How to Defrost Your Windshield in Less Than Five Minutes

Beat the winter frost with this simple solution.

One of the most dreaded tasks of the cold winter months is waiting for your windshield to defrost. Blasting the defrost can take time and wastes gas; and using a scraper isn’t always effective, requires a lot of muscle, and can lead to frozen hands. Here’s why it’s a mistake to pour warm water on a frozen windshield.

This easy to make solution can clear your windshield in less than a minute and get you on the road fast. Simply mix 1/3 part water and 2/3 part isopropyl or rubbing alcohol. Pour the solution into a spray bottle and in the morning, spray it on your windshield. The ice will disappear instantly. You can also spray the solution on your car handles and doors if they are frozen shut. Still keep your scraper handy, though, as you may need to scrape off some excess chunks of ice. These are 10 creative ways to stay warm in a car that has no heat.

This works because isopropyl doesn’t freeze until it reaches 128°F below 0. Therefore, you can also keep the spray bottle in your car without worrying about it freezing over night.

Another thing to note: Make sure that you continue to wash and wax your car on a regular basis if you spray the solution on a part of your car that is painted. Even though the solution doesn’t directly touch the paint, if used often, it could cause it to erode. Next, check out the 20 things you should never leave in your car during the winter.

Morgan Cutolo
Morgan is an Associate Editor at Reader’s Digest. She graduated from the University of New Hampshire in 2016 where she received her Bachelor of Arts in Journalism. She writes for rd.com, helps lead the editorial relationship with our partners, manages our year-round interns, and keeps the hundreds of pieces of content our team produces every month organized. In her free time, she likes exploring the seacoast of Maine where she lives and works remotely full time and snuggling up on the couch with her corgi, Eggo, to watch HGTV or The Office.