Know when, where, and how to treat ice on your walkways

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PARKERSBURG, W.Va. (WTAP)- Hardware stores in the Mid-Ohio Valley have been struggling to stay fully stocked with items like salt, ice melt and shovels, all of which are necessary to help keep your drive and walk ways clear.

With ice from Friday still on the ground and cold temperatures sticking around for a few more days, clearing the ice before more snow arrives is critical.

Even though hardware stores carry many products to treat ice, experts say knowing when and where to use it is key.

They say rock salt doesn’t work in temperatures below 5 degrees while ice melt and other products work at or below zero degrees.

Owner of Parks Hardware & Supply Inc. in Parkersburg, Janice Rexroad, explains the effects of salts and ice melt. “Well they just have to be careful if they have new concrete, they don’t want to put rock salt on it because it is very harmful to their concrete; although it does melt the ice. We have other chemicals like ice-melt or calcium chloride that isn’t as harmful and that they work at lower temperatures. Once it freezes on there, it is hard to get off with a shovel and even with the different ice-melt, it depends on the temperatures how well they will work.”

A pet-friendly version of ice-melt is also available.

Experts say if you already have salt laid out it should keep up with a light snowfall, but if we see larger amounts you may have to lay more.

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