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What is the fastest way to defrost your car windows?

By 16th December 2022 April 27th, 2023 Car Advice
frozen windscreen

Are you running to your car in the morning only to find that your windows are all frosted and fogged up this time of year? Panic can set in as you know you will now be running late.

Don’t begin your journey until you can clearly see out your car windows. Did you know you can get a £100 fine and 3 points on your licence if you drive with obscured vision?

Luckily, we have researched a few tips and tricks to help you clear your windows as safely and quickly as possible!

Hot air holds more moisture than cold air, so when the temperature drops, moisture held in the warmer air is released, resulting in condensation – which ultimately fogs up your windscreen.

To defog your windows quickly, you need to create the best environment to help the moisture removal process.

Defog and defrost your windows quickly with these simple tips:

  1. Turn your heater on.

Turn your car on and increase your heating to the highest setting as this is the best way to absorb excess moisture within your vehicle. Why? Hot air can hold more moisture.

2.Press the A/C button.

This may sound counterproductive, but this activates a setting on your car’s A/C system that helps dry the air within the car quicker and stop the car from misting up.

3.Turn air recirculation off.

You need fresh air to enter the car to help. Winter air is cold, and as it does not hold much moisture, it is dry. Bringing it into your car increases absorption capacity to help dry the saturated air trapped within.

4.Open your window.

This helps discharge the humid air in your car with dryer outside air to speed up waiting time.

5.Defrost windows.

While you wait for the defogging process to happen you can work on de-frosting your windows from outside.

This is an external process to clear your windows. You should NEVER use hot water to defrost your car window. This can damage your window screen.

How? Glass expands quickly when hot or even warm water touches it. But it will contract quickly too as it cools down in the cold air and this can result in a cracked windscreen.

Now defrosting quickly takes some pre-planning. If there is snow use a soft brush to remove it. We recommend you buy some de-icer spray and keep it in your car for when ice strikes. Simply spray your windows and use your scraper or the wipers to help move that ice away.

Tips for preventing ice build-up on your windscreen

You can stop frosty windows forming by planning where to park your car the night before.

  • If you have a garage, use it in winter as it’ll stop your car from frost build-up.
  • If you don’t have a garage, park your car under a canopy or close to the house.
  • Put a shield across your windscreen to stop it from getting icy – if you don’t have one find a large piece of cardboard – it will do the trick.
  • Make sure you have the right anti-freeze levels in your radiator and screen wash.
  • Always leave plenty of time to ensure your car is safe to drive.

How to defog your windshield when it’s raining

  1. Turn on your air conditioner.

Turn on the A/C as this engages the system’s coils in removing moisture from the air.

  1. Turn air recirculation off.

Make sure air recirculation is off to allow moisture to escape. This is the number one mistake people make when trying to rapidly defog windows.


Car won’t start?

If your car won’t start due to the frost you can use our Granite Breakdown Service. Granite Breakdown is a division of CRASH Services, and they provide breakdown vehicle recovery for all Northern Ireland residents.

Call  028 90 029457 or join today at

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