Many Vancouverites were left disappointed today after missing out on free road salt at the city’s fire halls, but there are other alternatives for de-icing your sidewalk.
Neil Lambert owner of Anything Concrete says salt can often actually do more damage than good such as corrode the driveway or even your car.
“It is probably one of the best things to use but it also chews through your concrete. When it’s the pure form, it likes to eat through things.”
He says rather than going with salt, there are plenty of cheap alternatives that are environmentally sound and can give you good grip on the ground.
“There’s a couple different options if you’re going for a green version of a de-icer. With birdseed, it’s a rough non-slip product that you can put down or another thing would be just normal fine sand. Kitty litter is another good one. You want something that’s going to have texture.”
Lambert says with birdseed, you may get the fringe benefit of drawing songbirds to your home. He says if you go for kitty litter, make try and get a charcoal or sandy litter rather than a clumping one which could turn to mush.
He says people should also be wary of online home-remedies for de-icing found online, some of which could cause damage to concrete and driveways.
“If you do put something that’s bad on your driveway, trying to fix it is a very costly endeavour.”
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Of course, if you can’t do without salt you can always have another crack at picking some up from one of 10 City of Vancouver fire halls, which will again be dispensing free salt tomorrow.
Two deliveries are expected tomorrow, one between 8 a.m. and noon, the second in the afternoon.