As the coldness of winter really starts to close in on us, it is so important that you know how to properly and thoroughly de-ice your car to ensure the highest levels of safety possible.
Driving in cold and icy conditions dangerous enough, without the added factor of a half-defrosted windscreen! Did you know it is illegal to drive with obstructions such as snow and ice on your windscreen? It is also important to remember that ice can cover lights and mirrors, so it is imperative you check these as well before setting off on your journey.
You may also find that your windscreen wipers have frozen when conditions are cold and icy. Make sure you don’t force them up from the window, and instead ensure all ice has been removed so they are able to work properly. De-icer liquid can also be useful in these situations if you are in a rush.
However if you are in a rush, a very important point to remember is that you should never pour boiling water over your windscreen to get rid of the ice as this increases the risk of the glass cracking.
Everyone may choose to de-ice their vehicles in different ways. The most common way is using an ice scraper and de-icer liquid. If this is your chosen method, here are a few tips to make it a little easier and more efficient!
If you choose to use a de-icer liquid, spray it onto your window starting at the top. This will slowly make its way down the screen as it begins to melt the ice and can also help you to use less product, make it last longer and save money! Who wouldn’t want that?
Using scraper is also a great way to help get those last little bits of ice that the liquid may have missed. If you prefer to only use a scraper and not a de-ice liquid, try starting from the top of the screen straight down to the bottom. Make sure that you get as much ice off the windscreen as possible and never consider just de-icing the drivers’ side. As mentioned before, it is actually illegal to drive with obstructions such as ice on the windscreen as you will not have a clear view of the road ahead and thus will be putting yourself and other drivers in danger.
If you choose to use your car engine to de-ice the screen and warm your car up, there are a few points you need to remember! Firstly, and most importantly, you must not leave your car unattended; it is illegal to leave a car unattended as well as having obstructions on your windscreen. This includes even if your car is right outside on your driveway. Additionally, make sure you do not leave your keys are left in the ignition. Even if you are standing close by and defrosting your car, it is still possible that your car could be stolen and this is definitely not what you want first thing in the morning!
An overall summary…
-Never pour boiling water over your windscreen as it can cause it to crack
-Spray your de-icer liquid at the top of the screen so it runs down and melts the ice whilst simultaneously using less product
-If using a scraper, scrape from top to bottom
-Never leave your car unattended whilst it is running; this is illegal and your vehicle could get stolen
-It is illegal to have obstructions such as snow and ice on your windscreen whilst driving so you must make sure the screen is completely clear before beginning your journey
De-icing your car may seem like a simple task but there are lots of things you need to keep in mind! One way to avoid having to defrost your windscreen altogether, would be to place a cover sheet over the windscreen the night before to prevent ice being able to form altogether. Finally, it is also essential to remember that if your car is frozen over, it is extremely likely that the roads will also be icy so you should make sure to remember to drive with caution to not put yourself or others in danger.