Taking Care With Deicing Salts Can Protect Pavers, According to New Whitepaper

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Experts Provide Homeowners Tips for Caring for Pavers in Wintery Weather

After a while, salt buildup can disintegrate pavers if they are not properly manufactured and maintained

Belgard® Hardscapes provides homeowners with tips for maintaining pavers during freeze season in a new whitepaper on the effects of deicing salt, Caring for Hardscapes in Cold Climates.

While deicing salts can effectively eliminate slippery conditions, they also may adversely affect interlocking concrete pavers, often used in the landscape and walkways, by causing visual and structural damage. However, properly manufactured and maintained pavers can resist the degradation caused by the salts. The whitepaper, prepared by outdoor living expert Belgard Hardscapes, educates homeowners on why damage occurs and how it can be managed.

“I’ve seen salt damage pavers in as little as three years,” said Lou Mangiaracina, vice president of sales in the Northeast for Belgard Hardscapes, which makes pavers for patios, walkways and driveways. “After a while, salt buildup can disintegrate pavers if they are not properly manufactured and maintained. Care is critical during the wintery seasons to ensure your driveways, walkways and patios maintain their beauty for years to come.”

According to the whitepaper, resistance to salts is related directly to a low absorption rate and a high compressive strength, and pavers generally outperform solid concrete and asphalt in both areas. While no paver is truly deicing salt proof, most are deicing salt resistant.

Properly manufactured pavers, such as Belgard’s innovative range of paver and wall products, can resist the effects of deicing salt because Belgard uses aggregate materials that are high strength with low absorption rates with no deleterious material that may contaminate the finished product. Belgard pavers exceed the American Society for Testing Materials’ (ASTM) industry standard for solid concrete interlocking pavers.

Routine maintenance, as with any exterior surface, can also help minimize the effects of deicing salts. The Interlocking Concrete Pavement Institute (ICPI) Technical Committee recommends these guidelines to limit the exposure to deicing:

  • Mix the salt with sand, which is visible and the traction can be felt underfoot
  • Follow the recommended application and don’t over-apply the salt
  • Use deicing salt for melting ice, not for snow removal
  • Remove the ice once it’s loose to avoid salt buildup
  • Wash off the pavers in the spring, since the salt can continue to cause degradation even after the ice or snow has melted

The full whitepaper is available free at http://www.belgard.biz/docs/hardscapes_in_cold_climates.pdf.

About Belgard Hardscapes
Since 1995, Oldcastle® has set the standard for innovative outdoor hardscapes with the Belgard® collection of paver and wall products. Offering a versatile range of styles - in antiqued, classic, and natural textures - premium Belgard products are found in America's first homes and dream homes. When quality matters - Choose Belgard. 1-877-Belgard (235-4273). For additional information and product offerings from Belgard Hardscapes by Oldcastle®, visit http://www.belgard.biz.

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Heather Tamol
Wray Ward
(704) 926-1326
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Mary Beth Sharp
Belgard Hardscapes
(678) 731-8001
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