Deicing is a reactive operation where a deicer is applied to the top of an accumulation of snow, ice, or frost that has already bonded to the pavement surface and can no longer be physically removed. Deicing costs more than anti-icing in materials, time, equipment, and environmental damage. Deicing is the “traditional” approach to winter maintenance.

Removing ice that has already bonded to the pavement is difficult. Removing it mechanically can damage equipment and surfaces. Generally, enough ice must be melted chemically to break the bond between the ice and the pavement. This requires larger amounts of chemical, making deicing much less efficient than anti-icing.

Use the application rate table to help with deicing. Using recommended rates will help with these common problems:

  • Over-salting. Most over-salting can be prevented by using calibrated spreaders and good judgment in selecting application rates based on pavement temperatures.
  • Trying to melt everything. Don’t try to melt all the snow on the surface with salt. This is an overuse of materials. Apply just enough to loosen the bond between the pavement surface and the snowpack so it can be plowed off.