Girl cleaning her windshield from ice

How to Deice Your Car Without Causing Damage

Is there anything worse than getting ready for work and heading out the door, only to find your car coated with ice? Once the temperature drops, ice can wreak havoc on your vehicle. Before you feel tempted to grab some boiling water to melt the ice, keep in mind that the sharp temperature change can cause some big damage. We’ll show you how to safely deice your car this winter. 

Use the Defrost Setting

The best way to remove ice from your car is with your defrost button. We know it takes some time, but being patient will help. Try to leave home at least 10 to 20 minutes earlier than you normally do. Turn on the defroster and sit in your vehicle as it heats up. Keep in mind that your city may have a law that bans you from leaving a running car unattended. 

Scrape the Windshield

You should never drive until you remove all the ice from your windshield, as it interferes with your vision and can lead to an accident. Once the defroster starts working, carefully run a scraper across the glass. Start around the edges where you can see the ice melting. Keep working your way up the glass. It usually only takes around 10 minutes when you use the defroster and a scraper. 

Thaw Door Locks

On colder days, you may find your locks frozen, too. There are many commercial products that work well, but you can also use a heat source. Try a hair dryer on a low setting or even a lighter. Keep the heat a few inches away from the lock to slowly bring it up to temperature. Then, place the key inside the lock, and gently rock it until it lets you into the car. 

Hand sanitizer also works in a pinch. Holding your key in one hand, apply a thin coating of hand sanitizer onto the metal and rub it onto the key. Insert the key into the lock, and slowly turn it until the door opens.  

Avoid Home Remedies

Popular home remedies for deicing a car include hot or boiling water and vinegar. Using hot water is dangerous because it shocks the windshield and can shatter the glass. Almost as soon as you pour the water onto the glass, you might hear a sharp noise as the glass splinters and breaks. Replacing the windshield will cost more than you want to spend, and your insurance may not cover it.  

Using a winter car wash is a safe way to clean your car during the cold season. A car wash also comes in handy if you use another remedy like vinegar. Some claim that vinegar will melt ice quickly, but vinegar is also acidic and can damage your car. Even if it doesn’t break the glass, it can eat through the paint and clear coat on your vehicle. Stick to safe methods to deice your car like using a scraper and the defroster. 

Once you deice your car this winter, stop by your nearby Quick Quack to get rid of the salt and road chemicals that can damage your car.