When & Why You Should Use Liquid Deicer

Rock salt will always be a staple in snow removal. It’s the tried and true method that everyone knows is dependable. However, there are other methods for removing ice and snow that are worth investing in. After all, you pride your snow removal business as both innovative and dependable—so why not look toward a multi-faceted approach to removal? Having a diverse snow removal regimen will make you a versatile business—and clients will take notice.

Liquid Deicer Is A Versatile Tool

Have you considered investing in liquid deicers to complement your supply of rock salt? And what is liquid deicer, anyway? In essence, it’s a liquid salt solution that has a broader set of uses in snow removal than just plain rock salt. While it’s not in widespread use as a go-to product in snow removal, it’s quickly becoming one. And there are several reasons to add it to your arsenal before you’re left in the dust (or snow flurries) by other, more innovative businesses in your region.

Liquid Deicer Is An Environmentally Conscious Product

Because of its liquid state, salt brines are easier to control in their application. Because you’re covering a more precise area, you’re wasting less salt and are thus contaminating less ground with sodium chloride. Liquid deicer is not a compound that is fundamentally more safe than rock salt (or less corrosive), but you tend to use less of it and use it only where needed.

Liquid Deicer Spray Sticks To Surfaces

The salt crystals that constitute a deicing solution are smaller and mixed with a liquid. When applied to the surface of a road, the solution doesn’t scatter and bounce around like salt crystals do—it adheres to wherever it’s applied. This makes liquid deicing agents more effective by virtue of their ability to stay where they’re applied, prolonging their usefulness.

Liquid Deicers Are Multipurpose

While it’s not as effective as rock salt at melting existing ice, it will work its magic after some time. However, a liquid deicing agent is best used as a proactive approach to snow removal. It can be applied before ice forms, which will mitigate ice formation before it even forms. This versatility can help your snow removal strategy by broadening your snow removal window, especially if you use it in conjunction with regular rock salt. 

Balance is Important

It’s important to find a balanced snow removal strategy. There is no “magic bullet” approach to snow removal. It takes careful planning and using your experience and intuition to develop a method for snow removal that can be both proactive and reactive. Liquid deicer spray is great, but it can’t do it all for you. They have some drawbacks that you need to consider.

Liquid Deicers Are Most Effective Before the Storm

You don’t want to go to a client after a big ice storm with nothing but liquid deicer on your truck. Deicers are best used before ice forms, as they function best as an anti-icing agent (contrary to their name). While liquid brines do melt snow and ice, they do it at a much slower rate than regular rock salt.

Liquid Dicers Cost More

The upfront cost of liquid deicing agents is higher than bulk rock salt. However, because of their liquid nature, they are far more potent and take up less volumetric space. Because of this, the upfront cost is much higher but the cost of storage tends to be lower.

Liquid Deicers Require Skill

Rock salt is fairly easy to apply. Be it a shovel or a spreader hitched to a truck, rock salt’s application is as simple as throwing the salt onto the surface you’re removing ice and snow from. However, liquid deicers require more knowledge and experience in their application. You need to understand ground temperature, freeze tables, and consider the dilution of your product as ice and snow turn to water to ensure your solution will be effective and not just add more ice to your surface.

What Is Liquid Deicer Made Of?

Is liquid deicer salt? A lot of clients may ask you questions about liquid deicer ingredients. It’s best to have an informed answer ready. Luckily, there’s an easy answer to that question. Most common liquid deicers are simple sodium chloride brines. That means they are composed of a proportion of water and salt—the very same salt that goes into rock salt.

Liquid deicers work differently than rock salt, not due to their chemical composition, but due to the way they’re applied. They’re more precise and readily stick (and stay put) onto surfaces, making them a proactive solution to snow removal. Because the salt is diluted by water, they’re slower acting but more persistent than regular rock salt.

It’s Not a Matter of “Which” but of “When”

As an expert in snow removal and a business owner, you shouldn’t be asking yourself the “which” question when deciding on if you should use liquid deicer or rock salt. Instead, you should be asking “when”. The truth is, both are vital components to a versatile snow removal company. If you only invest in one or the other, you’ll quickly find that you’re unable to properly react fast enough to your customers’ needs.

Every step of snow removal is important to you. So being proactive is just as important as the follow-up. With that in mind, a strategic approach to snow removal that begins with a liquid deicer and continues with rock salt will win your clients over and keep them coming back to you season after season.

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AG Excavating, Inc
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