Ice melt products can aid in your fight against ice and snow build-up.  Not all ice melt products are created the same or have the same ingredients.  It is important to know what you are buying and how effective the product really is.  Most all ice melt products contain rock salt.  Rock salt is a natural mineral that is found deep with in the earth.  Rock salt for ice melt purposes is mined from underground deposits.  These deposits are usually the remains of inland seas that no longer exist.  When the seas dried up they left deposits of salt.  This salt or halite  is what is mined today for use in ice melt products.  Ice melt products work by reducing the freezing point of water (snow and ice).  When ice melt products are mixed with snow and ice, the lower the freezing point of the solid and turn it into a liquid.

Ice Melt Products

Other ice melt products.

Most ice melt products contain magnesium chloride as well.  Magnesium chloride is use to boost the performance of rock salt products.  There are several benefits from using magnesium chloride over just straight rock salt.  One of the biggest positives for magnesium chloride is that it is less corrosive.  Meaning that it is safer to use on cement surfaces and around vegetation.  Rock salt products can cause concrete to break down or pit over time.  Rock salt will also burn shrubs, trees and grass if too much product is applied near them.  Magnesium chloride is usually found in a flakey form which allows it to break down faster.  Breaking down faster allows for a brine to be created with the product and snow or ice.  The brine will continue to break down snow and ice quicker than rock salt.  The main reasons for this is the size of the rock salt crystals and their ability to break down.