Winter. Some years are worse than others, but they’re all a nuisance. Icy windshields, frozen locks, frosted and fogged up windows…
Yeah. Winter weather sucks. But because it’s not going anywhere (and neither are we) we’re always on the lookout for new ways to make it more manageable. Here are some lesser known but very effective tricks we’ve picked up along the way.
Windshields Only Work If You Can See Through Them
If you live in a colder region, over the years you’re going to spend countless hours scraping your windshield. It’s well worth your while to invest in a good windshield scraper. If you find yourself without one, a credit card can work as an ice scraper in a pinch.
Tricks For Deicing Your Windshield
- Raise wipers at night to keep them from freezing to the windshield
- Use a mixture of three parts vinegar, one part water in a spray bottle to make window deicer. Never use hot water to melt ice, the sudden change of temperature can cause the glass to shatter.
- Park your vehicle with the windshield facing east, let the first morning light to deice your windshield for you
- Bonus: Put gallon-sized bags secured with rubber bands over your side mirrors at night to prevent them from them from from icing over
Fog-proofing Your Windows
You’ve taken care of the ice on the outside, but there’s still fog plaguing the inside of your windows. Take heart, we have tricks for managing and preventing your windows fogging up. Best of all, these will come in handy year round!
- Shaving cream is a great, inexpensive alternative to commercial defoggers. It has many of the same ingredients at a fraction of the price. Apply it to the inside of your windows and wipe it off. It’ll leave an invisible fog-resistant layer to the inside of your windows at a fraction the cost of commercial defoggers.
- Didn’t fog-proof your windows? Keep a (clean) chalkboard eraser in your car. It’ll quickly clear fog without leaving behind a smudgy mess.
- Before you turn your car off at night, turn off the heater and open the windows and let cold air in. This will cycle out the moisture from your breathing, replacing it with dryer air.
- Don’t leave water bottles or drinks in your car; the water will evaporate, forming mist that will turn to frost on the inside of your windows.
- Fill a sock with kitty litter and keep it in your car, under the seat. It’ll absorb moisture, helping to prevent frost from forming. As an added bonus it’ll absorb odor.
- Car still fogged up? Run the air conditioner for a while. It’s one of the best ways to defog your car.
Quickly Melt Through Frozen Locks & Doors
It’s not fun being locked out of your car. To help keep this from happening in the first place, spray WD-40 into your keyholes before the winter. It’ll keep ice from forming.
To keep your doors from freezing out, you can apply cooking spray to the cracks of your doors and the rubber seals. This way, water that melts during the day will run off rather than resting in the cracks to refreeze.
- Use a match or lighter to heat your key. Gently push it into the lock, melting the ice as you go—but be careful, the key can get hot!
- If you don’t have a lighter but a straw, use that to blow hot air directly into the lock. Your warm breath should be able to melt the ice so you can unlock the doors.
- Use a squirt of hand sanitizer to thaw out frozen locks and door handles. The alcohol should quickly melt the ice.
Some Safety Tips for Surviving Winter
Headlights are one of the most important safety features you have in winter. Snow, dirt, bugs and grime can dramatically reduce the brightness of your lights. Use a mild abrasive cleaner such as Brasso or toothpaste to clean headlights. Toothpaste works just as well as more expensive commercial cleaners!
Be sure to winterize your car. The most important thing is staying on the road, and key to that is having good winter tires. Schedule an appointment today and we’ll give your car a full winter checkup. We can give you a free quote on winter tires, too!