Should I use Salt or Sand to manage Ice?
When it comes to getting rid of ice and snow on walkways and driveways in the dead of winter, shoveling is usually the most popular option, but unfortunately, shoveling can actually be much more difficult than it may seem. While not only incredibly strenuous on the body, it is hard to manage ice and snow well with just shoveling alone. Thankfully, there are two less invasive options, that are much easier, and much more pleasant than shoveling. And, they include using salt or sand to manage ice.
Here are the pros and cons of using sand or salt to manage ice:
Salt - One of the most common options for removing ice and snow is rock salt, also known as the mineral form of table salt. While both plentiful and inexpensive, rock salt has several pros and cons that go along with it. The biggest benefit to rock salt is the fact that it lowers the temperature of water, meaning it is able to melt ice easily, and fairly quickly. But, the disadvantages include the fact that it is corrosive, which means it has a tendency to be harmful to many types of vegetation, it can also eat away at concrete and steel, and it is considered quite dangerous for pets to walk on, due to its chemical makeup.
Sand - Organic, natural, and completely harmless, people love using sand to manage ice on their driveways and walkways because it is the most eco-friendly option available, and offers great traction. Applying sand to ice and snow will not ruin vegetation, which means it can be used in and around bushes, plants, and all types of flowers, and it is not harmful for animals to walk on. Although beneficial in many ways, there are some disadvantages to using sand as well, including the fact that it has a tendency to sink in ice and snow, so it needs to constantly be reapplied, it tends to collect in drainage areas, and it does not melt ice like rock salt seemingly does.