Sansums’ Guide To Using Paving Salt

Winter is well on its way. Soon, roads and driveways will ice up, becoming a hazard for motorists and pedestrians. To remove ice quick, paving salt is excellent. Paving salt is excellent for removing ice and ensuring the space around your house is slip-free.

What is Paving Salt?

Paving salt, like any other salt, consists of the elements sodium and chloride. Yet, unlike table salt, paving salt is unrefined. Table salt has the impurities removed so that it is safe for eating, yet paving salt remains in its natural form.

When Should I spread Paving Salt?

The best time to use salt is before frost or snow is forecast. This will help prevent ice forming or snow settling. You can also spread salt on top of snow after it settles to melt the snow and make it easier to move.

How Much Paving Salt Shall I Use?

The amount of paving salt to use will vary depending on the temperature and location. For example, steep hills and sharp bends will need more rock salt compared to flat and straight roads.

However, it is recommended that around 10-15 grams of rock salt should be spread per square metre. Though, this can increase to 20-40 grams if the weather conditions are more severe or if the rain has fallen before freezing temperatures are predicted, as rainfall will wash away the rock salt.

How to Use Paving Salt

You can spread salt by hand using a shovel or scoop, but make sure to wear gloves.

1. Shovel Any Snow From the Area

It’s important to shovel as much snow and ice as possible from your driveway or pavement first.

2. Apply Salt to Frozen Areas

Keeping in mind that too much salt can damage concrete, distribute a thin layer across the ice. Once the salt’s applied, most of the ice will start to melt away. Thicker patches could take longer, so it’s a good idea to let the salt sit for a while before proceeding to the next step.

3. Brush or Shovel Remaining Ice

After the salt has melted most of the ice, this step is easy. All you need to do is brush any remaining patches away!

4. Apply Another Layer

As needed. If there are any remaining icy patches, apply another layer of salt and repeat until the area is safe.

Important Tips:

  • Keep paving salt away from lawns – it will kill grass and leave brown patches when the ice melts away
  • Keep away from metals -paving salt may corrode the wet metal
  • Make sure pavements and driveways are kept shovelled before the snow becomes ice with foot traffic.
  • If ice is forecast, put down a thin layer of paving salt, just to be sure, before any snow or ice settles.
  • Keep paving salt on standby, so you have it available when the cold weather sets in.
  • Pay extra attention when clearing snow and ice from steps and steep pathways – they’ll need extra salt.
  • Take care where you move any snow – ensure it doesn’t block people’s paths or drains.

Don’t struggle in the snow and ice this winter. Clearing your property should be no problem but does require a bit of work. Regularly topping up the salt and ensuring your space is kept clear will keep you and your family safe.

It’s also a good idea to keep an eye on weather warnings and your local council website, where they will more than likely provide more information on their winter service and the snow code on how you and your family can stay safe.