Ice Off Your Automobile

Date: January 31, 2017      Publication: Bottom Line's Household Magic      Source:  Joan Wilen & Lydia Wilen      Print:

Are you tired of scraping your car windshield and wrestling with a frozen car door? There’s still plenty of winter to come, so if you’ve had enough of it all, try these short cuts to a frost-free automobile…

Bag trick: If you dread scraping your car windshield on frosty, freezing mornings, then this tip is for you. When you park your car outdoors overnight, spread a large plastic trash bag or sheet of plastic over the front windshield. Secure it under the windshield wipers and/or by shutting the doors on the edges of the bag(s). (Run your car with the wipers on and turn off the ignition when the blades land vertically on your windshield.) If you don’t have plastic bags, you also can use brown paper bags, which will be held in place by the windshield wipers. The next morning, when you remove the bag(s), your windshields will be free of ice and frost. Put little plastic or paper bags over your side mirrors to keep them frost free, too.

Chemical spread from your pantry: You also could try coating your windshield with sulfuric compounds. It’s not as dangerous as it sounds! In other words, cut an onion in half and rub the glass with the onion’s cut surface. The coating will prevent the formation of ice on your windshield. Don’t forget to onion-up your side mirrors.


Easy door release: If you aren’t blessed with a garage, like some lucky so-and-sos, and icy weather is in the forecast, you need a way to get into your car without denting the driver’s-side door with an ice pick. Here’s what to do: Coat the rubber gaskets around the doors with vegetable oil or a thin layer of petroleum jelly to prevent them from freezing shut. You also can use a bit of vegetable oil or petroleum jelly to prevent your trunk from freezing solid.

Joan Wilen and Lydia Wilen are folk-remedy experts and home tipsters based in New York City. They have spent decades collecting "cures from the cupboard” and are authors of several books, including Bottom Line's Treasury of Home Remedies & Natural Cures and Bottom Line's Household Magic.

  • phantomflash

    I use pizza box lids on the windshield, held under the wipers.