Snow and Ice Management for Maintenance
Let’s start with the most
basic of all snow and ice management solutions, Rock Salt! Most users of professional
ice melt have learned that while cheap, Rock Salt isn’t a particularly efficient
solution. If you’re in Texas or southern Georgia, then rock salt works fine. In areas that get snow infrequently and the temperature doesn’t drop below 21 degrees - saltwater’s
freezing temperature - Rock Salt is a solid option. But overall, there’s a wide
variety of professional
ice melt options that will do a better job and cause far less collateral
damage to cars, roads, sidewalks, and the environment in general.
Having a global view of all the relevant ice
melt products is how you can choose the best professional snow and ice
management solution. This, along with understanding the application area’s
latitude and weather patterns, the average days of snowfall and icy conditions,
and how narrow roads and streets, are lets you turn the entire question into a
math problem to figure out the absolute best product for the circumstances!
Even then, you’ll find that there’s a multitude of good options for commercial ice melt and professional
snow and ice management.
For many years, the most
reliable solution was either calcium chloride or ice melt brine made from
calcium chloride. When mixed with water there is an exothermic reaction, more specifically
a catalytic reaction to calcium
chloride, where water becomes the generator of heat! Continental
Research created a blend that became known as
the industry standard commercial
ice melt which we called “Grade 5 calcium chloride Melt Away”. We felt that
too much calcium chloride would do the job of keeping ice melted below -50
degrees but was so caustic that it would also damage dispensing equipment and
pavement. Plus, the residual could lead to corrosion. Of course, there are some
places in North America that see plenty of the kind of weather where such
measures are needed. However, the rule of thumb is that if you don’t live in a place
with extreme winters (think Grand Forks, ND or Saskatchewan Canada) it just doesn’t
make sense to use such a high of a concentration of any ice melting solution.
Professional Ice Melt
Solutions When You Need Industrial Strength Products.
To combat the problem of uncontrolled concentrations in ice management products, we developed our own
line of professional ice melt solutions. Continental’s proprietary ice melt –
Melt Away - was designed for the middle zone which ranges approximately from the
southern border of Canada to the Mason/Dixon line at the 32nd
parallel. Our commercial ice melt is comprised of pellets rather than flakes in
order to concentrate it all into one “craggy little ball that has Velcro like
stick-to-it-ness.” Each individual pellet bores its own small hole, weakening
ice’s structural integrity, and then remains liquified under the snow and ice!
This makes it much easier to scrape and remove any ice with a plow or even just a
shovel. With Melt Away’s exothermic
properties, it goes to work immediately and will work in
temperatures down to -25 degrees. Plus, Melt Away is safer than the most highly concentrated calcium
chloride ice melt!
Another formula we've developed has a
combination of several ingredients which in concert work with similar effectiveness
to our Melt Away but is less expensive. Thermosyn is a blend of calcium,
potassium, sodium chlorides and trademarked “Urea Max.” A special feature of
Thermosyn is that it contains a dye in the Urea Max that allows the user to see
where they have broadcast it already, so it’s difficult to use ‘too much’. Thermosyn is user-friendly, delivers quick results, and remains effective even in temperatures as low as -21 degrees. Because
of Thermosyn’s lower price and particular efficacy in places that get modest or
only intermittent snow, its popularity has made it our top selling ice melt!
In addition to ice melt, Continental
formulated Pro-Tec Plus, a liquid ice
preventer that can be applied before anticipated snow and ice. Pro-Tec Plus
keeps ice and snow from bonding to surfaces like steps, handrails, sidewalks,
and pavement. Pro-Tec Plus is ideal for
application on areas that freeze-over and become slip and fall spaces where an
extra degree of preparedness and caution is warranted. People often stretch
their bang for the buck by adding Pro-Tec Plus to cinders or lava rock to add
some grip to their ice melt spray.
Our most recent addition to
the Continental line of winter products is Winter Rinse. Regardless of
which ice melt
solution best suits your specific needs, all ice melt solutions create a film
on vehicles, road plowing equipment, pavement and salt spreaders. This film
does not wash off with soap and water because it’s an inorganic calcification
that requires a unique solution to remove it. Winter Rinse really
gets the job done and has been an integral part of our 3 step process for
corrosion prevention. All you need to do is dilute Winter Rinse in water at
a ratio of 20 x 1 and then apply to the affected
surface. Let it work for 5 minutes
without agitation and then hose off with water. Then you can go about cleaning
your vehicles as you normally would using any quality industrial degreaser. Remember
to do this several times as each rain activates the brine or other ice melt
solution on the roadways and reattaches to your rolling stock.
Best Snow and Ice Management Solutions to Prevent Slips and Falls
Continental Research carries many winter
products designed for snow
and ice management. Fortunately, we have developed solutions
specifically regarding slip and fall protection, snow removal, and vehicle
Slik and Big Slik
both fall into the category of snowplow wax. To be clear there is NO wax in
these products but there are advanced resins and polymers that functions as
release agents and don’t allow snow and ice to stick to the metal of snowplow,
shovels and other snow removal implements. You use Slik and Big Slik to prevent
ice build-up. These solutions are designed to keep the equipment you need most during winter in working condition!
Melt Away De-Icer
is Continental’s aerosol windshield and lock de-icer. This industrial
strength aerosol solution is designed to remove ice and snow build-up on
windshields, windows, locks, mirrors, handrails, and other surfaces. What’s
more – Melt-Away De-Icer is safe for enamel paints, glass, chrome,
rubber, and concrete. When you need an industrial strength aerosol de-icer that
gets the job done fast, Melt Away De-icer will not disappoint!
Popular Winter Maintenance Solutions for Maintenance Professionals
There’s more to winter
products than commercial ice
melt, de icer
spray and general snow and
ice management. Continental Research carries a complete and robust
number of other winter product items directly tied to ice and snow management. We’ve listed out the
solutions that are popularly paired with commercial ice melting and snow
Kare is Continental’s battery terminal cleaner which
also has an acid indicator that alerts you when your batteries need
replacement, topping off the acid or changing out the terminals. Kare will keep
your batteries protected despite extreme weather.
an aerosol grease made with the same molybdenum and other natural &
synthetic components as our bulk grease. It sprays out as a thin liquid. As the propellant dissipates, the grease becomes thicker providing real
lubrication where there is no fitting for bulk grease.
a 4-way penetrating oil that lubricates, busts frozen or corroded nuts and
bolts, and displaces moisture. Tefla-Pent
also acts as a protective coating for metal parts and electrical connections,
both in & on your equipment, as well as on the shelf in the tool crib. Additionally,
Tefla-Pent does a great job of cleaning grease and other debris from motor
windings and has a dielectric strength of 21,600
Graf is an aerosol graphite lubricant that is
completely dry in just minutes. Graf is particularly important for
lubricating the post on the wench that raises and lowers the snowplow. Graf is
also great for coating the funnel of the bins and the spinner on snowplow
Similarly, Moly Coat is equally good for this application, so it
just comes down to whether you prefer molybdenum or graphite.
comes to commercial ice melting and snow management solutions there is a lot to
cover. Each facility or maintenance team may need a different, unique solution
to fit their unique problem. If you have any question regarding professional
ice melt or snow management solutions, speak with an expert today!