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Snow Melt Systems

"Snow, Ice Go Away, With a Snow Melt System Today."

The beauty of Snow Melt Systems

Northern Illinois is prone to snow and ice…in abundance, and often.

Big surprise, right? Well, surprise or not, you can do away with the need to shovel or plow your concrete driveway and walkways with a snow melt system from Ridgeway Home Systems.
Snow and ice melt systems, which are basically radiant heat sources, are designed to eliminate ice buildup and eliminate the need to use harmful de-icing materials.

Advantages of Snow and Ice Melting Systems

Our snow and ice melting systems are maintenance free and are safe to use year-round on exterior slabs. Ice and snow melting systems may be installed into new concrete slabs or retrofitted into existing slabs. They prevent damage to concrete caused by snow removal equipment and the corrosive nature of snow melting chemicals. They also eliminate the need to plow and shovel, thereby saving a considerable amount of time, hassle and money.

The Two Types of Snow Melting Systems

Hydronic and electronic systems are the two types we recommend and install most often. Both have heating elements embedded into the cement slab. Both have sensors that detect outdoor air temperatures and moisture, and both have a power source and a controller which ties the heating element, the sensor and the power source together.

Hydronic Snow Melt Systems

Hydronic snow melt systems consist of a tubing heating element that is closed-loop, typically constructed of synthetic rubber of polymer. The tubing, which ranges from ½ to ¾ inches in diameter, circulates a combination of hot water and antifreeze (similar to the mixture found in car radiators). It is flexible enough to bend in various layout patterns.

Hydronic snow melt systems generally offer a long service life, as they resist chemicals and corrosion. They also do not become too soft at high temperatures and too brittle at low temperatures, thereby extending their service life.

Electric Snow Melt Systems

Electric snow melt systems use hot wires instead of hot water to heat concrete slabs. The wires are surrounded by layers of insulation and a protective PVC or poly-olefin outer jacket. The flexible cables measure 1/8 to ¼ of an inch in diameter, and may be cut to the desired length to suit various layouts.

The cable of an electric snow melt system, in order to heat the surface of the concrete effectively, should deliver about 36 to 50 watts of heating power per square foot of slab surface. Homeowners may need to upgrade their electric service panel to accommodate the added power requirements, or may need to install a separate circuit to supply the power needed to operate an electric snow melt system.

Although snow and ice melting systems represent a substantial upfront investment, they pay for themselves while providing added convenience and safety…winter in, and winter out.