De-icers That Won’t Harm The Environment or Your Patio

De-icers come in many forms, each with their own positives and negatives. There is no shortage of options for the prevention or removal of ice and snow. A good shovel goes a long way, and for traction on slippery surfaces, you can use wood shavings, sand or kitty litter.

 

But in cold enough weather, you’ll need the help of a good de-icer. And chances are, if you’re on this page you’re looking for a safe choice. Although these options may sound strange, try to keep an open mind as they’re some of the cleanest de-icers available.

 

Sugar Beet Juice

 

Some areas have been using sugar beet juice on their roads to melt ice and snow. The sugar lowers the freezing point of ice and snow, and it’s harmless to people, animals, and plants.

The sugar in this juice can attract germs that are harmful to aquatic wildlife. Avoid using it near storm drains, where melted snow has a clear runoff path to enter local streams.

 

Pickle Brine

 

Pickle brine melts ice at temperatures as low as -6° Fahrenheit. Prewetting with brine will prevent bonding between pavement and ice.

Combined with salt, pickle brine prevents loose salt rocks from bouncing around. Unlike cheese brine, pickle brine carries no risk of an unpleasant smell, so you and your nose are safe.

 

Cheese Brine

 

Cheese brine is a salty water used to keep soft cheeses afloat. It is also used to melt snow on Wisconsin’s roads. Cheese brine holds up in temperatures as low as  -21.0° F.

The odor is temporary, but I won’t lie to you: It stinks. However, it won’t leave behind any residue or a lingering odor.

 

DIY De-icers

 

You can make each of these de-icer solutions using items you may already have on hand. Or you can pick them up in a quick and inexpensive shopping trip to a local grocery store. These are all great options if you don’t want to leave a footprint after the snow melts.

 

To try these for yourself, fill a spray bottle with salt and a combination of either beet juice or pickle juice. Give it a good shake and mix it up. Only you know exactly what you need it for, so experiment with it.

 

Photo courtesy of MMartin1202/Pixabay

Sources:

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How to Melt Ice Naturally

http://farmersalmanac.com/home-garden/2010/02/15/how-to-melt-ice-naturally/

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Why Pickle Brine Is a Secret Weapon Against Ice

http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/2014/02/140204-melt-snow-ice-salt-beet-juice-pickle-brine/

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Eco-friendly Salt Alternatives for Melting Ice and Snow

http://www.greenmoxie.com/natural-green-salt-alternatives-for-melting-ice-and-snow/

*****

Cheese To The Rescue: Surprising Spray Melts Road Ice

http://www.npr.org/sections/thetwo-way/2014/01/21/264562529/cheese-to-the-rescue-surprising-spray-melts-road-ice

 

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