If you have ever had to salt a walk or driveway by hand, you know that it is not only tedious but that the salt is also tough on your skin. You may want to upgrade to a salt spreader if you are salting parking lots or roads or if you have a larger drive. These save you time by casting out salt more efficiently. But, before you drop hundreds or thousands of dollars on a spreader, consider the benefits of a salt spreader rental.
Buying a salt spreader is a risky and unnecessary expense for most people though it may be a good investment for some. Yet, with rental, you do not have to spend as much, and you do not need to pray for a snowy winter to feel like you invested your money wisely. Another great benefit to renting is that you can try out different types of spreaders in real-life situations to find out which one works perfectly for your purposes.
You may want to think about whether you want a walk-behind salt spreader or a tailgate spreader when picking the best salt spreader rental. For spreaders that are mounted to your truck, car, ATV, UTV, lawn tractor, or dump truck, you need to make sure you get the right mounting equipment.
The decision on the right salt spreader rental will ultimately vary based on the kind of vehicle you have and the size of the area you want to plow. If you have a small space, the walk-behind or hand-held spreaders may work for you. However, if you want to de-ice large parking lots or if you plan on using the spreader for commercial use, you might want something more heavy duty.
Let’s take a closer look at your options:

Handheld Salt Spreaders  

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Steps, small walks, and other small areas can be well-served by handheld spreaders. They cast salt better than using a cup to sprinkle the salt, and they save your hands from drying out. There are a few downsides to the handheld salt spreaders. They can only cast fine deicing materials, which tend to melt quickly. Also, they tend to carry less than ten pounds of salt.

Walk-Behind Spreaders  

Most, average-sized driveways will just need a walk-behind salt spreader rental. At first glance, it is easy to mistake walk-behind spreaders for fertilizer spreaders. The main difference is that walk-behind salt spreaders are made with more durable materials that hold up to harsh weather conditions.
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Again, like the handheld spreaders, walk-behinds work better with fine deicing materials. However, unlike the handhelds, these spreaders can carry anywhere from 40 to 160 pounds of salt. Some can even hold bulk salt and rock materials.

Tailgate and Tow-Behind Spreaders  

Both contractors and homeowners can benefit from tailgate and tow-behind spreaders depending on the size. The type of vehicle you want to use your spreader with will determine what spreader is best for you.

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You can hitch a tow-behind spreader to the back of your lawn tractor if you are already using it as a snow plow. This will allow you to salt your drive as you plow it. That will help you complete your job quickly and have you back inside by the fire in no time.
Depending on the size of the spreader, tailgate and tow-behind spreaders can cast either coarse or fine deicing materials. Coarser materials tend to be more affordable than fine ice melt, and they also melt slower.

Municipal and In-Bed Spreaders  

If you are a contractor with a subdivision, parking lot, or other big areas to salt, you may want to consider a heavy duty municipal or in-bed spreader. Municipal spreaders are the larger of the two. They both fit into dump trucks or truck beds. Contractors can salt as they plow with this option. Municipal and in-bed salt spreaders can be electric or hydraulic.
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There are two systems these spreaders can come in: pintle-driven or auger-driven systems. A certain amount of salt is caught at a time by the corkscrew-like auger-driven system. The auger then brings the salt to the spinner. On the other hand, the salt goes to the spinner via a conveyor belt with the pintle-driven system.
Since fine deicing materials would just spill through the large openings, neither system can handle these materials. With that said, pintle systems can handle gravel and other much coarser materials than auger-drive systems. However, there are not precision machines. When using them, you need to be careful of your surroundings, particularly if you are casting gravel.

Under-Tailgate Spreaders  

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Contractors with dump trucks should consider under-tailgate salt spreaders. The truck itself holds the sand or salt, and the spreader is mounted on the back bumper of the truck. These tend to hold more than municipal or in-bed salt spreaders though the precise amount you can carry will depend on the size of your truck. Under-tailgate spreaders can utilize electrical or hydraulic systems.

Other Factors to Consider when Looking for a Salt Spreader Rental 

You need to know the GAWR rating of your truck or car if you plan on fitting a salt spreader to it. This will be key in figuring out how big of a spreader you can handle. GAWR stands for the gross axle weight rating and refers to the maximum weight each axle of your vehicle can support. This number cannot be changed since it is set by the manufacturer of the vehicle.
You can also generally choose between stainless steel or polyethylene spreader bodies. Polyethylene frames are preferred by those who want a non-corrosive spreader that is cheaper and lighter. Though stainless steel is still very good at not corroding, it is more corrosive than polyethylene. It is also more expensive and heavier, but it can take accessories like vibrators, which keep the hoppers from clogging.


No matter what salt spreader fits your needs best, we have what you need and more. Please contact us today for more information on our wide selection of salt spreader rentals. We hope you enjoyed our guide, and we look forward to hearing from you!

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