Lovely weather we’re having here lately, isn’t it? Almost everyone is getting a little taste of Winter right now. Whether you live in the Great White North, or you rarely see snow, it can be a real nuisance to wake up to an iced-over car in the morning. Here in Canada, we should know better and always be prepared for these things, but we still find ourselves with icy windshields and cars that need cleaning off at least a few times every year.
With a little bit of knowledge though, and some clever tricks, you can save yourself the pain of having to tackle the time consuming task of de-icing and de-snowing your car in the cold.
First of all, I have to tell you that I took these photos during the middle of a raging storm, with snow blowing off the fields and literally zero visibility. I wanted to take a few pics to set the mood, but I couldn’t exactly see what I was shooting, so I just stuck my camera out and snapped! So you get what you get, but as you can see, we’ve had some serious snow lately. 🙂 This was after Chris had already gone out and shoveled that morning.
On to some tips!
Here are some great things to do if you find snowy, freezing weather heading your way.
1) Cover your windows! Using car mats, carpet remnants, or sheets of plastic to cover your car windows will prevent them from getting any frost, snow, or ice on them in the first place. For the side windows, open the doors and let the plastic drape over the windows before closing the doors again. This takes a bit of planning the night before, but you’ll sure be happy when you wake up in the morning!
2) Another use for vinegar! If you spray or wipe vinegar over your windows after you park your car, it will prevent ice from forming in moderately cold temps. You can also use it to mist over a light frost to help it melt faster.
3) Protect your wipers! One of the most frustrating parts of an icy car is trying to chip away at the ice around your windshield wipers. The car’s defroster rarely reaches the wipers too, so warming your car up in advance of needing it doesn’t help either. Not a problem! Simply place an old pair of socks over your wipers after you park, and you’ll be good to go no matter what the weather brings!
4) Get mad! If your car is really covered in pure ice, give the hood of your car a good smack with a flat palm to help crack the ice and give yourself a place to start scraping. When removing ice and snow, remember not to use shovels or other sharp objects to remove the ice, as this will easily scratch your paint. Only use scrapers and brushes specifically meant for clearing ice and snow from cars.
5) Water it down! Another thing you can do to try to melt ice or frost is to simply fill a bucket with water and toss it over your windshield. This will either completely melt the ice, or will at least make it easy to scrape or brush off. The trick here is to make sure that the water is just luke warm. If you use boiling water, you risk cracking your windows because of the rapid change in temperature.
6) A smarter way to park your car! If temperatures will just be getting a little bit chilly, chances are the sun’s rays in the morning may be able to do all the work for you. If you can park your car facing East (where the sun rises), then the frost on your windshield may just be melted for you before you even need to think about scraping!
So those are a few of my favorite tips! Of course, my very favorite would be to clean out the garage and use that, but I don’t see that happening any time soon around here. 🙂 What are your favorite tips for keeping your car ice-free? Did I leave anything out?
Courtenay Hartford is the author of creeklinehouse.com, a blog based on her adventures renovating a 120-year-old farmhouse in rural Ontario, Canada. On her blog, Courtenay shares interior design tips based on her own farmhouse and her work as founder and stylist of the interior photography firm Art & Spaces. She also writes about her farmhouse garden, plant-based recipes, family travel, and homekeeping best practices. Courtenay is the author of the book The Cleaning Ninja and has been featured in numerous magazines including Country Sampler Farmhouse Style, Better Homes and Gardens, Parents Magazine, Real Simple, and Our Homes.