A simple guide to help save you those extra minutes on cold winter mornings
We’ve all been there – on those cold winter mornings where you aimlessly sit and wait for your car windscreen to clear, whilst you turn into a human Popsicle.
Nowadays, many newer cars produced seem to have the function of a windscreen heater or something similar which means drivers of these cars can usually count how many seconds it takes to clear, on their hands and feet.
But, for the rest of us, the agonising task remains a horrible daily occurrence that we Brits have become accustomed to.
Many of us think we know the best method, or have some family secret on how to de-mist our cars in record times, but we want to see whether we can help you separate fact from fiction, and show you the quickest way to clear your car windscreen…
Why does your windscreen go misty?
Let’s start with how your car gets fogged up. Often, understanding how something works can be hugely beneficial when it comes to solving the problem.
Basically, it all comes down to moisture and temperature.
When the winter months come and bring their icy, sub-zero conditions – your car too will feel sub-zero. So, whenever you get inside it, have a conversation, exhale, or burp you are bringing moisture into your car, and excess heat.
Skipping all the scientific stuff, we are now left with condensation on our windows – created when the temperature outside your car is cooler than inside.
Bam – you are left with a window that looks like a sweaty teenager in P.E class.
What is the best method for clearing your windscreen?
Right, now that you have the (sort of) science behind it all, you now can see how our method of speedily clearing your windscreen works:
1. First, turn on the heaters inside your car. But, turn the temperature down low to start off with, and gradually, increase the temperature. Turning the knob to maximum heat straight away will just blow out moist warm air, which is the opposite of what you need to quickly clear your screen.
Aim all possible vents towards your windscreen to get maximum coverage – this should help to tackle those rogue areas of fog that take a while to disappear.
2. Secondly, turn on the air conditioning (if your car has it). It’s very simple – you want to have less moisture inside your car, so go ahead and turn on the A/C. This will make the air dryer, and help speed up the whole process.
Alternatively, slightly crack open your window – this will have a similar effect on your windscreen.
3. Make sure you use turn off the air re-circulation function of your car (if you have it), to help clear the mist and bring air in from outside – if you don’t have this, then opening your window will help.
4. Wait until all your windows have cleared before driving off.
Top tip: You can now actually buy de-misting pads, which take on the water vapour and can help you speed up the process if your car is particularly prone to fogging up.
What should you NOT do to speed up de-misting your windscreen?
Lots (and lots) of people opt to use their sleeves or a small towel to quickly clear the moisture off the windscreen.
And, this does work – for a minute or two, until your breath creates more water vapour and puts you back at square one.
So let’s stay away from that one.
Should I wait until my windscreen is fully clear before driving off?
It may seem more than tempting to get on your way, after sitting idle in your car for a number of minutes, but it’s very important that you don’t even think of driving away until you can see 100% of the area around your car.
Not only is this incredibly dangerous to yourself and other people in close proximity to your car, but it is also a legal requirement to ensure that you are able to see out of your vehicle according to the Highway Code. Which could land you win a £60 and three points on your licence.
This does mean ALL windows – so whilst you may be able to see outside your front window, you should only take off when you have checked your surroundings.
Winter months often have some unpleasant side-effects, like having to factor in waiting for your car to de-mist before setting off on your journey – but follow our simple steps and you can help to speed up your daily routine.
Please assess the weather before setting off, to ensure it is safe to drive, and only drive if you have full visibility out of all windows of your car.
If you’d like to get a quote with us, complete it online now, or contact us on 0333 103 7897