Winter salt management - snow and ice clearing tips

Download or print PDF file for sidewalk clearing tips

Download the Sidewalk Clearing Tips.

image of person thinking about ideaUse salt wisely.

  • Chloride impacts water. Salt and many de-icers, including products labeled environmentally friendly and 100% natural, contain chloride.

  • Salt works best between 0 and -10 Celsius. 

  • A little salt goes a long way. In many cases, about one tablespoon of salt for a one-metre square area is all you need

image of shovel pushing snowShovel or plow the snow first.

  • Clear the snow as soon as you can so a snowy sidewalk doesn't become an icy one

  • Don't use salt or de-icers to melt snow

  • Store unsalted snow where it won't melt on to paved areas

  • Don't shovel snow onto the road to comply with local bylaws

image of containerTreat icy patches only.

  • Reduce the risk of water freezing on driveways and sidewalks by managing where rainwater and snow melt drains

    • repair leaky downspouts and eaves troughs
    • direct downspouts away from walkways and driveways
    • clean eaves troughs of leaves and other debris
    • keep storm drains clear to remove snow melt
  • Sprinkle salt or de-icer on icy areas only and give it time to work before clearing ice

  • Remove ice with a steel ice chopper

  • Follow salt or de-icer directions for working temperature and application rate

  • Create traction with grit, non-clumping kitty litter or sand to reduce the potential to slip


Curb the salt. Salt impacts our water. We all have a role to play.