Snowfall during winter can make a composite decking slippery. A slippery decking, in turn, can cause injury to an individual. To prevent that from happening, you should remove the snow that piles up on your composite decking. Ice melt is used to remove the ice on sidewalks and parking lots. Can you also put ice melt on composite decking?

What is Ice Melt?

Ice melt is a substance that you can use to remove ice. You can use ice melt to remove already formed ice on deckings and sidewalks. Apart from that, you can also apply the ice melt on your decking before it starts to snow. The ice melt will prevent the build-up of ice.

Choosing the Best Ice Melt for Composite Decking

Can You Put Ice Melt on Composite Decking?

There are different kinds of ice melts in stores. But it’s not all that is suitable for applying on composite deckings. You should always go for a kind of ice melt that is not too harsh. Additionally, the kind of ice melt that is harsh will also not be suitable for composite deckings.

Types of Ice Melt for Composite Decking

 The kind of ice melt to put on composite decking should be the kind that will not damage the deck. Calcium chloride ice melt and sodium chloride(rock salt) are two popular ice melt for deckings.

Calcium Chloride Ice Melt

First, the calcium chloride ice melt is suitable for composite deckings. It is also the most effective kind of ice melt when compared to other types. Calcium chloride dissolves ice effectively. It works by forming a liquid solution when in contact with snow or ice. The calcium chloride attracts moisture to form a liquid solution which lowers the water freezing point and causes ice to melt.

Sodium Chloride (Rock Salt)

Sodium Chloride is also known as rock salt, and is also a good ice melt. It is also cheap to buy. Rock Salt melts ice or snow by drawing heat from its surroundings. When applied in the right proportion, rock salt can not have any effect on plants. But when applied excessively, rock can be toxic to plants. It can also leave a whitish powdery residue on your deck.

Can You Put Ice Melt on Composite Decking

Yes, you can put ice melt on your composite decking. Calcium chloride ice melt is the best for wood-plastic composite . 

Wood decking can absorb calcium chloride ice melt. Unlike wood, WPC can not absorb calcium chloride ice melt.

Calcium chloride ice melt can cause a wood decking to crack, making it unsuitable for use on wood deckings. Composite decking, on the other hand, with its polymer cap, will not absorb calcium chloride. You don’t need to worry that the calcium chloride ice melt will crack your WPC.

In addition, you can also use rock salt for composite deckings, but use it moderately. Before laying ice melt on the deck, ensure it is not harsh. You should always test the rock salt before using it on the composite decking. One way to do this is by applying the ice melt on a small part of a decking. If the ice melt does not damage the decking, you can apply it to the deck.

Precautions to Take When Using Ice Melt on Composite Decking

Knowing that you can use ice melt on composite decking, you need to be careful. Below are some precautions to take. 

Avoid Ice Melts with Traction Grit 

Tractions are great for preventing slipping on ice, but you should not use them on composite deckings. It is because tractions can scratch the surface of the composite decking. Avoid ice melts with tractions grits like sands, sawdust and more. You should only use an ice melt that does not contain any traction grits.

Avoid Ice Melts With Colourant

 Ice with colourants can stain composite deckings. You should not use it on your composite decking. If you want to apply an ice melt on your decking, choose a type that doesn’t contain colourants.

Conclusion 

You can put ice melt on composite decking. Calcium chloride is suitable for composite deckings. Additionally, avoid using ice melt with traction grits and colourants.