Windscreen defrosting trick can cause ‘lasting damage’

With winter fast approaching, drivers are waking up to frosted windows and windscreen every morning before they leave for their commute. Many will have heard of some of the most common defrosting techniques, but attempting alternative methods could see drivers make mistakes.

Some drivers will still be reeling from the Met Office’s yellow weather warnings issued yesterday, with most of southern England, Wales and the West Midlands being battered by rain and wind.

A spokesperson for said: “Trying to scrape the windscreen of a vehicle on a cold and frosty morning can be a huge inconvenience especially before setting off to work or school.

“Every year it is almost guaranteed that drivers will use their credit card or an old CD to clear the snow from their cars, but this can cause lasting damage to a vehicle. 

“Making sure the windscreen is covered with tarp or some sort of sheet can help to ease the ice build up. And there are a number of homemade solutions that can be made that act as a great alternative to de-icer.”

READ MORE: Motorists can defrost their windscreen using common objects

Salt water

Drivers can make a solution using water and a teaspoon of salt and use a misting spray bottle to spray it over the windscreen.

If people don’t have a spray bottle, they can buy one for as little as 70p from The Range. Alternatively, they can use an old towel to spread it over the windscreen.

However, salt could damage the windscreen, as well as collect around the washer fluid nozzles. Avoid spraying the paintwork too, as salt might corrode the metal.

READ MORE: Drivers urged to use ‘miracle’ 95p household object to clear frost


While this may seem like the most obvious option for drivers to clear frost or ice, some drivers underestimate the cold temperatures in winter and don’t keep a spare bottle around.

Most de-icers will either be in a can or a spray bottle and have a fast-acting formula to help clear frost from windscreens and windows quickly.

Oftentimes, it is effective at temperatures as low as -20 degrees and helps to prevent re-freezing after clearing it initially.

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By Felix Reeves

Felix Reeves writes all things motoring for the Cars section. He recently completed his BA in Journalism at the University of Kent.

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