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Last minute company coming and you have a icy sidewalk? A fast way to make it not slippery is to use cat litter or fireplace ash if you have a fireplace. Just spread either along the sidewalk and your guests will have better traction.
By Debbie N from Tacoma, WA
I came home during a freezing rain storm on Sunday Night. My cement steps were treacherous and I was out of Ice Salt and table salt. I racked my brain to think of what I could use and went to make myself a pot of coffee then I thought of the used coffee grounds. They don't disintegrate so I tried them on my steps. They are still there and have not frozen over and are doing a fine job of keeping my stairs free of ice and snow. They don't seem to track in either.
By Katie from Sault Ste Marie, Ontario, Canada
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Here are questions related to Keeping Ice Off Steps and Walkways.
I live in an upstairs condo and in the winter we generally get some ice in Dallas. This means I am a prisoner in my home when it ices since I can't use my steep staircase until it melts. The condos do not allow us to use salt since it will kill the plants under the staircase nor can they afford to pay someone to remove the ice.
I've tried all kinds of kitty litter and sand mixtures and this just makes a muddy mess. Is there anything I can spray on the stairs that will prevent the build up of ice? I'm not in the best of health and almost fell when I tried to use a shovel to break up the 3 inches of ice that built up last year. I've heard of an environmentally safe product named Ice Melt Down, but can't find any reviews on it. Thanks!
By mrs joe 10/18/2011
Potash fertilizer will melt the ice, and not harm plants, grass or the sidewalks. You will know where you have used it, and how much, because it is pink. Keep it dry, though. Otherwise it will turn into a brick.
Thrifty Fun has been around so long that many of our pages have been reset several times. Archives are older versions of the page and the feedback that was provided then.
Here's an idea for a cheap salt bucket. If, like me, you occasionally purchase one of those large tubs of ice cream - the one gallon plus one quart size with a handle and a lid - save at least one tub to fill with salt for winter ice. It's the perfect size to carry out to the front or back walk. Since it has a lid, you can store it in the house without fear of kids or pets getting into or spilling it.
By Marie from West Dundee, IL