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Expert advice

How to easily defrost your windshield during winter?

A windshield defrost is easy if you follow certain tips

Busy schedules and winter weather rarely mix. Let's face it, no one takes pleasure in plowing and defrosting their car when in a hurry in the freezing cold. Fortunately, there are several ways to defrost the windshield to save time, prevent damage to the windshield and overcome frost!


Keep in mind that it is always better to prevent frost from forming. Here are a few tips, most of them affordable, that will help you defrost your windshield easily:

  1. Lay a cardboard or an anti-frost cover on the windshield the day before precipitation or very cold weather. Remove it before leaving is all you will need to do.
  2. When the winter season begins, you can rub your windows with a solution of white vinegar (or 90° alcohol) and water using a cloth (dosage: one volume of water for three volumes of vinegar). Always have a bottle of this mixture and a cloth at hand so that you can repeat the operation every night on dry windows on the eve of extreme cold weather. No white vinegar available? Cut a potato or an onion in half which you will then rub on your windows! The protective film left by these vegetables will prevent frost from forming.
  3. Put together a winter windshield washer to prevent your windshield wipers from freezing: pour in two thirds of demineralized water, one third of 90° alcohol and a drop of dishwashing liquid. Why this composition? Alcohol protects your windows from the cold and makes them less sensitive to humidity, while demineralized water prevents lime deposits and dishwashing liquid cleans the windshield and forms a protective layer.
  4. Have your car windows treated with an Aquapel® treatment. A treatment of this type is very useful in winter because the ice sticks to the water repellent treatment and not directly to the windows. This makes it easier to remove ice and scrape windows. Talk to a Lebeau® expert for more information.
  5. How about the frost on your locks? Put a piece of duct tape on your locks before a cold winter day. All you will have to do is remove it before unlocking your vehicle. To prevent freezing, you can also spray lubricant into the locks a few times during the winter.
  6. Equip your vehicle with a remote car starter. It's a great way to warm up the car and make it easier to defrost, without stepping foot outside. Lebeau Vitres d'autos® offers you four remote starter models. For more information, read our article "How to choose the right remote starter".

Did you forget to apply your white vinegar solution or put your protective cardboard on the night before and your car is covered with ice in the morning? No need to panic! Here are some backup solutions to remove the frost formed on your windshield.


What to do if your windows are covered with frost[1]?

  • Spray a water and salt solution on your frozen windows (dosage: one volume of salt for one liter of water). The salt will help melt the frost through a chemical reaction. After this operation, the frost will be easy to remove. The same can be done with a mixture of 90° alcohol and water (dosage: one volume of 90° alcohol for two volumes of water).
  • Spray your windows with a de-icing product purchased in-store, which will facilitate the defrosting operation.


What to avoid at all costs and why

  • Pouring hot water on the windshield! Why? The thermal shock could cause your windshield to crack. Prevention is key when you know you short on time. Plus, as water freezes quickly in extreme cold, you will end up wasting more time.
  • Blasting hot air towards your windshield and overheating it. Why? When the freezing air hits the warm air from your vehicle, the temperature fluctuation can damage the laminate glass (a component of the windshield).
  • Driving with your windshield or windows still frozen. With low visibility, you risk putting yourself in danger for just a few minutes gained.


To overcome frost during winter, Lebeau recommends keeping an emergency kit inside your vehicle as well as the following items:

  • A snow brush with a scraper and / or hand scraper.
  • A can of anti-freeze washer fluid (at least -25 degrees Celsius).
  • An aerosol defroster.
  • An anti-frost cover.

If you want to prepare your vehicle for winter by opting for an Aquapel® treatment, use our service center locator to find the one near you.


[1] Failure to strictly follow these recommendations may result in injury or permanent damage to the windshield in which case Belron Canada (Lebeau Vitres d'auto®) will not be held liable in any way.