Do You Know What Melts Ice Beside Salt?

Do You Know What Melts Ice Beside Salt?

Have you ever wondered if there are ways to melt ice without salt?

You are in luck.

In this article, I will explain to you what melts ice beside salt.

1. Other commercial deicers

Other than salt, which contains sodium chloride, you can use other commercial deicers. These contain different ice-melting chemical compounds such as calcium chloride, magnesium chloride, potassium chloride, and calcium magnesium acetate.

The deicer you choose will be determined by the temperatures of your environment. For instance, you cannot use potassium chloride at freezing temperatures because it stops being effective at 250F. In contrast, calcium chloride is effective at temperatures as low as -250F.

You should also consider the effects each chemical has on the environment. Like calcium chloride – though effective at melting ice, you might want to avoid it because of its high toxic levels.

Acetates like calcium magnesium acetate cause the least harm. However, they are quite expensive.

2. Fertilizer

Some of the ingredients used to make fertilizer have ice-melting qualities. It depends on which fertilizer you are using, so find out what ingredients yours contains.

Two common ingredients in fertilizers are potassium chloride and urea, both of which are effective at melting ice and snow. Watch out for ammonium sulfate too.

The downside of using fertilizer is that it can harm the environment. When temperatures return to normal, and the ice thaws out, the fertilizer will find its way to water bodies and disrupt aquatic life. It is also unsafe for your pets. Walking on it, their paws will begin to crack.

And finally, it may cause your concrete surfaces to crack. So don’t be too liberal with it. Use sparingly.

3. Rubbing alcohol

It won’t thaw out a big block of ice, but alcohol is effective when you use it on surfaces like windows or doors, where not much ice has accumulated. You see, alcohol has a lower freezing point than water.

Mix alcohol, warm water, and a few drops of liquid dish detergent. Pour this solution into a spray bottle. After that, you can use it on your windshield or your icy table top. It will loosen the ice and make it easy to scrape away.

4. Sugar

You may not know this, but sugar also helps ice to melt faster. It does this by lowering the freezing point of ice.

5. Pickle brine

Pickle brine is, in my opinion, the best homemade ice melting solution. It has less chloride than salt, which means it does not harm the environment as severely. Plus, you can use it in freezing weather because it has a low freezing point of -60F.

And if you apply it on the pavement before the weather gets too cold, it will stop the ice and snow from bonding with the surface, which will make it easy for you to chip it off.

6. Vinegar

If you mix vinegar with warm water and put the solution in a spray bottle, you will have a reliable ice melter to use on smaller surfaces like windows or stuck doors.

7. Sugar beet juice

Like sugar and salt, sugar beet juice also lowers the freezing point of water. Most people use it in salt or brine solutions.


So now you know. If you don’t have any salt around, you can apply any of these substances to the icy surface and still get good results.

  • January 16, 2017
  • Ice
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