3 Biggest Mistakes to Avoid When Defrosting Your Windshield

defrost windshield
Foto: CC0 / Pixabay / uknowgayle

Having to defrost your windshield is one of the less enjoyable aspects of winter. How can you do this without wasting energy or polluting the local environment? Here we outline the best ways to defrost your windshields sustainably.

Big Defrosting Mistakes To Avoid

Morning frost is beautiful, but can be a pain when it comes to your car.
Morning frost is beautiful, but can be a pain when it comes to your car.
(Foto: CC0 / Pixabay / rikkerst)

1. Boiling Water: As good as an idea it might seem at first, don’t be tempted to pour boiling water over your windshield and car windows. The sudden temperature change is certain to cause cracks and the boiling water can also cause damage to paintwork by melting the protective top layers.

2. De-Icer Spray: One of the most common methods used to defrost a car quickly in the US is de-icer spray. Unfortunately, de-icer is usually made up of harsh chemical additives that are damaging to the environment, and worse still, it can fatal to animals and humans if ingested – even in small amounts.

3. Car Heater: If you are interested in doing your small part in protecting the environment, you’ll also want to avoid blasting your car heater at your windshield and rear window, as this involves running the engine when you’re not driving, thus creating more air pollution and needlessly wasting gas in the process. 

Luckily, there are some simple eco-friendly alternatives that will defrost windshields easily and don’t involve the use of chemicals or wastefully running your car engine.

Need an eco-friendly glass cleaner? Check out the following and learn to make your own at home: Homemade Window Cleaner: DIY Glass Cleaner for a Streak-free Shine

Defrosting Your Windshield: The Eco-Friendly Way

Defrosting your windshield can be done without harsh chemicals or wasted energy.
Defrosting your windshield can be done without harsh chemicals or wasted energy.
(Foto: CC0 / Pixabay / kaboompics)

1. Use A Plastic Scraper

Sometimes the simplest solutions are the best, and you can’t get much simpler than using a scraper for defrosting windshields and windows in the colder months.

You can try going down the DIY route and scrape frost from windows using an old CD case for example,  but car scrapers are designed specifically with one purpose in mind, are cheap to buy, and should last a long time. Improvising with other items could scratch your windows, causing you further problems down the line.

2. White Vinegar

If you know that it will be below freezing overnight, try spraying your windshield with a mixture of three parts water and one part white vinegar. while the mixture will not melt ice, it can help ice from forming in the first place. Be careful not to use too much white vinegar though, as this can damage your car’s paint and the rubber seals around the exterior of your windshield.

3. Salt

Another easy way to defrost your windshield is to mix one tablespoon of salt with two cups of room temperature water. Using a clean sponge or cloth, apply the mixture to your windshield and the salt will melt the ice instantly.

4. Alcohol

By mixing two parts rubbing alcohol into one part room temperature water in a spray bottle, you will create one of the most reliable methods of removing frost. Spray the solution on your windshield and simply watch as the ice slides off your windshield immediately.

5. Dish Soap

Take a bottle of 70% isopropyl alcohol, add in a few drops of biodegradable dish soap, then apply liberally to your windshield using a spray bottle. Rinse or wipe off the excess once the job is done so as to not damage your car’s paint or window seals.

6. Warm Rice Bags

They require a bit of effort, but warm rice bags can also help defrost your windshield. Just put some uncooked rice in a heavy-duty zip-lock bag and microwave for 30 seconds. Rub the bag across the inside of the windshield while seated inside, this will warm the glass and the ice will melt on the outside surface. 

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