Winter frost is incredibly frustrating to many drivers. A windscreen with frost on is pretty much impossible to see through, and some of the most popular ways to remove ice from the glass can cause scratches and other damage.
As well as this, there is a legal requirement to ensure that you drive a car with a full view of the road and traffic ahead.
Here are some of the best ways to de-ice your windscreen, windows, lights and mirrors, as well as some popular ways that can do more harm than good.
Best: Switch On The Heating
The best place to start is by turning on the ignition and turning up all of the heating. Many cars come with a heated windscreen option which can save you a lot of time.
As frost is caused by super-cooled water vapour in the air, a warm windscreen can quickly avert the issue, which is why some people leave mats or blankets over the windscreen overnight.
Worst: Leaving The Car Running
Some people decide to turn the car on early and just leave it to heat up. Not only is this a wasteful way of warming the car up and wears out the engine, leaving your car unattended is against the law and often against the duty of care in many insurance contracts.
Best: Use De-Icer
There are a lot of de-icers on the market, and it is quite possible to make your own solutions. Typically you will also want your screenwash to have a de-icer solution in it as well.
A de-icer stops water from freezing and creates a new, lower freezing point for your windscreen.
If you want to make your own, mix water with either salt, vinegar or alcohol, as these will all create a new freezing point.
Be careful not to use too much salt, as it can damage the windscreen and corrode the paintwork of your car. Use no more than a teaspoon in your solution and try to avoid overdoing it.
Worst: Use a Kettle
What appears to be the most common-sense solution is one of the worst possible ways to de-ice any part of your car and could make you rely on windscreen replacement services the most.
Whilst it is true that pouring boiling water onto an icy windscreen will melt the ice, the effect of the two extreme temperatures colliding can force a rather large crack in your windscreen.
As well as this, if it spills onto the drive or road and isn’t quickly mopped up it can become a black ice puddle, which could be potentially dangerous to over road users.
Best: Buy A Good Scraper
It is worth paying a little bit extra for a high-quality scraper, as it is designed to protect your windscreen from scratches and make it as easy as possible to get the ice off of your car, especially if you pair it with a good de-icer.
Worst: Use Anything Sharp
When you are trying to de-ice your car, it is tempting to just use any sharp object lying around, such as a knife, spatular, car keys, CDs or anything else with a bit of an edge.
Scratching your windscreen can be expensive to repair and may cause issues when your MOT date comes around.