Icy windscreens: ditch the scraper - mikem004
No more scraping icy windscreens for me.
After the last couple of frosty nights I decided to try a different approach. A small saucepan, half full with lukewarm water, as suggested by others worked wonders! It cleared all the windows in no time.
Filling up a saucepan and going out to the car and back is a lot quicker than scraping away.

But does the lukewarm water trick work OK for really hard frosts? Or does the water simply refreeze as you apply it?

Bruce
Icy windscreens: ditch the scraper - RichardW
If you want to crack your windscreen you'er going the right way about it! Probably OK most of the time, but thermal shock may get the better of it one day..... Probably as you say no good for hard frosts.

I use a 3kW fan heater in the car for about 15 mins before I need it. Melts all the ice and warms the car up so it doesn't steam up. Not practical for all I know, but for those with access.....

Richard
Icy windscreens: ditch the scraper - Daedalus
Richard,

Im with you, I have a socket in the garage fitted with a timer I put the heater in the car and run an extension to it from the timer. It comes on about 15 minutes before I go to work.

Bill
Icy windscreens: ditch the scraper - madf
Well where I live, rural Staffs, 500 feet above sea level.. in hard frosts that's the way to get a THICK coating of ice..all over everything..
Icy windscreens: ditch the scraper - Blue {P}
I just hit my Quickclear windscreen button and sit back and watch the windscreen de-ice itself! :) It's great when you're running late for work and don't want to freeze your fingers off outside! I just used it this weekend for the first time.

Although if you don't have one of these then you can get heated ice scrapers, they work fairly well. A mate once saw a woman chuck a bucket of steaming hot water all over her frozen screen. It shattered instantly! :) He had trouble explaining to her why it happened, she genuinely couldn't understand how!
Icy windscreens: ditch the scraper - mikem004
Lukewarm (as opposed to boiling) water is Ok isn't it?

I can't see as how the temp change is any greater than if you are are washing your car on a boiling hot day and chuck some cold water on it?

Mike

Icy windscreens: ditch the scraper - Paul Mykatz-Tinks
"I just hit my Quickclear windscreen button"

Do you know if these screens block dash mounted radar detectors, BO ?
Icy windscreens: ditch the scraper - Blue {P}
When I tried it, the detector just seemed to have a slightly reduced range, but it still worked. :)

I very rarely have the detector in the car though 'cos I don't speed, so it doesn't matter that much. I'm much happier been able to sit and listen to the radio for 30 seconds while the car defrosts itself! Even got heated wing mirrors, I love Ghias! :)
Icy windscreens: ditch the scraper - kithmo
"I just hit my Quickclear windscreen button"
Do you know if these screens block dash mounted radar detectors,
BO ?

Supposedly, but mine works OK
Icy windscreens: ditch the scraper - L'escargot
I just hit my Quickclear windscreen button and sit back and
watch the windscreen de-ice itself!


Ford Quickclear screens are absolutely brilliant at both demisting and defrosting. Can't understand why electrically heated front screens aren't standard on all cars now.
Icy windscreens: ditch the scraper - Flat in Fifth
I just hit my Quickclear windscreen button and sit back and
watch the windscreen de-ice itself! :) It's great when you're running
late for work and don't want to freeze your fingers off
outside!


But what about the rest of the windows???? :-(((((((((((
Icy windscreens: ditch the scraper - Shigg
How much is a replacement screen? I know a guy that had a Granada but something went wrong and only half the screen would clear.

Steve.
Icy windscreens: ditch the scraper - Blue {P}
Replacement screens aren't cheap, but they aren't loads more than a normal screen.

As for the side windows, they are treated with Rain Wizard which seems to help stop the ice forming, and when it does, it comes off easier.

Besides, de-icing the side windows doesn't take anywhere near as long as the windscreen, by the time I've wiped any ice off them (on the rare occasions that there is any) the front screen has de-iced itself.

Still a fantastic invention...

Blue
Icy windscreens: ditch the scraper - Glaikit Wee Scunner {P}
Well I lived in Buxton , Derbyshire for over 25 years, at 1100 feet above sea level, and never broke a windscreen by pouring hot water over it. I recommend getting the engine running and the demister going before trying it.
Yes, you will occasionally get re-freezing but it usually beats scraping or putting dodgy chemicals on your paintwork.
Icy windscreens: ditch the scraper - Phil I
I find keeping car in heated garage works fine for me

Moral here is " get that rubbish down to the recycling centre
(aka The Tip)
Icy windscreens: ditch the scraper - andymc {P}
Cold water is still warmer than ice, so use cold water rather than lukewarm - the reduced difference in temperature between the water and the glass makes cracking less likely. Will take longer to work though.
I got a plastic scraper out of Halfords a few years ago and it scratched the glass at the top of the windscreen of my old car. I'll never use one again.
Icy windscreens: ditch the scraper - madf
I cracked a Volvo 740 windscreen using warm water.. (I've a 3 car garage now:-)
Icy windscreens: ditch the scraper - CMark {P}
As I am wolfing down my 3 shredded wheat, I glance out of the kitchen window and, if there's been a frost, I fill up the kettle and stick it on. By the time I've grabbed my coat and hat and kissed SWMBO good-bye the kettle has boiled and I pour it over the windscreen, side windows, mirrors and, what ever is left, over the back window. Then I use a rubber blade squeegee to dry the glass.

Has never failed in 10 UK winters. Never cracked a glass on the 15 different Rovers I have had at the time, from old ones (1967 Spitfire - OK, so not a Rover but BL) to new ones (600s, 200s, and 400s). Also this is the system my Dad uses on his XM and Xantia.

Never re-freezes and as a bonus, cleans off the previous days salt and filth.

CMark
PS "don't try this at home". The usual disclaimer clauses apply.
Icy windscreens: ditch the scraper - Dom F {P}
Using cold water is a stupid suggestion. Not only will it NOT reduce the ice, but when you move off, it will turn to windscreen sheet ice.
Icy windscreens: ditch the scraper - Cliff Pope
Using cold water is a stupid suggestion. Not only will it
NOT reduce the ice, but when you move off, it will
turn to windscreen sheet ice.


Warm water freezes faster than cold. Established scientific fact. Try placing 2 milk bottles, one of warm, one of cold, water, on your doorstep on a freezing night. I have - it works!
Icy windscreens: ditch the scraper - CMark {P}
Hi Cliff,
you wrote: "Warm water freezes faster than cold. Established scientific fact." Not quite that clear cut, it seems. Should have read "Warm water freezes faster than cold under certain conditions. Established scientific fact."

You might have observed it using milk bottles over a period of hours but I seriously doubt this phenomenon is present in the few minutes it takes when pouring jugs of boiling (or even warm) water over a frozen windscreen.

The key thing is not to slop your kettlefull over the windscreen in one 3 pint slosh but to pour it slowly onto the top of the screen so that it melts the frost in 15 cm wide strips as the hot water runs down. Pour too quickly and the water is still hot as it runs uselessly away off the bottom of the screen; pour too slowly and the water re-freezes before it reaches the bottom. The secondary aim is to heat the screen enough for the remaining water film to evaporate dry itself or at least remain unfrozen long enough to do a once over with the squeegee.

The day I crack my windscreen defrosting it with boiling water, I will eat my kettle.

Can't say fairer than that ;-)

CMark
PS I once saw a customer crack a Defender windscreen when swatting a fly against it with his hand whilst driving off from the workshop. Ex-marine-type.
Icy windscreens: ditch the scraper - Cliff Pope
The day I crack my windscreen defrosting it with boiling water,
I will eat my kettle.

>

I've seen it happen, so I can't wait!
I remember a silly story about a man who ate his car for a bet. He chopped it up, dissolved the metal, and allegedly did succeed in eating it all over several years. A kettle should be a day's work.
Icy windscreens: ditch the scraper - deere3350
Using cold water is a stupid suggestion. Not only will it
NOT reduce the ice, but when you move off, it will
turn to windscreen sheet ice.


Not if you use the wipers first.
Icy windscreens: ditch the scraper - eMBe {P}
This topic generated a really interesting batch of contributions last winter (check it out with the search facility), including the surprising fact that in controlled experiments it has been proved that previously boiled water freezes faster than non-boiled water!!
Icy windscreens: ditch the scraper - Andy22
i bought a halfords standard ice scraper and the edge that you scrape with was rounded so got no connection with windscreen and also the scraper was straight but most windscreens are curved, so it was cr**

Where can i get a quality ice scraper for not much money?
Icy windscreens: ditch the scraper - Galaxy
If you want a good and cheap windscreen scraper try using a small square of hardboard. A small scrap can usually be found for nothing, and it's relatively soft so it won't scratch the screen.

OK, it won't last for ever, but at zero cost, who's bothered?!
Icy windscreens: ditch the scraper - eMBe {P}
use an old plastic card - sainsbury's reward card will do fine!

re boiled water freezing faster, check out

www.weburbia.com/physics/hot_water.html
Icy windscreens: ditch the scraper - Steve S
Used very warm water on all sorts of cars in all sorts of frosts and never, ever cracked a windscreen. As long as the water is not near boiling and the screen has no fault you will be fine.
Icy windscreens: ditch the scraper - Andy22
i'd rather actually use a real icescraper not a lump of hardboard, any other suggestions?
Icy windscreens: ditch the scraper - mikem004
Use a plastic cassette tape cover.

Mike
Icy windscreens: ditch the scraper - Toad, of Toad Hall.
Used very warm water on all sorts of cars in all
sorts of frosts and never, ever cracked a windscreen


Me to. For years I used warmish water. I got so feb up with people stopping to tell me I was mad and that I'd break the windscreen that I stopped and use a scraper now.

Given than the hot air blower works by blowing a hot fluid (air) onto the screen the principle seems to work fine.
--
These are my own opinions, and not necessarily those of all Toads.
www.private-eye.co.uk/innews
Icy windscreens: ditch the scraper - T Lucas
I always use warm water,put the wipers on intermitant and slowly pour the water onto the roof of the car above the screen so that it flows down the screen.Have done this for 25 years almost,many diferent cars and so far,touch wood without problems.Then just splash some on the side windows,job done.
Icy windscreens: ditch the scraper - Jonathan {p}
Isn't glycol and urea usesd as an antifreeze?

what better source of warm water with urea and other salts to prevent refreezing than.......
Icy windscreens: ditch the scraper - Paul Mykatz-Tinks
You taking the............?

Icy windscreens: ditch the scraper - andymc {P}
I remember watching an experiment on TV where a glass bottle which had been left in a freezer for an hour was placed in a sink and had boiling water poured on it. It actually exploded. Explanation was that glass tries to expand when heated and contracts when cooled. So a sudden slosh of hot water on icy glass makes it expand too quickly to remain intact. It's the sudden jump in temperature that does it. Same thing is presumably responsible for the need to warm a glass before making hot whiskey - though why anyone would want to further dilute somthing that's already 60% water in the first place is beyond me ;)
Cold water on the windscreen isn't stupid - just use your wipers. Hasn't given me any problems.
Icy windscreens: ditch the scraper - Andrew Hamilton
Agree with earlier suggestion of electric heater. I leave a 2Kw one in my van permanently in winter. Just run out long cable to nearest plug, wait for 15 min, warm van, all screens clear and no fogging up. However living in sunny Essex we rarely see snow!
Icy windscreens: ditch the scraper - CMark {P}
Hi Andymc,
fortunately, windscreens are not made from the same glass as bottles!

Front screens are laminated and other glass is tempered. All the glass in all the cars I have driven have withstood boiling water poured on them on numerous occasions. My Sptifire is the only one of them to have tempered glass in the windscreen (and it is the original 1967 one as I can tell from the manufacturer's markings). All the others were laminated.

CMark
Icy windscreens: ditch the scraper - andymc {P}
Oh yeah, I know the production & maufacturing treatment is different - in fact, I'm having a staircase with glass treads put into my house next week, so I've been learning about the different properties of glass for some time now!! Toughened glass breaks into crystals like sugar lumps, but float glass cracks into shards. There is more flexibility in windscreen glass than in a wine bottle, but the same thing can still happen if hot water is slopped all over a really cold windscreen. I just choose not to take the risk of having to replace it!
Icy windscreens: ditch the scraper - L'escargot
Isn't glycol and urea usesd as an antifreeze?

>>

Yes, glycol is used in some antifeeze products, but it will damage the paintwork.
Icy windscreens: ditch the scraper - jc
Start the engine,put the heater on defrost while you scrape the other windows,by then the screen should be clear or are you one of the those who don't clear the other windows?
Icy windscreens: ditch the scraper - Peter D
Live in Scotland, hate srappers, not on my cars you don't luke warm water every time or deicer if away from home. Running engine for a couple of mins is ok but not ideal. I keep a bucket and water jug handy all winter and deice ALL windows in less than a minute. Sometime have to double treat then below -10

Regards Peter
Icy windscreens: ditch the scraper - Emerson Fittipaldi
I have used luke warm water for years now, and it's never resulted in a cracked windscreen.

1.) Scrapers take too long (and your hands get too cold)

and

2.) De-icer's not pleasant when it gets into your car through the ventilation system

Or why not prempt the frost and get an old sheet, and cover the windscreen with that, much better than all the above.

Oh don't we Love winter?
Icy windscreens: ditch the scraper - Blue {P}
My aunt has some freinds who decided a long time ago that it would be funny to build a "snow wall" in the back lane behind their row of terraced houses. It stretched from their side right over to the other, then they threw buckets of hot water over it and it froze solid. The lane was blocked for 3 days, even the bin lorry couldn't get through it! :)
Icy windscreens: ditch the scraper - madf
I used to get up at 5am on a Monday and drive 200 miles. The car was kept garaged. On really cold mornings, it would ice up within 1 mile of starting.. unless you started it up and idled it for 10 mins first. And the washers froze no matter how much mixture you put in.

I now have a Ford Fiesta with heated front screen:-)
Icy windscreens: ditch the scraper - Blue {P}
They're great aren't they? :)

No more frostbitten fingers OR farting around with kettles and warm water!
Icy windscreens: ditch the scraper - BrianW
Better than an old sheet, a plastic cover with elastics is only about a fiver from Halfords or Argos and lasts years.
Icy windscreens: ditch the scraper - blank
Somebody mentioned in a post a couple of months back that rubbing the screen with a cut potato prevented it frosting up on cold nights.
There hasn't been a suitably cold night for me to try this yet (in Kent) but I plan to soon!

Any thoughts on this one?

Andy
Icy windscreens: ditch the scraper - John Bullen
I generally use a bucket of lukewarm water, with just a splash of detergent applied with a car cleaning brush and then wiped off using a window wiper (you know the things with the rubber edge that remove all the water). This aviods the "shock treatment" of using boiling water, additionally the problem with just chucking water over the windows and then not wiping it off is that it will generally freeze over rapidly as you drive off,


John
Icy windscreens: ditch the scraper - martint123
There was something in the car suplement of the local paper tonight saying that hot water freezes faster than cold water !!!!!!! what!!

Search with Google for the phrase 'mpemba effect' discovered by a Tanzanian schoolboy making icecream.

hepweb.rl.ac.uk/ppUK/PhysFAQ/hot_water.html

Isn't life wierd?

Martin
Icy windscreens: ditch the scraper - RichardM
That may well be the case.

However, cold water will not warm the glass through so that ice on the inside of the screen is thawed. Nor will it prevent subsequent condensation from misting up the screen as you drive. Hot will. I would never consider using anything else - the number of idiots I see peering through a small patch of scraped off ice in front of their faces on winter mornings scares me. Oh, and I've never had any problems with this method despite using it for years. Very warm, not boiling!
Icy windscreens: ditch the scraper - Shigg
Great debate!
My solution - put car in garage when at home, use de-icer and squeegee (sorry about spelling) when out and about and treat side and rear windows with rain-x now and again. I know this is really obvious but open the window slightly as soon as you get in the car and steaming up isn't that bad, tilting the sunroof up can help clear the mist really well.

Steve.
Icy windscreens: ditch the scraper - Oz
Don't use a valid credit card or other card for the job. Not only will the ice burr the edges of the card. The card will embrittle when chilled, and become highly breakable, as I found out when I sat dowm in the car after placing the card in my back pocket - ouch ... :-(
Oz (as was)
Icy windscreens: ditch the scraper - Lsr
Heat flows from hot to cold. If a bucket of water at 60C and a bucket of water at 40C is *sealed* and left in a freezer the cold will freeze first. I'd bet my lunch that would happen if they weren't sealed too but probably only a sandwich. I can see that there may be reasons why evaporation, convection and being pre-boiled might influence things but...

The *rate* of cooling of the hot liquid is faster. I think people pick up on the words "cools faster" to mean "it will reach freezing point first" rather than "loses heat quicker". The heat loss of the warmer water may be quicker i.e. the cooling gradient steeper, but the cold will hit 0C in the shortest time.

Anyway... what I have against scraping windscreens is the tiny scratches on the screen that can be seen in bright sunlight.
Icy windscreens: ditch the scraper - Big John
I use luke warm water to defrost the windscreen.
HOWEVER before I do this I lift the wipers of the screen as if you get water on these it will freeze over the wiper blade joints and springs causing a very patchy wipe pattern.

It also ensures you dont blow a fuse or burn out wiper motor if the blades were stuck to the screen!

I wish the Skoda Octavia had a heated screen though, it does however have washer jets that are below the bonnet line that dont suffer from wind chill freezing. Infact if your windscreen washer mix is too weak and the washer jets freeze it only takes a few minutes driving to make the jets defrost.
Icy windscreens: ditch the scraper - SteveH42
As a thought, would it work if you took a bucket of warm water out and used a rag that been soaked in it to raise the screen temperature a bit before using the water itself? That said, deicer is just so easy to use.... :)

I know about the tiny scratches on screens - my Tipo screen was terrible, especially when the low sun was shining directly on to it.
Icy windscreens: ditch the scraper - kurnal
Humbug!
Live out in the high peak, have used a hot kettle for years- my dad used to use it in the early fifties and every car he and I have ever owned since have only been defrosted in this way. Laminated screens, toughened screens, side windows never a hint of a problem with any of them. If the water is hot the galss remains warm and keeps the ice at bay as you start to drive.
There is a disadvantage though- all that water running round the door handles and locks can cause them to freeze up when you park up at the other end of the journey. Have been known to use a portable warm water kit I carry with me for that one!
Got a new mondeo now and yes the screen is great.
Icy windscreens: ditch the scraper - googolplex
great debate folks but nothing has convinced me to ditch the scraper. There's something quite theraputic about scraping off ice in the morning. My scrapers in a right old state but the windscreen has never scratched. I'm concerned, however, for all these people who are afraid of the cold - personally, it helps me wake up and at least reminds me that there's ice about so to drive carefully.

splodgeface
Icy windscreens: ditch the scraper - Keith S
Flick the engine on, put the heated front and rear screen on. Put the aircon on full heat, recirculation and point at the windscreen.

Lock car with spare key.

Make tea and drink in cosy house.

Get in loverly warm defrosted car and go to work. s** the tiny additional wear on the engine.
Icy windscreens: ditch the scraper - Dynamic Dave
Flick the engine on, put the heated front and rear screen
on. Put the aircon on full heat, recirculation and point at
the windscreen.
Lock car with spare key.


Toerag comes along with housebrick. Smashes window and drives off with car. Insurance invalidated as you've left the keys in the vehicle.
Icy windscreens: ditch the scraper - Peter D
If the car is on a public it is a prosecutable road traffic offence to not have a qualified driver in the drivers seat when the engine is running.

I live in Scotland and just warm water is the best way never scrape as it cratches the glass with yesterday dirt frozen the the class.

Regards Peter
Icy windscreens: ditch the scraper - Keith S
Not worried and don't care.

It's normally on the drive in a very quiet area though.
Icy windscreens: ditch the scraper - Mark (RLBS)
It takes one coffee and two cigarettes for my car to defrost its own windscreen.

Not much chance of me doing it, I'd rather sit in the kitchen watching it sort itself out. The car is nice and warm to get in then as well.
Icy windscreens: ditch the scraper - Cliff Pope
The world is divided into those who have always used warm water and can't understand why everybody doesn't, and those who have seen a windscreen cracked by water and would never risk it again.
Icy windscreens: ditch the scraper - Dave_TD
Would it make much of a difference if it was a really hard frost? I use the warm water method, but the lowest temp we've had this winter has only been -3deg C. I could understand it being risky if it was -15deg every night, but there's not much chance of that round here.
I worry more about cracking my windscreen by pointing the heater at it on a cold morning than cracking it by de-icing it with warm water.
Icy windscreens: ditch the scraper - CMark {P}
Hi Cliff,
please can you give us more details about what exactly happened when you cracked your windscreen with warm water? What car was it? How cold was it? What exactly happened?

Just so we can avoid doing the same thing.

CMark
Icy windscreens: ditch the scraper - Cliff Pope
Hi Cliff,
please can you give us more details about what exactly happened
when you cracked your windscreen with warm water? What car was
it? How cold was it? What exactly happened?
Just so we can avoid doing the same thing.


It was in 1984, a very cold winter in West Wales, and fortunately not my car.
My brother in law poured a kettleful of recently boiled, but by then only hotish, water over his Volvo 240 front windscreen. It immediately cracked right across. It was a bonded-on screen, not rubber sealed kind, if that makes a difference.
Being my brother in law, he put a brick through it and claimed on his windscreen policy.

But ever since, I have been very wary of pouring water on windscreens. As I say though, hundreds of people do it with no damage. Now, I just erect a screen over the whole car, called a garage. It works a treat.
Icy windscreens: ditch the scraper - CMark {P}
Cliff,
and madf cracked his Volvo screen. Maybe there is a trend here...

Is there anything you can think of that might have contributed to the cracking? Bad stone chip? Repaired accident damage?

CMark

PS Anybody else out there crack a screen pouring water on it?

Icy windscreens: ditch the scraper - BrianW
Mark
I wouldn't have thought that one coffee (unless very large, like a gallon or so) and two cigarettes would give out enough heat to defrost and heat a whole car !

Brian
Still learning (I hope)
Icy windscreens: ditch the scraper - cHEv
I have a very simple way of defrosting my car, just leave it in the sun for a couple of hours it is usually defrosted by 1 or 2 in the afternoon, ready for when I get out of bed.

Being a student I can do this, I know this is not always practical but just try it at least once and say you had a doctors appointment or something.

At least there is no risk of cracked or cracked windscreens!
Icy windscreens: ditch the scraper - cHEv
Oops, supposed to be

At least there is no risk of cracked or scratched windscreens!
cheers, cHEv
Icy windscreens: ditch the scraper - Mark (RLBS)
One dips the cigarettes in the coffee until they soak up as much as possible and then rubs them on the windscreen.

Thought you'd have know that, Brian.
Icy windscreens: ditch the scraper - BrianW
Me no smokee, so don't have cigarettes available.

Brian
Still learning (I hope)

 

Value my car