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Salt or Sand or Mix?

Discussion in 'Ice Management' started by polarplowing, Jan 12, 2006.

  1. polarplowing

    polarplowing Member
    Messages: 59

    I am considering buying a salter/sander and was wondering if you guys use strictly salt? Strictly sand? or would a mix be best. I will primarily be spreading on medium traffic parking lots. Right now I have a lot of packed snow and ice covering the lot and the client and I would like to get it broken up. It is going to be a pain in the A:cry: to plow. Any suggestions would be great. Thanks
  2. cet

    cet PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 7,257

    If you are trying to break it up so you can plow it away then straight salt would be best. If you are going to salt it and leave it then a sand salt mix might be better because the sand will stay around and give you some better traction.

    How thick is the packed snow and ice? If it is only an inch or so and it is somewhere around freezing you can most likely get it out with straight salt.
  3. Mick

    Mick PlowSite.com Veteran
    from Maine
    Messages: 5,546

    Depends on the type of accounts you have. For asphalt or or finished surfaces, salt will be better. For gravel, salt/sand mix will be better. Salt is mixed with the sand mainly to keep it from clumping, although salt will also do some melting to give better traction.
  4. Big Dog D

    Big Dog D PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,134

    Best thing to do would be to take this golden opportunity to educate yourself and the client that if you salt early during a storm that you create a salt brine on the asphalt surface that will prevent the harpack from forming in the first place. They will most likely be very receptive to the idea of trying it and you will look like a hero!:blush2: :blush2: :blush2:
  5. mrplowdude

    mrplowdude Senior Member
    Messages: 315

    I use straight salt. On some places that there is a thick layer of ice and that doesn't see much sun I will toss down a 4-1 sand/salt mix.
  6. chris k

    chris k Senior Member
    Messages: 204

    Personally I believe that straight salt is the best thing. If you get ride if what is slippery than why is there a need for sand. But the problem is that people feel safe when they can see the sand. I have and apartment complex that wants the sand/salt mix put down just so that their tenants can see the sand.
  7. polarplowing

    polarplowing Member
    Messages: 59

    There is about 1 inch or so of packed ice and snow. So I think I will probably use just salt, to try to break it up. Thanks for all your help. Does anyone have any recommendations for a salter to be used on a GMC Suburban?? I like the Boss spreader because of the stand that it comes with (unhook from truck while loaded), but the price is really high for a spreader. Thanks again.