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How melt ice when you're out of rock salt

Don't have rock salt? Jeff Rossen shares a trick for melting away ice using items you already have in the house.

by Emily Slawek /
A woman wearing googles walks through the snow on January 4, 2018 in Brooklyn, New York.ANGELA WEISS / AFP - Getty Images
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The snow may have stopped for many of us, but the cold weather hasn't. Temperatures on the East Coast have dropped to brutally cold levels, which leads us to our next winter woe: ice.

For most of us, a big bag of rock salt is our go-to solution for eliminating ice from driveways and walkways ... and it also happens to be sold out. All the time. If you haven't been able to get your hands on a bag this week, you are probably panicking — but it turns out, there is another solution, thanks to Jeff Rossen, NBC News National Investigative Correspondent and host of Rossen Reports. You can actually make your own homemade version of rock salt with items you already have in your home, according to Rossen. Here's how to make the ice-melting magic:

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  1. Fill a bucket with hot water
  2. Add a little dish soap
  3. Mix in a decent amount of rubbing alcohol
  4. Mix it together
  5. Pour on snowy or icy surfaces

The combination of the dish soap, rubbing alcohol and hot water helps prevent further icing and speeds up melting process. Once the mixture is poured onto icy or snowy surfaces, it'll bubble up, and melt.

Bonus use: put the mixture in a spray bottle and spritz it on your car windows to melt away ice.

Some other winter hacks you may want know:

Defog your windows:

Get this hack from your cat. Kitty litter happens to be an excellent moisture absorber. Fill up a sock with cat litter — the type with silica crystals (it's blue with white crystals). Put it in your car's dashboard and it'll defog your window in a pinch.

Fall on ice correctly:

The trick to walking on ice is to think like a penguin — seriously. Avoid kicking your legs back with each stride, keep your torso straight and your arms at your side.

Walk on ice correctly:

The trick? Bend your knees, keep your arms away, fall on your side and tuck your head. Read more here.

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