Snow Liquid Secrets


By Neal Glatt

If you’re preparing for winter operations, you’ve no doubt had some questions about incorporating liquids into your de-icing toolbox.  But with expensive equipment, the risk of slip and falls, and concerns about retraining crews, the concerns quickly add up.  Fortunately, the team at GrowTheBench has you covered with secrets that no one usually talks about.  Here’s what I wish I had known before I got started in liquids…

Our Snowfighters Virtual Bootcamp graduates learned these secrets straight from the source on our live course wrap-up yesterday.  If you missed out, be sure to enroll your snow team for our October 5 -15 Bootcamp session.  Your team of 10 will learn everything they need to get winter-ready for less than $5 per person, so sign up now!  Here’s the top three takeaways our experts shared:

Start Slowly: Liquids can be overwhelming, so it pays to start slowly.  Before you jump into brine making, custom mixing, and fleet-wide solutions, consider finding a reliable supplier and beginning with applications for sidewalks or small lots.  A small walk-behind sidewalk spreader, such as this one from High Country Spray Systems, costs less than $750 and is a great way to dip your toe into the world of liquid de-icers.

Beware of Mixing: The solution concentration for liquids can radically change the freezing point.  For instance, a CaCl concentration of 30% doesn’t freeze until -51°F making it an extremely effective de-icer.  But at 20% concentration, it freezes at 0°F.  And at 40% concentration, it freezes at +56°F leading to broken equipment and dangerous conditions.  With such extreme variations, liquids are no place to pretend to be a chemist.  Who knows what temperature a “custom brine mix” solution will freeze at, or what the repercussions will be.

Have Multiple Tools: While liquids are a phenomenal tool for reducing cost and environmental impact, they aren’t the perfect tool for every solution.  Understanding your weather patterns, operating temperatures, equipment constraints, and market expectations are all key to knowing when and where to employ the use of liquids.  Taking a well-thought-out and diversified approach allows you to keep customers happy and safe.

If you need more help getting your team up to speed on liquids and all things snow, don’t wait any longer to get in our October Bootcamp!  Even experienced snow pros tell us they get value from the refresher and training the team, while social distancing has never been easier.

Tags: Snowfighters , Bootcamp , Winter , Liquid , De-icing ,