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Defrosting your car

Frosty Windscreen

It’s been a while since we’ve seen him, but it’s safe to say that Jack Frost is back – and he’s leaving an impression on our cars again.

With frosty mornings returning, more and more of us are having to tend to our windscreens because in simple terms, we can’t see out of them!

But despite many of us having years of experience in defrosting our cars, some of us still get it wrong. In our latest blog, we look at the preventative measures we can take - and a guide to defrosting safely and effectively (and boiling water isn’t one of them!).

Some tips to stop frost settling on your windscreen:

  • Cover your windshield with rubber bath mats or a folded sheet the night before and use your wipers to keep it in place.
  • As an added insurance policy, use de-icer the evening before to make your life even easier.
  • Don’t forget your wing mirrors either: Cover them with carrier bags the night before and secure them with rubber bands to stop them from freezing too.
  • Another great method is to invest in a can of de-icer and a scraper. Spray the de-icer all over the windscreen and then scrape off the melting ice with the ice scraper. Don't be tempted to use a credit card or a CD case, as you could end up scratching your windscreen.
  • Most good screen washes also contain de-icer. This can help clear the ice from your windscreen and prevent your wash bottle and spray nozzles from freezing.

What not to do:

  • Don’t use newspaper as it's too thin and can freeze onto the windscreen.
  • Don’t use boiling water or a scraper - one can just freeze again and the other can scratch your screen. You don't want to damage your car. In addition, the water may spill on the ground and freeze, forming a dangerous patch of ice.
  • Sitting in your car with the engine running and fan on (while you wait for the heat of your car to de-ice the windows) not only takes a long time but wastes fuel and increases wear on the engine.

Keeping your car safe from thieves:

Sadly, opportunistic thieves come out to play when commuters are defrosting their windscreens and there have been reports of numerous thefts across the country.
To car thieves, frosty mornings are a gift, so always be in close proximity to your car and don’t leave it running out of sight for a few minutes in the morning, whatever you do.

Some more tips to bear in mind when defrosting your car:

1. As we’ve alluded to, stay with your car all the time - if you must go back indoors switch off and lock the vehicle.
2. Do not drive off until all of the glass is clear
3. Remember not to leave wipers in 'auto' when frost is expected - if wipers are frozen to the glass the wiper motor could be damaged. Don’t try to force frozen wipers off the glass
In conclusion, some simple common sense and a bit of extra planning is all that is needed to beat Jack Frost and save valuable time in the mornings which, let’s face it, we could all do with!