Anyone who's ever had to remove snow from their car's roof or was late to work because they spent half an hour trying to defrost their windshield knows just how much trouble wintertime can cause when it comes to driving. Thankfully, the internet is filled with little-known hacks that simplify all those annoying car chores, and we've gathered the best ones here for you. So if you're ready to save time and stress every time you hit the road this season, read on!
Spray Cooking Oil to Prevent The Door Handle From Freezing
Picture this: you wake up late to work. You get ready as fast as you can and run to your car, pulling open the car door, only to find that it just won't budge. You look at it for a second and find out that it's frozen shut. Yes, winter's that bad this year. If only you knew a trick to avoid all of this. Turns out all you need is a can of oil spray!
Proactively spray your car door with oil, and it will prevent the handle from freezing. So simple!
Easily Clear up Foggy Windows With a Chalkboard Eraser
Remember those chalkboard erasers your teachers used to have back in the day? You know, the ones teachers would magically pull out of their back pockets and wipe the chalkboard clean with, while simultaneously getting flinging chalk residue powder all over the place? Well, turns out those bad boys are actually useful outside of the classroom, too, especially during the winter.
The chalkboard erasers are actually perfect for clearing up foggy windows on icy winter days. Who knew?
Use Hand Sanitizer to Defrost Frozen Keyholes
How frustrating is it to get out of your warm house on a freezing winter day, only to discover you can't get inside your car because the keyhole is frozen shut and you can't get your key in? Well, it turns out the solution is simpler than you think. Much easier than trying to pry it open with your key. Apparently, hand sanitizer makes a wonderful defroster.
Besides, if there's one thing we've learned from the past few years, it's that keeping a little bit of hand sanitizer nearby is usually a good idea. It could, you know, help prevent a global pandemic from spreading.
Can't Find the Ice Scraper? Use a Spatula From Your Kitchen
You never know when a spatula will come in handy. Spatulas aren't just made for cooking like most people think. You can also use them to scrape ice off your windshield, just like you would with an ice scraper. You'd be surprised to find out just how effective such a simple tool can be on a frosty day.
The best thing about using a spatula like the one in the picture is that it isn't made of metal, so it won't scratch the glass windows of your car. It's a win-win!
Get Your Car Out of the Snow Using Cardboard
So you may or may not know this, but keeping a little bit of cardboard on deck is generally a good idea, even throughout the hotter seasons. It could always help soak up coffee spills and other liquids, but that's not the only thing it's useful for. Cardboard gains a special use during the winter months - if your car ever gets stuck in a think sheet of snow, place some cardboard under the wheels to get it out.
That extra bit of traction the cardboard adds could really be a game-changer when it comes to getting your car out of a rut and back on the road.
Use Rubbing Alcohol on Rusty Windshields Wipers
Apparently, rubbing alcohol is even more handy than we all thought. When it comes to dealing with jammed up windshield wipers, use rubbing alcohol to remove any excess material stopping the blades from performing as well as they should, such as wax, grease, or built-up dirt. It will melt away the grime that's stopping your wipers from moving properly, which can be a major issue during the cold, wet months.
Just make sure you let the alcohol dry before using the wipers and you should be good to go.
A Periodic Under-Car Cleaning Saves You Tons of Money in the Long-Run
There's a hidden area that nobody dares go - that is, the shadow realm of under one's car. During the rainy season, road salt and constant water splashes from the rain can damage the underside of your car, which isn't protected by any coating like the rest of your car. If you're not careful, the underside can become grimy and rusty, which can be extremely damaging to your car.
Cleaning it with water is one solution, but you can also get specialized undercarriage sprays to treat it.
Use Toothpaste to Make Your Headlights Crystal Clear
This trick is hard to believe, but it works like magic. The abrasive particles found in most kinds of toothpaste can really help clean your headlights and improve their visibility, especially when it's cold and frosty outside, and you want maximum efficiency in low visibility. Think heavy snowfall or rain; You really want your headlights to work best when it's difficult to see outside.
Just rub some toothpaste all across your headlights, then wipe them clean. You'll see the difference immediately!
Water + Vinegar = No More Ice
This water and vinegar concoction is as simple as it is a potent de-icer. Instead of going out of your way to purchase expensive, name-brand de-icers, mix together equal parts of vinegar and warm water, spray it on your icy windshield, and watch as the ice begins to melt and break into smaller, easier-to-shovel away pieces, just like isopropyl alcohol would.
This homemade solution is also much cheaper than any commercial de-icer, and it can also do wonders if applied the night before.
Put Socks on Your Windscreen Wipers to Keep Them From Freezing
Frozen windshield wipers can be a major issue in the cold season, especially when it's raining. To prevent this from happening, get an old pair of socks you don't use anymore, and slide them over each blade the night before you expect it to get frosty. You can also lift them up so they won't freeze and stick to the windshield. In the morning, Remove the socks and use them normally.
It's crazy just how much of a difference this makes. It's really true what they say - take good care of your belongings, and they'll take good care of you.
Don't Leave Water Bottles in the Car - They Contribute to Frost
Okay so here a just a few reasons to keep your water bottles out of your car during the winter time: firstly, they contribute to creating frost. That's right - water freezes before the surrounding air, so when the water evaporates, it'll make the air cooler and produce condensation. Secondly, the actual water will freeze - so what's the point in having all those bottles around in the first place?
Save yourself the headache and keep your water bottles somewhere warm and cozy, like tucked under your sweater or snuggled up next to the fireplace. Trust us, your car (and your thirst) will thank you.
Save Time by Putting a Rug Over Your Windshield
Why not save all that time getting snow off your windshield by hand or by some other kind of anti-snow device? Sure, some people enjoy it, but there really isn't anything worse (in our humble opinion) than having to get five sheets of snow off your car before heading off to work. Definitely a reason to utilize a windshield rug. It'll save you so much time in the morning that you could spend browsing TikTok in bed.
You don't need a special windshield rug. You could just take any heavy blanket or think mat and stick it on your windshield while you're not using your car Just make sure to attach it to the car so it doesn't blow away in the wind.
Make Sure Your Tires Are Good to Go Using the Penny Test
So here's something to do if you're either profoundly bored or somehow find yourself in dire need of a quick little DIY tire check. Go ahead and get yourself a penny and stick itt in between the treads of your tires. If you can see the head of the President, that means the tires aren't deep enough, and you should probably do something about that. If you can't see the president, your tire pressure is alright.
Tires need a deep grip on whatever they're pushing back against in order to gain traction. To do that, their treads need to be deep. This is one of the basic mechanisms which actually get your car working and driving.
Cat Litter Helps Keep Your Car Moisture-Free
So apparently, kitty litter isn't just good for your, well, kitty. It also does wonders for your car, too! If your car has a bit of a moisture problem, which is definitely something that can happen over the winter, you could always spread (or strategically place) a bunch of kitty litter. This will dry up the air in your car and help combat all kinds of mold and rust. Sounds great, doesn't it?
There are, of course, more conventional solutions to such problems, but this is definitely something every cat owner could make use of. It's also pretty eco-friendly and cheap. Just fill up some kind of soft container (like a socking) with the stuff, and leave it in your car overnight.
Shaving Cream Prevents Your Windows From Fogging up
So we all know how fog tends to get on your car windows, and we all know how dangerous and annoying that can get. So while there is no shortage of de-foggers out there, sometimes you find yourself in a situation where you have no proper de-fogging material on your person. That's when you could totally bust out the shaving cream, which hopefully you have a can of in your house.
For some reason known only to shaving cream companies and God, shaving cream makes for a great de-fogger. So go ahead, rub some shaving cream on a paper towel and go to town. The cream might just creat a barrier between the window and the air - preventing fog from forming.
Wrap a Plastic Bag Around Your Side Mirrors
Now, we know that some of these winter hacks are a lot of work, and you may be thinking to yourself: how on Earth will I actually pull these off? Well, here's one that you totally have in the bag. If you hate wiping the ice off your car mirrors in the morning, just wrap them in a plastic bag whenever you aren't using them. There you go - no more ice.
Definitely a great way to save yourself a bit of work in the morning, which is always good in our book. Just be careful not to tie them those bags annoyingly tight.
Having an Emergency Kit in the Car Is the Most Important During Winter
It's always a good idea to keep an emergency kit in your car, just in case you find yourself stranded on the side of the road. A few essentials to add to your emergency winter kit is could be: batteries, a flashlight, a blanket, a flare or distress beacon, a bottle of water, and even a snack of your choosing. Every little bit of preparation helps a lot.
If you do find yourself stranded in the winter; turn on the car engine for 10 minutes at a time (no more) so that the car stays reasonably warm. You could also use whatever you have in your kit to cover windows, blocking out any cold wind from coming inside the car.
Keep Your Heating Effective and in Good Shape With Compressed Air
If you find yourself woefully disappointed regarding the efficiency of your car's air conditioning system (or just inhaling copious amounts of dust and other harmful substances air conditioning systems in cars somehow amass), well - we've got the trick for you. Go ahead and get yourself a nice can of compressed air. It'll make your car's temperature conditioning unit that much more effective, and we all know how important it is to keep your car warm throughout the winter.
Compressed air cans do pretty much what they say they do - they shoot out bursts of compressed air, which will definitely help clean out those hard-to-reach places inside your car's vents. Plus, using it just feels great.
Use Cat Litter on Your Wheels and Ground
Who knew kitty litter would be so useful? If you ever find yourself stuck in a very persistent batch of snow, not being able to move your car neither here nor there, you could always go ahead and bust out the kitty litter. Just spread it out all across the snow, and it'll provide enough traction for you to actually be able to move. Now isn't that neat?
So basically, what we're trying to say is that you should definitely consider keeping a spare pack of kitty litter in your glove compartment, even if you don't own a cat.
Your Leaf Blower Is Secretly a Snow Blower
So this little tip is for when you need some heavy-duty snow blowing. This isn't something you would want to do every day (and if you do find yourself having to do this every day, you should probably consider relocating somewhere a bit more tropical); it's something reserved for extreme snow conditions. What you do is take out your leaf blower and just let it rip on your car.
That should be enough to get even some of the heaviest piles of snow off your car and on to the ground, where snow belongs. Go ahead, put that snow in its place.
Make Sure to Get a Windshield Washer That Works in Freezing Temperatures
No this isn't the famous Shield Potion from Fortnight, It's just windshield washer fluid. Well, maybe we shouldn't have said "just", given just how useful this bad boy can be at times - it'll get any obstructing material out of your windshield in no time. There are a few things to keep in mind when purchasing a windshield washer, though: make sure you buy windshield washer designed to work in freezing temperatures so that it doesn't freeze up.
Also, you should probably get yourself one of the really high-grade stuff. You know, the ones with a lot of cleaning power. You don't want a mediocre windshield washer fluid.
Keep a Pair of Socks in the Glove Compartment - You'll Need Them One Day
Socks in the glove compartment - it's like having a secret weapon at your disposal. You never know when you might need them - maybe your shoes get wet in a sudden rainstorm, or maybe you need them to walk through some extra-slippery ice. Either way, having a spare pair of socks on hand can be a lifesaver. Plus, there's something undeniably satisfying about having a little emergency kit in your car, just in case.
It's like you're a modern-day MacGyver, ready to tackle any sock-related crisis that comes your way. So go ahead and stuff a pair of socks in your glove compartment - you'll be glad you did. Just make sure to replace them every once in a while, because nobody wants to be stuck with a smelly, crusty old pair of socks.
Use a Broom to Quickly Brush off Snow
Okay, so this one is kind of self-explanatory. It may even be a bit trivial, but it's definitely worth mentioning due to just how simple it is. If you ever find yourself needing to get some relatively light and fluffy snow off your car, and you don't feel like breaking out the big anti-snow guns, you could always just take a broom and push it down on your car until the snow slides off.
This trick, unfortunately, only works on snow of the light and fluffy variety. If you're dealing with thick, hard snow, you're probably going to have to whip out the big-boy anti-snow measures.
Always Try to Park in the Sun
It's crazy just how self-explanatory this is, and yet people don't do this. It's almost obvious, trivial if you will; and yet nobody does this. What's the deal with that? If you ever feel as though your car is just way too cold and that there's way too much frost and ice on it - just park it in the sun! It really is that simple, trust us. You won't regret it.
The sun will do a lot of the ice-scraping work for you. And you won't find yourself scratching your car with a spatula or wasting money relying excessively on the defroster.
Wax On, Wax Off to Have Your Headlights Shine Brighter Than Ever
If there's one thing every good car owner that truly cares about his ride knows, is that you should definitely wax your headlights every now and then. "Why," you ask? Well, to protect them! All that harsh winter weather will totally wreck your headlight lens if you aren't careful. The wax helps create a protective barrier between your headlights and the external world. Your lights will shine brighter than ever.
So make like the Karate Kid and wax-on, wax-off your headlights. Trust us, you'lll thank us the next time you're driving down a dark winter road. You'll be able to see everything that's going on.
Bundle up and Save Money on Car Heating
It's great that you're trying to take proper care of your car, but don't neglect yourself in the process! A well-insulated car will only get you so far if you're going around in a T-Shirt and Crocs. Make sure you layer up! Seriously, no matter what kind of ingenious heating device you have installed in your ride, if you're not wearing the right kind of clothes, it'll all be for naught.
A proper coat and a pair of good gloves will go a long way in terms of saving you money on heating up your car.
Use Cat Litter to Clean up Any Garage Oil Spills
Oh, the many uses of cat litter! It is a most curious substance, indeed. Upon first glance, one may assume its sole purpose is to absorb the odorous excrement of our feline friends. But no, it is a versatile tool, worthy of a place in every automobilist's arsenal. Need to dry up a spill of oil in your garage? Sprinkle on the cat litter and let it work its absorbent magic.
And if you seek to freshen the musty air within your vehicle, why, simply open a bag and stick it in your glove box. Your car may smell like a litter box, true, but at least it will not smell like last night's Big Mac dinner.
Having a Full Gas Tank Is Extra Important for Winter Safety
A great way to prevent any unwanted winter tragedies or nightmare scenarios is to keep a nice tank full of gas on you when you can. You know what they say - a full gas tank is a happy gas tank, and a happy gas tank is a happy car owner. You don't want to find yourself in some kind of precarious situation with barely any gas. It's too cold to be waiting for a tow truck.
So if you know that the weather is going to turn pretty bad, you should probably go on the offensive and fill up your gas tank before it gets way too cold to drive anywhere.
Keep Duct Tape in the Car for Emergencies
Duct tape: the ultimate hero of the household. It's like a magical, sticky fairy that appears out of nowhere whenever there's a crisis in need of fixing. It is also a great firestarter, in case you find yourself stranded outside on the road in the winter. Just cut off a strip about six inches long, with the width of a matchstick, fold it in half so that the sticky sides are together, and light it with a match. The adhesive will burn magnificently.
It's the duct tape that holds the world together, and we're all just lucky to have it in our lives. Let's take this as an opportunity to thank duct tape for everything it has done for us - thank you duct tape!
Get Snow off Your Car the Old Fashioned Way
Winter driving is difficult, but it can be a little simpler. Just never forget the most basic trick ever invented for getting snow off your car - giving the hood a good old whack. It'll get snow off the other parts of the car, too. You know what they say - if it ain't broke, don't fix it. And this old and reliable method has been helping car owners get the snow off of their cars for years.
Sure, there are other, smarter ways to get the snow off of your car, but this one is just so simple and so effective. So don't be afraid to give the most obvious solution a try, too.
Clean Headlights Is Extra Important in the Colder Months
Yo, if you want to stay safe on the road this winter, you gotta keep your headlights clean! Trust us, you don't want to be driving around with snow, ice, and salt all up in your grill. Just grab a cloth or sponge and give them a quick wipe down. Or, if you're feeling fancy, mix up some water and soap and get all that grime off.
It's especially important during the winter because, let's be real, it's always super foggy and gross outside. Don't be that dude with the dirty headlights, keep 'em clean!
Keep Hand Sanitizer in the Glove Compartment
In these days of viral uncertainty, it behooves us all to keep our vehicles as sanitary as possible. And what better tool to accomplish this task than the humble bottle of hand sanitizer? It can serve as a potent disinfectant for those high-touch areas within your car. Give your steering wheel, door handles, and dashboard a generous spritzing to rid them of any unseen germs.
And if you're feeling particularly paranoid, you may even use it to purify your car keys before returning them to your pocket. But be warned, dear reader - keep this flammable liquid well away from any open flames.
Getting Ice off Your Car Can Be Dangerous
So if you're like us you've definitely tried out a wide variety of martial art moves on your poor, frozen vehicle to get the ice off. The thing is, is that you ain't no Karate master. Sorry to break it to you, but that's probably true. So we suggest that you be careful with your ice-chopping techniques. The human body is quite a fragile thing, after all.
Basically, just use common sense - if you feel as though the move you're trying to pull off is a bit over your pay grade, it probably is.
Gotta Keep Healthy for That Snow Shoveling
Since the dawn of man, people have been complaining about the winter, and with good reason - winters can get pretty rough. The harsh weather conditions just make for more work. That often includes a lot of physical work, such as shoveling snow off your car or driveway, so make sure you get in shape before the winter, and perhaps go easy on the coffee and cigarettes.
This becomes more important the older you get - you could maybe try to lay off the coffee and cigarettes for a couple of hours before you engage in physically taxing winter chores such as shoveling snow.
Chalkboard Erasers Aren't the Only Useful Tool in the Classroom
When it comes to de-fogging your windows, there are a couple of things you could do. You could always resort to the tried and true method of wiping your window with your sleeves, but that'll make them all moist and unpleasant. You could also dig up a few old tissues lying around your car since who knows when, but that takes time and is also kind of gross when you think about it.
So why not go ahead and get yourself a nice little whiteboard eraser to clean up your windows with? It will definitely save you quite a bit of time and effort.