How to De-Ice Your Car

Ever find yourself standing over your car staring at a fresh sheet of ice, from that fresh Englewood snowfall, trying to figure out the best way to make the windshield actually visible again? The last thing you want to do is stand out in the freezing cold chipping away for 20 minutes worrying about being on time to work while waiting for it to thaw. Well, lucky for you we have some of the best tips and tricks for de-icing your windshield quickly so you can get on with your day and stay warm.

The first trick is to start your car immediately, which you probably already know. Turn on the defrost setting as high and as hot as it can go, and let that start running. Obviously, this is a trick we all use, but it can still take some time for the defrost to warm up the windshield enough to the point you can break up the ice manually. If you don’t have the time to do that and don’t want to sit in the car waiting, there are other things you can do to speed along the process.

Next, you’ll want to apply a de-icer. This can be something you purchase from a store, or you can simply make your own. The kind you get from a store can be pricey, so here are two options you can make yourself. The first is the isopropyl alcohol and water mixture. Just grab a spray bottle and fill it with two parts 70% isopropyl alcohol to one part water. Then use this mixture to spray on the ice while your car is heating up.

The second mixture you can make at home is a saltwater water de-icing spray. Again, use a spray bottle, fill with water and add a few spoonfuls of salt until the water is well saturated with the salt. For this technique, you can either use table salt or road salt, but road salt works better. It’s also important to note that with the saltwater solution you need to be careful about keeping it on the windshield and avoiding other parts of your car, so you don’t cause any corrosion.

For both options, let the mixture sit on the ice for a minute or so and then start scraping/chipping away. You’ll be surprised how the ice begins to melt away and how much easier it is to remove at this point.

Now you can start scraping the ice with less force. Turning on your wipers will help clear the leftover ice once you’ve warmed up the car and applied the de-icing spray, and will help save your wipers as well. Note that you should always store your de-icer at room temperature though, and not in your care.

These tips should save you time and energy so you can hopefully stay in bed a bit longer on the next snowy morning rather than spending time outside chipping away at the sheet of ice on your car. As always, you can count on Thompson Automotive for car care, maintenance, and repairs — call us or stop by our Englewood auto shop today!