KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Messing with the car is one of the biggest pains during the winter every year, especially after an ice event.
There are lots of dos and don’ts of the road, and we’ve heard them all before. Raise your wipers ahead of time. Lay a blanket or shield down on top of the windshield. Clear all the frost off the windows before driving. Keep the tire pressure up.
However, here are a few tricks you may not have heard of that could keep you a little more sane in 2021.
1. Cooking spray
How many times have you pried at your door in freezing temperatures, afraid your handle might break off, just to enter your car? Water in the door jam freezes to the rubber and metal, and it can take some serious muscle work.
Instead of repeatedly body slamming your own vehicle, try spraying the rubber before a winter storm with some cooking spray, like PAM. The oil will coat the rubber, and the doors will be able to open and close freely. Yes, you may still have to crack the outer layer.
2. Don’t ice scrape the car
Yes, do scrape the windshield and windows. No, don’t scrap the hood or any other painted part of the vehicle. Ice scrapers can scratch your paint job.
True, you’ll get the ice off, but you’ll put on something more permanent. Ice is temporary (and usually melts off the hood, anyway).
3. Sun visors for defrosting
You’ve scraped the ice off the windshield, but the battle isn’t over. You’ll have to deal with a frosty view until the defrosters kick in. That’s unfortunate for cars with big cabins and inefficient air systems. Suddenly, you find yourself peering through a little whole in the bottom of the glass, or worse, sticking your head out of the window.
However, you can increase efficiency (and save yourself from frostbite) by using your sun visors. By rotating them into the down position, you can create little shields to help keep the warm air up front. Instead of the air escaping into the cab, some will be deflected back against the glass.