What’s makes a hectic, rushed morning even worse? Coming outside to find your windshield frosted over.

Get on the road quickly and safely by using one or more of these defrosting hacks. We’ve also included “don’ts” for each one to help you get precious morning minutes back and prevent damage to your windshield.


Remove the Bulk of Ice

DO use a soft brush or ice scraper to remove caked ice on your windshield. Choose a scraper made of plastic.

DON’T use a metal scraper, key or spatula. Metal items or those not specifically made for windshields may scratch, cut or damage the glass.


Do a Slow Warm

DO start your car and turn on the defroster. Depending on how cold it is, defrosting may take anywhere from 5 to 15 minutes. This will melt any remaining ice and also defog the inside of the glass. You can also turn the heater onto its highest setting to absorb excess moisture from the cab.

DON’T use other heat sources such as a hairdryer or portable heater. Rushing the heating process can easily crack glass as it goes from cold to hot quickly. Your defroster is calibrated for safe heating.


Turn on the A/C

DO turn on your air conditioning. Even though this seems counterintuitive, the A/C function will help dry the air, which is especially helpful when it’s rainy outside. And yes, you can use your heater and A/C at the same time.

DON’T turn on the air recirculation button. Winter air is typically dry, so you’ll want to pull in fresh outside air when defrosting to replace the more humid air inside the vehicle.


Use Water

DO pour cold to lukewarm water on the windshield to help the defrost process along. You can also do this to any frozen-over door handles.

DON’T pour hot water onto a frosty or icy windshield. Just as with other heat sources, this can crack the glass.


Use a De-Icing Solution

DO use a DIY or store-bought spray to de-ice your windshield if you’d rather not scrape. If making your own, mix two parts rubbing (or isopropyl) alcohol with one part water in a spray bottle and spray over the ice. You can keep this solution in your car, as alcohol won’t freeze until about -128 deg F.

DON’T use hot water in the solution.


Frosted windshields are one of winter’s annoying inconveniences, but unfortunately aren’t going anywhere anytime soon. To make sure they don’t ruin your day, use the tips above and remember to not rush them or take shortcuts – taking a couple of extra minutes will keep you and your windshield safe.


This article is furnished by California Casualty. We specialize in providing auto and home insurance to educators, law enforcement officers, firefighters, and nurses. Get a quote at 1.866.704.8614 or www.calcas.com.

California Casualty

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