Oakville Real Estate News

Eco-Friendly Ways To Remove Snow And Ice From Your Driveway


Blog by Joette Fielding | December 19th, 2013


Eco-Friendly Ways To Remove Snow And IceDe-icing your driveways and sidewalks with salt may be an efficient way to prevent slipping, but it also can cause harm to both the environment and your property. Salt (also known as rock salt) can not only damage soil and plants and contaminate groundwater, but it can also corrode driveways, car bodies and household floors.

This winter, opt for some eco-friendly remedies that not only help you keep your driveway and sidewalks clear, but also let you keep an eye on the environment.

Homemade Remedies
These at-home alternatives are not only good for the environment, but also good for your pockets.

Sand: Spread a layer of sand over the ice to provide traction on your driveway. Although sand doesn’t melt the ice (like salt), it will allow you to walk on your driveway with ease, and it isn’t toxic if absorbed in your garden or ingested by pets. Be careful not to lay down too much sand, or it could clog up sewers and storm drains.

Bird Seed: Another eco-friendly and cost efficient alternative is to lay birdseeds. Much like sand, it creates traction on your driveway but doesn’t actually melt the ice. Bonus: once spring comes, small animals can eat the left over seeds, which means they won’t clog your storm drains or leave a mess after the snow melts.

Standard Remedies
Tackle ice the traditional way with an eco-friendly Ice Melter.

Much like rock salt, Ice Melters instantly melt ice on driveways and sidewalks, even in temperatures as cold as -30 C. Yet instead of containing sodium chloride (a core ingredient in rock salt), many Ice Melters contain ingredients that are safer, less corrosive and gentler for the environment, such as calcium magnesium acetate, dolomite, calcium chloride and even degraded sugar beets. Various brands are available at most commercial retailers in Canada.

High Tech Remedies
These solutions use the latest science and technologies to rid your driveways of unwanted ice.

Snow-Melting Mats: Made from a durable, non-slip rubber, these mats are designed to lie on top of snow that has accumulated on your driveway, walkways and stairs. Each mat is equipped with a watertight cable that connects to a standard power source. The electric heating element inside the mats heats up and melts up to 2 inches of accumulated snow per hour. Bonus: several mats can be connected together to melt a larger surface of ice.

EcoTraction: This eco-friendly solution is made from a naturally occurring volcanic rock. The rock uses solar energy to melt the ice and then turns a dark green as it absorbs the water that gives ice its slippery quality. As the ice melts, the granules can quickly embed into ice and snow, providing the best traction. EcoTraction is also great for your lawn, as it helps improve soil aeration and nutrient retention, by slowly releasing minerals back into the soil.

Content courtesy of http://www.caamagazine.ca


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