Few things are worse than stepping out into the January cold and immediately slipping on icy concrete. It’s a tough decision to leave the warm environs of your co-op or condo apartment to go out into the frigid cold. Learning proper deicing techniques will help avoid bruises and potential lawsuits from slip and falls on co-op and condo property. In addition, boards and community associations must take care of icy sidewalks and parking lots as they can become a safety concern for all residents living in the building or in the condo complex.
Deicing compounds, combined with an abrasive element such as sand or kitty litter, break the bond between ice and the ground. The abrasive elements provide traction and reduce the overall amount of chemical used while the deicing chemicals combine with available moisture to form liquid brine, which has a lower freezing temperature than water. The brine melts downward until it can seep between the ice and pavement. Some deicers cause a chemical reaction that produces heat, further melting the problematic ice. Buying chemicals in pellet form is ideal because pellets dissolve more evenly than flakes or crystals, yielding stronger brine.
There are four deicing chemicals available:
a) sodium chloride (rock salt)
b) calcium chloride