The Leap To Liquids

The Leap To Liquids

Hesitant about adopting liquids into your anti-icing strategy? New England snowfighter Mark Aquilino offers advice to make a successful switch.

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August 20, 2019

When weighing brine or liquid options as an anti-icing strategy for your snow operation, there’s a lot to consider, such as cost, training, application, and even client reaction. These may seem like overwhelming topics, but Mark Aquilino, president of Outdoor Pride Landscape and Snow Management in Manchester, NH, says they shouldn’t lead a contractor to abandon the technology without first trying.

From smaller-sized peers Aquilino often hears a reluctance to get into liquids because of the perceived high cost associated with getting a brine operation up and running. “It’s much easier when you’re a one- to five-truck operation to get your return on investment than it is when you’re a [larger-sized company],” he says, adding the financial numbers are very attractive.

“You want to innovate and be on the leading edge of service that will benefit the client and add to the bottom line of your business,” he adds.

Aquilino offers some professional insight to assist in making the best decision for your snow and ice management operation.


Don’t Make Excuses

There’s too much equipment to buy. Do I pretreat, post-treat or both? I may still need to use a granular product. Aquilino says excuses like theses are simply questions that need to be research in order to find the answers that relate to your operations. Instead, start small and grow slowly to address each of these issues. “Dip your toe in and look for repeatable successes and then expand upon those (to grow your liquid operation).”


Access Industry Resources
© Outdoor Pride
Outdoor Pride can make 1,200 gal. of brine in 47 min. Click the photo for a larger version
Take advantage of industry associations, publications and online groups that can share available educational material and data on brine use and can direct you to industry professionals and suppliers who will share their knowledge and experiences, Aquilino says. “There’s a ton of great information out there that you can use to make better decisions,” he says. “The resources are there.”

Just Call
Reach out to your peers, or contractors you’ve networked with at industry events, and see if they’d share their experiences or answer some questions. In fact, Aquilino says he’s happy to serve as a peer resource (mark@outdoorpride.com) on liquids. “We’ve learned from our mistakes because we made a number of them along the way,” he says. “We’d be happy to share those [outcomes] with you.”

Mike Zawacki is the editor of Snow Magazine. Reach him at mzawacki@gie.net.