Unfortunately, defrosting season is officially upon us. Months of scraping, skidding and shivering lay ahead, but it doesn’t have to be as hard as it sounds.
Snow and ice on the roads, frost and fog on your windows, driving to and from work in the dark, it’s clear that these conditions are far from ideal for us motorists. But fret not, for Motor-Vision have several solutions to make these cold autumnal and winter months less finger-numbing than last year’s.
Use a windshield cover for goodness’ sake!
Look upon your neighbours with smugness as they toil away at scraping the ice off their windshields with their red fingers, while you on the other hand simply whip off the windshield cover you put on last night with a flick of the wrist and drive away.
Seriously, these covers can cost as little as £3 and are sold all over the place. Just pop into your local supermarket and they’ll likely have them in stock. If you drive on a daily basis then just put the cover on once you’ve parked up for the day and in the morning, you’ll find yourself not having to deal with the arduous task of scraping ice.
On particularly frosty days, the cover won’t keep the windshield 100% frost free, but it will keep 90% of it off. It’s a no-brainer, so what are you waiting for!
Dehumidifiers are cheap and help prevent condensation
Another cheap hack to make those cold mornings easier – buy a dehumidifier! Similar to those silicone bead packets you get in packaging boxes, dehumidifier bags are basically the large version of that. Sit one on your dashboard and you’ll find that your windows no longer “mist up”. This is because the beads in the bag absorb all the moisture in the air, leaving your car’s cabin air much drier.
You’ll soon find that you no longer have to wipe the condensation from your windows and are able to drive off while actually being able to see what’s in front of you. Alternatively, if you don’t want for fork out the £7 you could just gather/buy some mini silicone packets and place them around the car. If you’re desperate, you could even leave a tray of cat litter in your car overnight to soak up all the moisture in the air. Works a treat, just remember to take it out before setting off.
Have some spare thermal layers in your boot
If you are lucky enough to have not experienced breaking down in the cold, then you may take this one for granted. We may not dress for arctic conditions when travelling via car because we know that our motors provide us with a cosy heated environment for us to sit in as we go about our journeys. We often neglect the fact that we could break down at any time and when that happens, we’ll be sitting in a thin jumper waiting in the cold for a good hour or two.
Not only will these extra clothes be good for warmth, but if they’re old or cheap and you don’t mind if they get ruined, they can also be used as traction mats for getting you unstuck from the snow or ice. Just put them under your spinning wheels and your tyres will have something to grip to.
Your car is at its highest chance of breaking down in these cold winter and autumn months, so it only makes sense to throw an old coat or some thermals in the boot, for peace of mind if nothing else. You’ll be thanking yourself when the time comes.
Spray soapy water on your windows
Once you’re finished with your car for the day, spritz some extra soapy water over any windows/mirrors you don’t want to frost over and then in the morning, there should be noticeably less frost and therefore, less work. Soap has a lower freezing point than water so if your windows are covered in it, they’ll find it hard to freeze over.
Simply buy a spray bottle and add some extra soapy solution. The soapier it is, the more effective it will be. Keep it in your boot and just before you leave your car parked for the night, take 30 seconds to coat your windows and mirrors in it’s not raining, the solution should protect your car from the frost, even if it is just a little bit.
Keep your revs low
With cold weather comes snow and ice. If you find yourself driving in heavy snow, make sure to keep your revs low to reduce the chances of you spinning out. This means being in a high gear and lightly stepping on the accelerator. Revving the engine in situations of low grip (such as snow or ice) does not make you go faster, but rather spins the wheels making your car even less grippy. It’s surprising how many motorists are still making life hard for themselves by not employing this supposedly well-known method.
If you’re stuck in snow, it may already be too late but putting your foot down is only going to dig you deeper in. When driving on ice or snow be sure to be in a high gear, make slow turns and keep your speed low.
We hope these cheap purchases and easy tricks will make your cold-weather driving that extra bit easier. Make sure to avoid using boiling water and stay away from the yellow snow!