Keep Your Home Ice-Free This Season with the Right Rock Salt

The beginning of February means Groundhog Day, and everyone is eager to know how much longer of a winter we can expect. Regardless of whether or not that little guy sees his shadow, though, NJ residents can generally count on the fact that winter is going to be long and cold.

That’s especially true this year! We’ve seen a fair bit of cold weather and heavy precipitation this 2016-2017 season, and more is on the way! How will you protect your property until Spring arrives?

Choosing the right rock salt will make a big difference in how you survive the season. This guide will walk you through the process of picking the best rock salt or ice melt for the job.

Understand Your Needs

First things first. In order to select the right rock salt for your property, you need to consider your property and household’s unique needs. Here are a few important things to think about:

Surface Type

What type of surface will you be trying to protect this winter? Those with concrete driveways and walkways may have some concerns about the corrosive effects that certain types of rock salt can have on concrete.

If this is true for you, you’ll need to look specifically for ice melting products that have been designed to be compatible with concrete, and that will still be extremely effective in cold temperatures without causing any damage to your property.


Households, schools, daycare centers, churches and other related facilities will need to think about the safety of children who may come into contact with rock salt. Children love to play in the snow and because of this, kid’s skin might come into contact with rock salt or any other ice melting material.

In order to make sure that your children are secure and protected, you’ll need to select an ice melting product that is safe for use around children. This means finding a brand with materials that have a low toxicity level.

It’s also a good idea to find a blend that has been tinted with a different color so that it is easy to spot. This will enable you to keep an eye on areas with a high concentration of ice melting products so that you can direct children to play in other areas and ensure that they don’t come in contact with it.


Pets like cats and dogs are another concern when spreading rock salt or other ice melting materials. First, you don’t want your pets to potentially consume or come in contact with high volumes of snow that have been treated with an ice melting product.

Secondly, when a dog or cat’s paws become exposed to rock salt or ice melt, it can cause heat-related pain and chemical burning or irritation. Certain brands of ice melt are actually designed to accommodate the special needs of pet owners, to ensure that their furry friends will be out of harm’s way while their properties remain fully protected against the hazards of snow and ice.

Trip Hazards

Many types of rock salt come in pellet form. This is fine for use around most people, but those who have difficulty walking may need special consideration.

The people who are most at risk are those with disabilities that impair their ability to walk, as well as the elderly.

For this reason, households with elderly residents, nursing homes, hospitals, churches and similar facilities will need to look for ice melting products that are available in flake form. Because these lay flush against the ground, they will create less of a tripping hazard.

Environmental Concerns

Whether you’re extremely proud of your perfectly manicured lawn and garden or you simply have major concerns about the safety of our environment, you may find yourself wondering what type of effect rock salt will have on grass, plant life and even the groundwater supply.

Whenever this is the case, you’ll want to keep your eyes peeled for ice melting brands that are formulated to be safer for use around vegetation and better for the environment.

Know Your Options

Although most people are familiar with traditional rock salt, there are many who have no idea that they have other options for melting snow and ice.

Is traditional rock salt the right option for your home, or should you be working with a different type of material? To help you make the best choice, here’s a list of your ice melting options:

Sodium Chloride

Sodium Chloride is what most people think of when they hear the words “rock salt”. This traditional product has been used for centuries as a means of lowering the freezing temperature of water.

It is the most affordable and easily accessible type of ice melt throughout the country. Although it generally loses its effectiveness at about 10 degrees Fahrenheit, it is still a great option for temperatures below freezing. It is the lowest-frill ice melting solution.

Calcium Chloride

Calcium chloride is another extremely popular option for melting snow and ice. It’s a great choice for NJ residents, as it works in even the most frigid temperatures.

It is able to quickly penetrate snow and ice, and remains effective down to -25 degrees Fahrenheit. Depending on the brand, calcium chloride can be very safe for use on concrete and for use around plants. It is also available in both pellet and flake form.

Magnesium Chloride

Like calcium chloride, magnesium chloride is able to manage snow and ice in temperatures as low as -25 degrees Fahrenheit.

This makes it safe for use on delicate surfaces. Certain brands of magnesium chloride are designed to be safe around plants, animals and children.

Calcium Magnesium Acetate

Calcium magnesium acetate is a great choice that lets you have the best of both worlds. It combines the melting power and safety factor of both calcium chloride and magnesium chloride. Many brands that formulate CMA work to create blends that are safe for use around children and animals.

Non-Chemical Solutions

Looking to avoid the use of chemicals altogether? While non-chemical snow and ice solutions aren’t able to actually melt these frozen surfaces, they are able to improve safety by boosting traction.

Many NJ residents choose to spread sand, stone grits or a combination of the two across the surfaces of their driveways, parking lots and walkways to reduce slips and falls.

Buying the Right Rock Salt/Ice Melt in NJ

Braen Supply is the perfect place to go to for all of your rock salt and ice melting needs in NJ. We are passionate about helping home and business owners to find the ideal ice melting solution for their unique needs.

Our massive inventory of ice melting products feature materials that are safe for use around children, pets, the elderly, plants and more – all while offering incredible melting power. All of our rock salt and ice melt is available for purchase at competitive, wholesale prices.

Talk to one of our friendly professionals about ordering ice melt for pickup or bulk delivery to areas throughout parts of NJ, NY, NYC and PA.

Rock Salt Buying Guide