can I dry wet ice melter?

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Old 06-24-17, 02:45 PM
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can I dry wet ice melter?

So I have some ice melter granules/pellets (you know the kind you spread on the sidewalk to melt icy conditions in the winter) and I stored some of it in a five-gallon bucket but didn't have it sealed with lid. I noticed it somehow got wet on it's own over time, just sitting in the bucket in a dry shed. I was reading about it and discovered that this kind of ice melter which contains sodium chloride (salt) will pull water out of the air so unless it is in a sealed container it will get wet. I'd like to completely dry out this wet ice melter stuff if possible, and then store properly in a sealed container when/if it will dry.

I was thinking maybe if I spread it out thin on a tarp or something in a warm, dry room that it might dry out after a day or two. Or will it probably not ever dry, and just stay wet because it will just continue to pull out whatever moisture might be in the air?
 
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Old 06-24-17, 07:37 PM
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How about spreading it on the tarp & use a hair dryer, to dry it.
 
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Old 06-24-17, 07:58 PM
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What you think is a dry room still has moisture in the air. You might be able to dry it in an oven a little at a time at very low temp for an hour or so. But then you'll be using electric/gas the whole time


The stuff is so cheap why bother? And sodium chloride is plain old salt, not good for plants or lawns or concrete.
 
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Old 06-24-17, 09:27 PM
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How about spreading it on the tarp & use a hair dryer, to dry it.
Naw, that would probably take too much time, and electricity. Wouldn't be worth it.

What you think is a dry room still has moisture in the air.
That's what I kinda figured. So probably in what seems to be me a nice "dry" room it still might never actually dry out like I'd want it to? Maybe if I put it in the boiler room where it's pretty warm and dry all the time? I guess I could at least try, wouldn't be difficult...

You might be able to dry it in an oven a little at a time at very low temp for an hour or so. But then you'll be using electric/gas the whole time
Naw wouldn't want to use electricity/gas, not worth that expense, especially if I just "might" be able to dry it out that way.

The stuff is so cheap why bother?
Not particularly that cheap; I think I paid like $9.95 something like that or maybe more for a 25-pound bag at the hardware store last winter. It was labeled "ice melt" not just plain old rock salt, but a sodium chloride type formulation. I used it mostly for a big wooden deck we have; I never noticed any harm done using the stuff on that.

And sodium chloride is plain old salt
I think this ice melt stuff is more than just plain old salt. I dunno for sure but think so.

Guess I'll spread some out thin on a tarp like I said, let it sit in the boiler room where it's warm all the time, check it in a week or two or three and see if if ever dries out out what.
 
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Old 06-25-17, 04:33 AM
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Lol...I pay way more than that for 25lb bags of cat food or bird seed. It's all relative I guess.
 
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Old 06-25-17, 11:13 AM
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I could use a hair dryer to melt the ice on the deck maybe. Then I wouldn't have to buy the ice melt at all.

Naw...
 
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Old 06-26-17, 09:54 AM
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Desiccants can be recharged but it usually takes quite a bit of heat in the oven.
 
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Old 06-26-17, 10:24 AM
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Your ice melt is probably calcium chloride or some other mixture. Think about it sodium chloride is salt like table salt only coarse. Does the salt in your salt shaker draw moisture from the air?
Why not lay the stuff on a tarp on a hot day in the sun, let it dry, break it up and let it dry more then put it in a sealed container?
All it costs is a tarp if you don't have one and a little time.

You must not have the original package which would tell you the chemical makeup then you could research if there is anything else beneficial to do with it. I doubt it.

The compound could be calcium magnesium acetate. Don't know anything about that except it is a lot less corrosive than salt or CaCl2
CaCl2 is less harmful to plants than salt, The CMA is more benign than either.
 
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Old 06-26-17, 10:36 AM
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Desiccants can be recharged but it usually takes quite a bit of heat in the oven
I researched/googled a little more about it; someone said they had good luck drying the ice melt in a 225-degree oven for about half an hour. So I might try that. Maybe spread it out on a baking sheet and heat it up along with something else at that temperature for that long, so it doesn't seem like I'm using electricity just to dry out a little wet ice melt. Heat it up with something to eat I suppose but can't really think of anything I'd normally warm up to eat at that temperature for that long in the oven....

Why not lay the stuff on a tarp on a hot day in the sun, let it dry, break it up and let it dry more then put it in a sealed container? All it costs is a tarp if you don't have one and a little time.
Yeah I have a tarp, and a little time too. Just need a hot day in the sun to happen; then I might try that...
 
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Old 06-26-17, 11:27 AM
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How wet is it? Like tightcoat said, it probably has calcium chloride in it. That will draw moisture out of the air -- part of what makes it so effective as an ice melter, as it generates heat when it gets wet, and then becomes a liquid brine on the surface. It's also spread on dirt roads to keep dust down, because it draws moisture into the road.

So if you spread it on a tarp, and you have any humidity in the air, it's just going to want to suck in even more moisture from the atmosphere.

Plus, road maintenance agencies actually pre-wet their salts when they apply them on the road, because it helps them stick to the surface and gets them into solution quicker.

Just food for thought. If it were me, and it's not literally sopping wet, I might just seal it up and let it be.
 
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Old 06-26-17, 11:52 AM
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How wet is it?
Not sopping wet, but fairly wet.

Like tightcoat said, it probably has calcium chloride in it.
Yeah by mistake I said it was a sodium chloride blend of stuff in my first post here. Meant to say calcium chloride.

if you spread it on a tarp, and you have any humidity in the air, it's just going to want to suck in even more moisture from the atmosphere
.

Yeah, so I probably won't do that then.^

If it were me, and it's not literally sopping wet, I might just seal it up and let it be.
Yeah, I'll just seal it up by itself and let it be. Good suggestion. I was thinking of trying to dry it so I could go ahead and mix it in with a container of dry stuff I also have (just for the sake of consolidation) but I'll just keep it separate in its own container and seal it up.

Thanks for all the replies.
 
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