Winter is almost here. Snow is starting to fall and temperatures are dropping quickly. Although snow is great for making snowmen and having awesome snowball fights, it can be dangerous to walk on or drive in. The key to making your sidewalks and driveways safer is to prevent ice from building up at all. This isn’t a hard task to do and you’ll be glad you did it. Slipping and falling on ice is never good. You could break something or hit your head. Or your car could slide into another car from the ice. Here’s how to prevent ice from building up on sidewalks and driveways.
How to Prevent Ice from Building Up
Shovel Right After It Snows
This is one of the best things that you can do to prevent ice from building up. When the snow gets packed down from cars, or from people walking on it, it becomes very slick as the temperature freezes. Once you have a sheet of ice on your sidewalk or driveway it’s really hard to remove. Shoveling your driveway and sidewalk will remove all the snow that can turn into ice. Make sure that your shovel gets all the way down to the cement so that there is no snow leftover to create ice. A snow shovel with a metal strip on the end is the best way to make sure that all the snow is scraped up.
Salt lowers the freezing point of water, therefore, it melts ice. After you shovel, it’s a good idea to spread de-icing salt all across your sidewalks, driveways, or walkways. This will make sure that any ice that starts to form will melt or not form at all. You can find de-icing salt at any home improvement store for a good price.
Image Source: A Yard and a Half
Using a sheet or a blanket is a great way to prevent ice from building up on sidewalks and driveways. Of course, if you have a large driveway this would be hard to do. People that have a very small driveway with room enough for one car might consider doing this. It’s also a good idea for people with a small balcony. All you need to do is cover the cement with something so that ice might form on the cover, but not what you’re covering. A large tarp will also get the job done. Then all you need to do is remove the tarp and you’re ready to go without any ice to stop you.
Improving traction will prevent people from slipping and falling and will also limit the amount of ice that builds up. Kitty litter, sand, or ashes are all great choices. These will make for better footing, and better traction for tires. Put these things on top of already salted ice so that it won’t be slick at all. It’s a good idea to put some of this where there’s a dip in the driveway so that your tires won’t get stuck if it snows a lot. Putting this on stairs is also a great idea. When you put traction improving substances on slippery surfaces it will prevent slick ice from forming because it will have those substances embedded into it. That way, if ice does form it won’t be quite as slippery because it will have sand in it.
It’s really hard to remove a thick layer of packed down snow and ice. Prevent ice from building up in the first place and your job will be a lot easier. Plus, everyone will be a lot safer because they won’t fall and slip or have their car slide into something. Use these methods to prevent ice from building up and you’ll be glad you did when your sidewalks and driveways are clear of all ice.