Table summarizing of properties of deicing agents. Adapted from Local Road Research Board, 2012, Ketcham et al., 1996 and Levelton Consultants Ltd., 2008.
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Category Type Lowest Practical Melting Temperature 1,2 Potential for corrosion impairment3 Environmental Impact3
Atmospheric Corrosion to Metals Concrete Matrix Concrete Reinforcing Water Quality/Aquatic Live Air Quality Soils Vegetation
Chloride Based Deicers Sodium Chloride 15°F High; will initiate and accelerate corrosion Low/moderate; Will exacerbate scaling; low risk of paste attack High: Will initiate corrosion of rebar Moderate: Excessive chloride loading/metals contaminants; ferrocyanide additives Low: Leads to reduced abrasives use Moderate/High: Sodium accumulation breaks down soil structure and decreases permeability and soil stability; potential for metals to mobilize High: Spray causes foliage damage; osmotic stress harms roots, chloride toxicosis
Calcium Chloride -20°F High; Will initiate and accelerate corrosion; higher potential for corrosion related to hydroscopic properties Low/moderate; Will exacerbate scaling; low risk of paste attack High: Will initiate corrosion of rebar Moderate: Excessive chloride loading; heavy metal contamination Low: Leads to reduced abrasives use Low/Moderate: Improves soil structure; increases permeability; potential for metals to mobilize High: Spray causes foliage damage; osmotic stress harms roots, chloride toxicosis
Magnesium Chloride -10°F High; Will initiate and accelerate corrosion; higher potential for corrosion related to hydroscopic properties Moderate/high: Will exacerbate scaling; risk of paste deterioration from magnesium High: Will initiate corrosion of rebar, evidence suggest MgCl2 has the highest potential for corrosion of chloride produces Moderate: Excessive chloride loading; heavy metal contamination Low: Leads to reduced abrasives Low/Moderate: Improves soil structure; increases permeability; potential for metals to mobilize High: Spray causes foliage damage; osmotic stress harms roots, chloride toxicosis
Acetate Based Deicers Calcium Magnesium Acetate 20°F Low/moderate; Potential to initiate and accelerate corrosion due to elevated conductivity Moderate/high: Will exacerbate scaling; risk of pate deterioration from magnesium reactions Low; probably little or no effect High: Organic content leading to oxygen demand Low: Leads to reduced abrasives use Low/Moderate: Improves soil structure; increases permeability; potential for metals to mobilize Low: Little or no adverse effect; osmotic stress at high levels
Potassium Acetate -15°F Low/moderate; Potential to initiate and accelerate corrosion due to elevated conductivity Low; probably little or no effect High: Organic content leading to oxygen demand Low: Leads to reduced abrasives use
Sodium Acetate -20°F
Carbohydrates Beet Juice NA Low; Potential to initiate and accelerate corrosion due to elevated conductivity clams of mitigation of corrosion require further evaluation Low; Probably little or no effect Low; Probably little or no effect; claims of mitigation of corrosion require further evaluation High Organic matter leading to oxygen demand; nutrient enrichment by phosphorus and nitrogen; heavy metals Low: Leads to reduced abrasive use Low: Probably little or no effect; limited information available Low: Probably little or no effect
Molasses NA
Corn Syrup NA

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