Shovel Selection and Avoiding Slips and Falls

Best Shovels:  Plastic, Plastic, Plastic – because the tips do not scratch driveways and pavers

  • Ergonomic handles help relieve back strain
  • Larger shovels are not always better; having to make one or two extra passes across the driveway is always better than getting hurt

Ice Melter –

  • Generally, all ice melters work in the same way by depressing the freezing point of ice or snow and turning the mixture into a liquid or semi-liquid slush.
  • No Salt!  Ever!  Salt damages concrete and paver surfaces and is toxic to plants and grass if left down too long or applied excessively
  • The compound Magnesium Chloride (AMJ’s product of choice) is applied after precipitation has fallen or ice has formed when using a commercially available granular mix.
  •  Factors to consider for any anti-icer / de-icer product include (1) amount needed to be effective, (2) time needed to react and go into solution, (3) how long it will provide de-icing action (e.g., longer means fewer reapplications), (4) effectiveness of temperature range (magnesium chloride is 5 degrees F), and (5) environmental aspects such as residues, effects on plant life and effects on concrete.
  • Purchasing and use decisions should be carefully considered since anti-icing and de-icing performance capabilities of common ice melting compounds vary significantly.
  • Some companies add a color dye so you can see where it’s been spread, a nice feature
  • Once a significant melting has occurred, shoveling of the ice layer will be easier and allow things to dry out more quickly.
  • Magnesium Chloride residue on the surface will aid in slowing refreezes too, so you may use less product which is more cost effective and better for the environment.
  • Also look for new Pet Friendly products
  • Snow Shovels
  • Always use Plastic, Plastic, Plastic!