Listen Here!
April 23, 2017
Local Show archive

Listen Here!
April 22, 2017
Handyman Show archive

Get help from the Handyman:  

Glenn's mailing
it in every week!

Enter your email address below to subscribe to Glenn's weekly e-newsletter. It's free!



Saturday, April 29



Heating & Cooling Contractors

Randazzo Heating, Cooling and Fireplaces

Since 1988 Randazzo Heating, Cooling and Fireplaces has been NATE certified, licensed and insured. Call Randazzo 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Highly trained technicians. Lennox and York dealer. We have our own installers and service all makes and models. We install and service geothermal.

Website for more info


Roofing Material

Eastern Michigan Distributors

Residential and commercial products –dimensional shingles, rolled roofing products, coatings, vinyl siding, lumber and gutter materials. Family owned and operated for 50 years. Detroit and Southfield locations for your convenience.

Website for more info


Kitchens & Baths

Universal Plumbing Supply

Why settle for pictures when you can get a world of choice at Universal Plumbing? Choose from Michigan's largest selection of under mounted sinks, a display of 500 faucets and a huge collection of working toilets, vessles, tubs, spas & designer items.

Website for more info


Subscribe to the FREE Handyman Helper e-newsletter

Register with your e-mail address here to get America's Master Handyman® Helper, our new weekly newsletter by email with information and special offers from the Handyman Show.

Publication date: 12/08/2016

 Click here for a printer-friendly version

Check before buying ice-melting products

 

Once you get the snow thrower tuned up and your shovels ready for winter, don’t forget to stock up on the proper ice melters for your home. No matter what the forecast is for this winter, you still need to stock up on ice melters that will help you get rid of the snow and ice around your home when it does arrive.

Here is a short course on ice melters to make it easier to pick one that will meet your needs.

Many people just grab a bag of any type of ice melter because they think that they are all the same. And 50 years ago when rock salt was the only product on the market that was true. But today, there are products that work best in extreme cold weather, others that are less harmful to your vegetation, concrete and pets, and others that combine a variety of ingredients to give you a little bit of everything.

The key in choosing the proper product for the job is not to rely just on the fancy packaging or brand name, but to look at the ingredients it is derived from. Some ingredients will only melt ice and snow in warmer temperatures and may damage your concrete, while others will melt snow faster and in subzero temperatures but may harm your grass.

For example, rock salt is made with sodium chloride and is the least expensive option, but it could damage your concrete or pavers and it doesn’t work below 22 degrees Fahrenheit. Also, it is endothermic, so rather than releasing heat, it must draw heat from the surroundings to dissolve.

At the other end of the price range is calcium chloride. It works more rapidly and releases heat to melt snow and ice. It is an exothermic product that will melt down to minus 25 degrees Fahrenheit. And while it is less damaging to concrete, it can ruin grass, plants, and is harmful to pets.

For those concerns you can try products that are made from a mixture of ingredients, like those made with potassium chloride, which can melt ice down to 12 degrees Fahrenheit and are less harmful.

There are a lot of brands on the market, but some better ones include SafeStep from North American Salt/Compass Minerals, nasalt.com; Ice Melt from Scotwood Industries, scotwoodindustries.com; and Qik Joe from Milazzo Industries, milazzoindustries.com. If you have pets, North American Salt’s Sure Paws and Safe Pet Ice Melter from Milazzo Industries are popular pet-friendly brands.

One innovative product I’ve found is Ice ‘B Gone Magic from Melters LLC, meltersofmichigan.com. The product starts out as ordinary rock salt, and is treated with a liquid agricultural by-product of the rum and vodka distilling process. Then it is blended with magnesium chloride to make it more effective down to minus 35 degrees Fahrenheit.

While most of the ice-melting focus is on sidewalks and driveways, many people like to keep ice and snow off their deck so they can use their grill. If you have a composite deck, top manufacturers such as Trex and TimberTech recommend using a plastic shovel to remove snow first and then using calcium chloride or rock salt to melt the snow and ice. If you have a wood deck, the best thing to do is shovel it with a plastic shovel and then use good traction sand or kitty litter, because rock salt or ice melters will damage the wood.

A little prior planning and prompt purchases now will help prevent those slippery sidewalks.

Note: This article was accurate at the date of publication. However, information contained in it may have changed. If you plan to use the information contained herein for any purpose, verification of its continued accuracy is your responsibility.

20 most recent Handyman Columns


Tank versus tankless hot water heater


About those 2016 energy tax credits


Low inventory translates to a seller’s market


Time for spring project planning


Try green products for remodeling, cleaning


Color trends more muted for home’s interior, vibrant on exterior


Use planning to survive power outages


Local bath remodeling trends mirror national study


Kitchen, bath remodeling have evolved


Change home’s floor plan to keep current


Home show attendance sign of housing rebound


Innovative products on display at builder’s show in Orlando


50th electronics show focuses on connectivity


Planning will make move to new home smoother


Odd sounds in home can be fixed


Winter’s for indoor projects, spring planning


Best methods to clean up those party spills


Get your chimney ready for Santa


Improve your indoor comfort


Check before buying ice-melting products


Browse-by-date Index

Copyright 2017 H & S Associates, Inc. | Copyright & Proprietary Information Notice | Contact us