How to Make Your Own Windshield Defroster Spray

  • Oct 29,2018
Man wearing gloves scraping windshield frost off his windshield in the morning sun Man wearing gloves scraping windshield frost off his windshield in the morning sun

Uh oh! Late for work this morning? How many times have you rushed outside—shirt untucked, hair in a mess, your coffee threatening to spill everywhere—only to find your car’s windshield completely frosted over?

Avoid idling in the driveway, waiting for your car defroster to kick in. There’s a cheap and easy damage-free fix you can make from things you already have at home: DIY windshield de-icer spray!

Take pesky windshield frost out of your morning routine and start your day right with one of these three solutions.

Solution #1: Rubbing Alcohol & Water

Mix one part room temperature water and two parts 70% isopropyl (rubbing) alcohol in a spray bottle, writes Wisebread. Spray the outside of every car window before going to bed.

In the morning, you’ll have an easier time scraping off the frost. If you forgot to do it the night before, don’t worry. This solution works quickly, and can still help speed up the melting process.

Solution #2: Pickle Juice

You heard us right! Pickle juice is an effective way to defrost your windshield fast. That’s because pickle juice contains vinegar and salt, which packs a one-two punch against windshield frost, according to Farmer’s Almanac.

If you're fresh out of pickles but not vinegar, you can mix three parts vinegar and one part room temperature water, notes Dollar Stretcher.

*Like the road salt that’s typically thrown on the street during a snowstorm, the salt and vinegar in the above mixtures can damage your car’s finish, especially if left unwashed. As soon as the temperature gets above freezing, give your car a good rinse to make sure there’s no salty residue. *

Solution #3: Vodka & Water

Ever noticed that vodka doesn’t freeze when you put it in your freezer? Vodka contains a lot of ethanol, which prevents it from freezing and helps break down windshield frost.

Mix one part room temperature water and two parts vodka, then either spray or pour the solution on your windshield!

How to Prevent an Icy Windshield in the First Place

Don’t have any ingredients for windshield de-icer spray? Don’t worry! There are steps you can take the night before to avoid morning windshield frost.

  • Cover your windshield at night with a blanket. Store the blanket somewhere easily accessible like your trunk or glove box when not in use.
  • Rub it with an onion. Yes, this is a real thing! Just ask the folks at Reader's Digest and Today. Rubbing half an onion on your car’s windows will coat them with a substance that prevents morning frost.
  • Park facing the east. Let Mother Nature defrost your windshield. When the sun rises in the morning, its heat will melt some of the ice.

How to Care for Your Windshield in Winter

Winter weather can damage your windshield in unexpected ways. Prevent scrapes, scratches, and dings by following these pointers for caring for your windshield in winter.

  • Defrost your windshield before scraping it. Windshield glass is durable, but forceful scraping could worsen existing cracks or chips. Defrost using one of the spray solutions above, then scrape!
  • Avoid parking under trees or branches. Snow and ice buildup on tree branches makes them prone to breaking and falling on vehicles.
  • Repair small chips and cracks immediately. Cold winter weather can cause cracks and chips to spread more quickly, so its best to get them repaired before you need a complete windshield replacement.

Check your rearview mirror, because cold winter weather is closer than it appears. DIY windshield spray might be great for morning frost, but for more serious issues, talk to our technicians about preparing your car for winter.

If your defroster isn’t up to snuff or your car’s heater is giving you trouble, come into your local Tires Plus for a courtesy check. We'll walk you through your options so you can choose the best service for you.

Up Next

Find Store

Find a Different Location

Stores Near You

Do you want to change your Preferred Store?