Driving in winter can be very tricky, as everybody knows, with snow-covered and icy roads, that can do some major damage to your car, and be a serious threat to your safety. But, there is another issue car owners face during winter, and it’s even before they get out on the road. It’s the issue of icy driveways and how to get out of one. If you want to have an ice-free driveway, you have to prepare it as soon as temperatures start to drop. But, if you are not able to get rid of the ice, there are some driving techniques and maneuvers that can help you get out more easily.

There are several chemicals that can be used to battle icy driveways. Calcium chloride, sodium chloride, and calcium magnesium acetate are some of the most efficient de-icing chemicals. Some of them are available as flakes, and others in liquid form.

Calcium chloride melts ice thanks to the exothermic reaction it produces. Sodium chloride, otherwise known as rock salt, is recommended at temperatures below 25 degrees Fahrenheit.  Calcium magnesium acetate is as good as all the other chemicals, but it is preferred by most people because it cases less damage to concrete. In general, de-icing chemicals that come in the shape of pellets work better than flake forms, as they have the ability to penetrate ice the fastest.

Aside from using all sorts of chemicals, another way of getting an ice-free driveway is installing an electric driveway heating system. It is more expensive, but far more efficient, and you won’t have to get out on the cold shoveling snow and throwing rock salt every day.

In case you haven’t been able to get your driveway nice and clean in time, you will have to be very careful while driving on it. If you have a front-wheel-drive vehicle, you should try going in reverse, put it in second gear and step on the gas. That should give you enough traction to make it up an icy driveway.