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Why Does Ice Melt Not Work On Black Ice, And How To Get Traction?

walking on ice safety tips

Black ice is a thin layer of ice formed when water freezes on any hard surface, appearing like water but solid ice. Since the ice merges with the color of the road, it is called Black ice.

Black ice is hard to pick or shovel. In most cases, it will melt when the sun comes out; however, there may be times when it won’t. In such times, you will need to resort to other means of melting black ice or using something to gain traction.

If you are looking for walking on ice safety tips, you must remember regular ice melt does not work on black ice. So why does it not work?

  • Black ice forms when the snow melt-off refreezes in extremely thin sheets on the surface.
  • Ice melt is usually applied before a snowstorm. However, using it on black ice will remain like solid granules of pellets. They cannot penetrate solid ice and thus will not melt it.
  • It can melt naturally under the sun, and you can scoop up the ice with a shovel or chip it off with an ice pick. However, it is only possible when the ice has become loose with external heat.
  • Driving on any snowy surface without removing it before will also lead to black ice formation. Thus, ice melt cannot be of any help either.
  • If you are in a shaded area without any sunlight, there are higher chances of seeing black ice reappear.

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What Can You Do?  

  • Shoes 

Get the best shoes for walking on ice that are sturdy with spikes or broad grooves. These shoes help you form a better grip on black ice and help you walk better. They are available in any store near you and even online!

  • Shovel   

Shovel the snow as soon as a snowstorm passes. Shoveling excess snow helps understand how deep the snow is and makes space for the vehicles to pass. But you must apply an ice melt to avoid the snow melt-off from refreezing.  

  • Traction 

Use eco-friendly traction agents that will help you walk on black ice without slipping. Walk on Ice is a traction formula that builds immense grip and helps walk-in harsh icy conditions. It is not only pet-safe and kid-safe; it does not harm the natural vegetation or ecosystem. It is one of the safest traction agents in the market.

Get ready for winter with Walk On Ice instant traction on snow and ice


A few key takeaways include investing in the best shoes for walking on ice and keeping an excellent traction product such as Walk on Ice handy. Black ice cannot melt quickly because it is clear, and you see the colon because of the pavement colon underneath it. Water refreezing on the roadway can cause black ice to form and thus makes it difficult to clear.

Other Ice Melt Products

Safe Paw

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Safe Thaw

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