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How to Keep Frost Off Your Windshield in the Winter

One of the first things to learn as a driver in Alberta is how to keep your windshield defrosted in the wintertime.
Credit: Pixabay


When the temperature begins to drop, it is time to change the windshield wiper fluid that is in your car. In the summer the washer fluid is pink and is used for getting rid of bugs. However, this is not effective in the winter. The blue washer fluid has an antifreeze in it to prevent ice from freezing onto the windshield. You can also put this in a spray bottle and use this on your side mirrors.

You can create your own deicing spray with vinegar. Using a spray bottle mix three parts of vinegar with one part of water. You can spray your windshield at night to try and prevent the windshield from freezing. In the morning after the snow is removed, you can spray this mixture on the windshield (if you don’t have the blue washer fluid). Vinegar does have a freezing point so don’t leave it in your car when it is really cold.

Mixing rubbing alcohol with water can also clear a window or prevent ice from freezing on the window. The mixture is slightly different with two parts rubbing alcohol with one part of water.  The freezing point is lower than just pure water and will take longer to freeze over if you spray it at night.

Do not make the mistake that I have seen with some drivers – do not use hot water to melt the ice on your windshield!

Cover It Up

If you never want to have to scrape your windshield again in the winter, then cover it up. The cover needs to be on the outside of the window, unlike the summer covers. You can get covers for the front window, the rear window and the side mirrors. There are somethings you can use from your home that will work as well. Using a piece of cardboard, a bed sheet or a shower curtain can help prevent the windshield from freezing. There may be a little ice still on the window depending on the material used to cover it up.


The morning ice scrape is a custom for many Albertans. Getting ready for work also means starting the car, shovelling the walk and then scraping the windshield when the defroster began to melt the ice. There are many great scrapers available from traditional brushes, to long-reaching brushes and modern cone scrapers. I do not recommend using your credit or debit card unless there are no other options. This can wreck your card.

Winter is part of Alberta life and freezing windshields are a part of winter. It is important to make sure your windshield is clear before driving away. A frozen window can cause an accident, but this is preventable with just a few minutes either the night before or before you start driving away.

CPC-logoThis story was made possible by our Community Partners Program. Thank you Davis Chevrolet for helping to expand local news coverage in Alberta. Learn more
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