Now in use for more than 75 years, there are countless benefits of calcium chloride that repeatedly convince highway departments to continue its usage.
“Fines” or the small particles on the surface of the roadway are stirred up by wind and traffic and lost to the air. Not only does this process cause hazardous and annoying dust clouds to kick up on unpaved roads, but the loss of fines also will lead to a less stable road surface and will eventually cause deterioration of the larger aggregates that require the fines to hold the road together. With the use of calcium chloride, the surface can be stabilized as it will enhance the binding of the fine particles. This presets dust clouds and also keeps the road in good working order for a long time to come.
Most highway departments will see a loss of dollars when they have to replace the lost materials of an unpaved road. This is usually a serious factor when considering the depletion of local deposits of a surfacing material like gravel. However, calcium chloride can be applied to an unpaved surface to coat the fines and aggregates. This will bind them together and help keep the original materials in their place. This will reduce the need to replace materials, saving money.
How much blading a road needs to have its surface reshaped and patch directly relates to the extent of the deterioration of the surface. A road that is severely deteriorated will require more extensive blading while a stable and consolidated road surface will require light, minimal blading. Since calcium chloride binds the fines and aggregates to each other, the road will be more stable and compact which means it will require less blading.
When it comes to unpaved highway maintenance, the elimination of dust is perhaps appreciated more than anything else by the driving public and the taxpayers who work and live along the unpaved roadways. When calcium chloride is applied for dust control, the letters concerning dust problems will be replaced with thank-you notes about the smooth and dust-free surface.
Compare any two geographical areas and you’re unlikely to find any with the same material composition in their road surfaces. However, proper gradation and calcium chloride can be used on any unpaved surface no matter the material. It works on earth, cinders, gravel, sand, bluestone, shale, limestone, clay, graded crushed stone, shell, and other regional materials too.
Not only is dust a nuisance, is can also be a hazard on unpaved roads. The billowing clouds of dust will reduce visibility and blind most motorists for a short amount of time, which leads to dangers with unseen washboard, potholes, and similar problems. Since calcium chloride can penetrate the road surface to bind the fines and aggregates to one another, it’s able to reduce the formation of not only dust, but also of potholes. That makes for a smoother ride for everyone. Plus, homeowners can use it to keep ice to a minimum around their property.