PITTSBURGH (KDKA) – With all the cold, snow and ice lately, people are looking for salt.
But how do you know which kind to get?

Doug Satterfield at Rolliers Hardware in Mt. Lebanon shared a little ice melting 101.

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“Rock Salt is an inexpensive product to use, but you tend to have to use more,” Satterfield said.

He also said it won’t work in lower temperatures, noting that it’s less active below 15 degrees.

So what about magnesium chloride?

“The nice thing about mag chloride is that it leaves a little residue behind after it finishes melting and it leaves a residue back and continues to be active for a period of time,” said Satterfield.

And how do those compare with calcium chloride?

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“The reason cal chloride is so popular is because it melts at negative 25 degrees,” said Satterfield.

Satterfield also says the pellet form of calcium chloride is important.

“These little round pellets will actually bore holes, drill holes in your ice and actually cause the ice to crack apart,” he said.

KDKA took all three forms of salt and did an experiment to see how they tested.

Turns out calcium chloride worked the fastest, but the rock salt was also holding its own.

After two hours, the calcium chloride and rock salt wiped out the ice, with the magnesium chloride a distant third.

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