The Science Behind Safer Dust Control With Magnesium Chloride

Before you can apply fertilizers or chemicals on a single acre of land, chemists, agronomists, and developers run the solutions through a litany of tests that determine not only the efficacy of their products, but its impact on the land and surrounding areas. Heffron Services, taking the same diligent approach to serving our customers as well as protecting our environment, spent years reviewing, testing, and comparing the benefits of the dust control products available in today’s market. The two that stood out in effectiveness and economy were, long-time standard, Calcium Chloride, and Magnesium Chloride, a lesser known, but more secure solution.

magnesium chloride dust controlOpting for The Environmental Choice

Calcium Chloride had been a standard in ice control (think old-time road salt) and winter treatments for years, but after tests done by Purdue University as well as comparisons in local applications; the effectiveness, benefits, durability, and overall environmental compatibility of Magnesium Chloride won out.

Here are 5 simple reasons:

  1. Magnesium Chloride is hygroscopic. This means the mixture applied to your roads for dust control works to bond with the moisture within the dust and dirt on the road. Better moisture control means the solution can be applied earlier in the spring and lasts longer into the dry season.
  2. Magnesium Chloride increases road integrity and protects the environment. Because of the bonding nature of Magnesium Chloride, dirt and gravel roads naturally become more compacted. And, over time, the Magnesium Chloride penetrates the surface adding to roadway stabilization, reducing potholes and wear as well as reducing runoff into waterways and neighboring fields.
  3. magnesium chloride corrosion testMagnesium Chloride is less corrosive than its Calcium-based counterpart. In a Purdue study, scientists for the Indiana Department of Transportation proved Magnesium Chloride was less corrosive than Calcium Chloride. As the photo at the right illustrates, after prolonged exposure to both solutions, the Calcium Chloride solution resulted in increased damage to the concrete. With that, we just ask, “On which road would you rather drive your vehicle?”
  4. Magnesium Chloride has an extremely low carbon footprint. Contrary to other products, , magnesium requires little to no mining or manufacturing to produce. Our product starts as raw liquid from the Great Salt Lake, and after the salt and potash settle out we have magnesium chloride. We don’t even truck it to our distribution locations instead choosing to ship via rail cars to reduce the use of fossil fuels.
  5. Magnesium Chloride is a year-around solution. While the efficacy of both solutions for ice control is comparable, the necessity for Iowa dust control companies to apply in cold-weather demanded a solution that would last. We’ve found that calcium is just not as well suited for Iowa roads. We realized the better answer, the more economical answer and the right answer for our customers was Magnesium Chloride.

While Heffron Services’ business is dust control, our livelihood comes from the surrounding communities we serve. We take pride in the fact that we live in and serve the same community where we started. And making sure that community is safe, secure, and healthy for our customers, their families as well as ours, is why we take such care in the service we provide.

For more information on the products we use for dust control, go to to send us a question or comment.

For a free estimate on dust control for your area, call Kelly or Paul at 515-321-5033.



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