How dirty is your car this winter? I know the answer, and don't feel bad, mine is horrible also.

It's impossible to keep it clean this time around. With frequent precipitation, the streets are a mess everyday. Plus it's always just too cold to wash your car.

The real problem that you are noticing is it's dirty with more salt than dirt. The cars are covered with yucky white residue. So what's with all the salt on the streets?

We talked with Galynn Huber, the Street/ Fleet Manager for Sioux Falls, South Dakota Public Works. Huber says so far 10,000 tons of salt has been used in the city so far. Sounds like a lot, but it's actually the normal amount for this point of the winter.

The problem has been how often the streets have had to be treated because of this type of winter we are having. Huber says, 'Each storm has to be treated separately. Each 1" storm gets treated just like a 6" storm would.'

All the small day after day snowfalls have brought out more salt applications keeping the road you're driving on saturated with the safety stuff. Yes, that's the key word here, 'safety'.

Huber made a very clear statement in talking with us saying, 'My goal is to keep the roads safe during the winter months in Sioux falls, SD. If I have to treat with a half inch of snow, I will.'

A decision is made at every snowfall whether to apply salt. If it's extremely cold, an application has to be done because of the freezing factor. And with the bitter cold this year, that's been the norm.

So it hasn't been more salt, but instead it's been a small amount more often. This has kept you driving in the stuff almost everyday. And that explains why your car is white this year.

We salute the city for keeping our roads good for driving. But now take concern for your car.

We talked with Randy Dump, manager of Billion Chevrolet Body Shop. Randy pointed out the real concern is underneath your car.

'Make sure to wash the under body very regularly. There are components under there that will rust and it could cause you some problems,' says Dump. He told us to choose a car wash that offers the under body wash and use it as often as you can.

Salt 2
Anthony Wright
Salt 3
Anthony Wright

And just for fun, we asked Galynn Huber were all the salt comes from that the cities use. He told us that most of it comes from Kansas. They have 3 mines there that supply the entire United States. It is transported here by truck. And sometimes supply can be disrupted by demand from the East coast, but not the case this year.


More From KXRB