Defrosting car hack could see drivers rub onion on their windscreen

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With temperatures well below zero in most parts of the UK, many drivers will be waking to a frozen car. While many could be overcome with dread, there are some simple tips that can make the process smoother, easier and faster. One of those tips involves using an onion. 

Rub onion on top of the windscreen

Onions have a similar effect to vinegar, and if you don’t have an onion in the cupboard, then drivers should try potatoes instead.

The sugar molecules from these vegetables can work to break down frost as soon as it forms on the window.

Drivers should cut an onion or a potato in half and then rub it generously all over the windows and windscreen the night before and this should drive the frost away.

Heat up the car

If drivers have forgotten to do any of the steps above to prevent ice from setting, then heating up the car is the first step. Whatever motorists do, they should not be tempted to use their wipers on the icy windscreen as that won’t de-ice the car in any way and is more likely to damage it.

Instead, motorists should turn their front and rear demister on max and the ice will start to melt from the heat. Drivers can then wipe away any excess water with their wipers, and return the fan to normal.

Also, drivers should not be tempted to go inside the house to stay warm as it’s not unusual for thieves to steal defrosting vehicles from driveways.

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Use a proper car ice scraper

If drivers are in more of a rush, they can start to scrape the ice as the car warms up. However, don’t be tempted to cut corners and grab the nearest flat object, like a bank card.

Attempting to scrape bits of ice off with anything other than a car ice scraper could just result in a scratched windscreen.

Use a deicing fluid

Try to keep a bottle of de-icing fluid either in the car or in the house to speed up the ice scraping process.

It can be bought at most supermarkets and petrol stations. While there are many homemade alternatives that are just as effective at removing ice, nothing quite beats the ease of the real thing.

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Fill a bag with warm water

If drivers don’t own a car ice scraper or have de-icer fluid to hand, then this is another option to try for a quick result.

It may sound obvious but it’s always worth mentioning that motorists should never pour boiling hot water onto their windscreen.

While one in five of drivers admitted to doing this, even pouring lukewarm water can cause car windows to crack, especially if they are already chipped. Instead, pour some warm water into a ziplock bag and then rub the bag over the windscreen.

This hack went viral on TikTok last winter because it takes the ice off in seconds.


Drivers might not like the sound of wasting a bottle of vodka on their car but depending on how desperate they are at that moment, it will do the job.

The alcohol content in vodka makes it a great de-icer in minus temperatures – even if it drains the alcohol supply.

It’s important to remember driving with limited vision during icy weather conditions is not only dangerous but can also land drivers with a £100 fine and three points on the licence.

With this in mind, it’s a good idea for motorists to familiarise themselves with these top tips and begin implementing them into their daily routine.

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