, i would use pickled sand.
Driveways tend not to be 0 tolerance. They allow a little build up, salt will refreeze overnight if you dont have a good drying sunny day. Sand will add grit and if not melted down to the pavement will make the hardpack driveable to most. I would also suggest biting off a v boxspreader. Little more money but saves you a ton of handling on a long driveway.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thanks guys. All the input was very appreciated. Actually considering starting out with bagged salt and still getting our usual sand/salt mix order (9 tons) so we could switch mid year if traction is an issue.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Thought I'd post an update on this. Been using strait salt since 2019 with great results. Storage is the only challenge. Also upgraded the truck and plow to a Fisher XLS to keep me more on the road. I'm one of the only driveways that's bare pavement in the winter.
 
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