Salt in the ice?

Anyone ever try that to keep from having to go buy more ice?
I was talking to a buddy this weekend and he brought it up. Said the salt can refreeze the ice melt. Or so he read somewhere.
My son and I are going to the Ozarks for about 5 days and I don't want to have to go back to town to get ice. And I darn sure aint shelling out 4 or 500 for a electric fridge. Ice makers are cheap but it seems I will have to have it running all day to make a meaningful amount of ice.
If the salt wont keep us going for 5 days, are there other cheap options?
 

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jadmt

Well-known member
Doesn't regular ice last longer than dry ice?
Yes as a general rule. There are techniques to make it last longer but i never had much luck with it. Buy an arb or dometic cooler cry once and then enjoy camping without ever worrying about ice again.
 

180out

Member
the salt works real good. lowers the temp down so cold it will freeze up your beer and soda. pack up your cooler with everything, add ice, sprinkle rock salt over the top, seal and travel. enjoy
 

verdesard0g

Search and Rescue first responder
I have jugs of salt water in my cooler, no bags of melting ice for me. The temp of my home freezer is 0*F. Ice from the store is only about 32. The salt water jugs do get much colder than plain water. The only drawback that I see is not being able to drink the water from the jugs when they do melt lol.
 

Verkstad

Raggarkung
Said the salt can refreeze the ice melt. Or so he read somewhere.
Suggest you review how the chemical process of salt upon ice works.

When you loaded your cooler, it contains a fixed amount of heat energy.
You can let that energy change state at its natural pace. Or add salt to force that change to faster pace.
Ice melts because it absorbs heat. Adding salt depresses ice freezing temperature, essentially forces ice to melt.
The heat for that comes from somewhere, the surrounding melted water, beercans and so on.

That scenario is like driving your near empty car at full speed to reach the gas station before running out of fuel.

Btw,
Ice freezer at the store is about 15°F.
It needs to stay cold enough to remain dry.
 
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FJR Colorado

Explorer
Suggest you review how the chemical process of salt upon ice works.
When you loaded your cooler, it contains a fixed amount of heat energy.
You can let that energy change state at its natural pace. Or add salt to force that change to faster pace.
Ice melts because it absorbs heat. Adding salt depresses ice freezing temperature, essentially forces ice to melt. The heat for that comes from somewhere, the surrounding melted water, beercans and so on.

That scenario is like driving your car at full speed to reach the gas station before running out of fuel.

Btw,
Ice freezer at the store is about 15°F.
It needs to stay cold enough to remain dry.
Basically, like an old-time hand cranked ice cream maker. Ice packed with rock salt to freeze cream/custard while being churned.
 

dreadlocks

Well-known member
Go on a trip to buy more ice, or shell out $500+ for an electric fridge.. pick one, either the avoided hassle and expense is worth a fridge, or we're all dumb yuppies who cant go fetch more ice.. there's really no middle ground here.. If all of us could sprinkle some magic crystals into our cooler and get a week no problem then fridges would not be so popular on these forums.
 

SquirrelZ

Member
OK, time for some trivia that is sorta on the subject....

Mr Fahrenheit, who devised a temperature scale still used in the US and a few other equally backwards parts of the world, arbitrarily set the lowest point on his scale as 0. That was the coldest temperature that he recorded, which was frozen salt water. He set 100 as the temperature of the human body..... unfortunately his estimate/measurement was a bit off.

So the moral of the story is that salty water will freeze at a lower temperature and therefore have more calories available to cool other objects.
 

NatersXJ6

Explorer
I nominate this for most confusing quasi-scientific discussion since “pulleys increase pulling” or something along those lines.

basically: freezing salt water makes very cold ice, it also goes back to water at a lower temp, so the gain may be minimal. Putting salt ON your ice melts it... ask anyone in the rust belt.

What keeps ice solid longer is not opening the cooler and not putting stuff in warm and not putting the cooler in the sun and not talking about it to third parties and not referring to it in unfavorable terms and not eating popcorn on Sunday afternoon and something about Newton.
 

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AbleGuy

Too Much Fun Club, founder
bring an extra cooler. fill it with blocks of ice, run duct tape all around the edge of the top. don't open it until the 3rd day of your trip.
And if one was really concerned about making it last, protect the temperature further by wrapping that second cooler with insulated reflective bubble wrap* or even cut to fit and tape up the seams of some foam insulation board wrapped around all the sides.

(*we use that technique for boosting our cheap soft sided cooler when we’re car camping)
 

workerdrone

Fulltimer
I think you just want colder ice - there's ice, then there's really cold ice - it will last longer than the slushy stuff you buy from the outdoor vending cooler.

Really cold massive blocks of ice FTW, salted ice water if you want to set a record cooling down a can of beer perhaps

You want the coldest ice possible to start with, I think the disconnect is people thinking that once water freezes it is now ice at 32 degrees and doesn't get any colder
 
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