It’s been quite a winter. Even here in the south, Old Man Winter has been busy dropping temperatures into single digits, blanketing the world in snow and making things generally difficult for commuters. As if hazardous road conditions weren’t enough to make one hit the snooze button a couple of dozen times, there is an unpleasant chore ahead before a morning commute can even be attempted: de-icing the windshield.
PREPARE THE NIGHT BEFORE
If you know snow and ice are coming, then take a few minutes in the evening to prep your vehicle. Turn the heat to full blast and on defrost so it will be set when you start your car in the morning. Lift your windshield wipers off the glass so that they don’t get stuck. You can also place a piece of cardboard over the glass. This is good for heavy snow, but not ice. If ice is possible, the cardboard can make things worse.
You need to have some products on hand before the storm. What you choose is up to you, but here are the basics that you should always have on hand:
CLEARING THE WAY
Once the snow and ice have come, you need to clear your vehicle. Begin by starting the vehicle with the temp cranked up and on defrost. If you have a rear defroster, turn it on too. NEVER EVER use hot water to melt the ice. This can shatter your glass. Instead, use the brush portion of your scraper to clear the loose snow until you get to a solid layer. Use the de-icer spray to melt the ice. Spray it on liberally in a small area and use the scraper to remove it. You don’t want to spray the entire windshield at once as it will just melt and possibly refreeze , making it even harder to remove.
If the ice is really thick, use the scraper to carve a groove in the ice. Once you reach the glass, you can then spray the deicer onto the glass and work the scraper under the ice to peel it off in sheets. The same trick works great for the side glass too.
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