A Slippery Slope ?!

Photo by Gilly Youner

Photo by Gilly Youner

Now that winter’s finally here! A repeat of important reminders about using the right type of salt to de-ice sidewalks and steps.

If you intend to use de-icing salt this winter, there are two things to keep in mind.

One is that, as the Landmarks Conservancy warns, rock salt a/k/a halite or sodium chloride (the stuff usually sold in supermarkets), “should be avoided.” The far better alternative is calcium chloride, the Brooklyn Botanic Garden’s choice when it has to use de-icing salt. As it isn’t as corrosive as sodium chloride, calcium chloride de-icer is less harmful to resurfaced stoops, cement sidewalks, dog paws and plants.

The other thing to keep in mind is that stores sometimes run out of calcium chloride as PSCC Trustee John Casson has discovered to his dismay. Not willing to get stuck this winter, a trip to Tarzian Hardware (sponsor of the PSCC’s Ortner Awards) enabled him to beef up his stock of calcium chloride de-icing salt. They also have 40-pound containers of the de-icer that they will deliver to your home.