While snowy days can make for some beautiful scenery, they can also create a lot of annoyances when it comes to driving. From freezing rain and sleet covering your vehicle in ice, to foggy windows that reduce your visibility, there are many ways that winter can interfere with your daily commute.
We’ve put together a list of our top winter driving hacks to help make your days a little bit easier, no matter what the weather.
Lift Your Wipers
While it may make your vehicle look a bit strange, lifting your wipers can actually make your mornings a bit easier. It means that they can’t freeze to the windshield so that you’re actually able to use them when you need to. If freezing rain or sleet is in the forecast, give yourself a little extra insurance by putting socks on your wipers. These help create a barrier between the weather and your wipers, and reduce the risk of them freezing.
Invest in a GOOD Ice Scraper
We’ve all seen the $5 and under ice scrapers at discount stores, usually placed by the registers so that you grab them without thinking about their quality. But the fact is that, the cheaper they are, the more cheaply they are made. This may not seem like a big deal – until we get a heavy freeze and your windshield has more than just the usual thin buildup of ice or snow. A good, heavy-duty ice scraper can tackle this thick ice more easily, and is far less likely to break or fall apart.
If your scraper does break while you’re using it, here’s another hack: use a credit card or a plastic spatula instead. Either can usually get the job well enough for you to get on your way. Just make sure to pick up a better scraper on your way home.
Put Bags Over Your Outside Mirrors
Do you often deal with ice buildup on your external mirrors? Hack this problem by putting plastic bags over them. You can use grocery bags or go more heavy-duty and opt for freezer zipper bags. No matter which you choose, secure them with a few rubber bands or bag clips so they don’t blow away.
Prevent Ice Build Up Instead of Scraping
Tired of having to scrape ice off of your windows every morning? Invest in a deicer from your local automotive store, which helps prevent ice buildup with a few sprays. Don’t have any on hand? You can still hack this issue by mixing 3 parts white vinegar to 1 part water in a spray bottle, and using that as a deicer instead.
Thaw Frozen Locks With a Straw
One of the most irksome problems that ice can cause is freezing your door locks. If this ever happens to you, here’s a simple hack: use a straw to blow on the ice. The heat of your breath should be enough to melt the ice, and the straw helps concentrate the heat so it works better than just breathing on it. For stubborn or thick ice, you can squirt some hand sanitizer on the lock instead. It will help to melt it more quickly so that you can get on the road.
Prevent Foggy Windows with Cat Litter
Yes, you read that right – cat litter can help to prevent fog or frost on the inside of your windows. This hack is pretty easy: fill an old sock with cat litter and leave it in your car. If you opt to put it on the dash to target your windshield, make sure to take it down before you drive anywhere. The litter will absorb excess moisture inside your vehicle so that it can’t form fog or frost.
We hope these simple winter driving hacks will help you simplify your morning routine this winter. And when it’s time for your vehicle to have any repairs or maintenance done, here’s another hack: stop by your neighborhood Jiffy Lube® anytime, no appointment necessary! Our highly trained technicians are always available to help you with all of your regular maintenance needs so your vehicle stays running strong.
Jiffy Lube® recommends following manufacturer recommendations, where applicable, for maintenance schedules and service intervals.
Not all services are offered at each Jiffy Lube® location. Please check with your local Jiffy Lube® service center for specific services offered.
Go to ChicagolandJiffyLube.com for services and locations in Chicago, Chicagoland Suburbs, Northwest Indiana and Southeast Wisconsin.
Jiffy Lube® Service Centers are owned and operated by independent franchisees.