How To Remove Ice From Your Car Windows & Windshield

Outside of the obvious, like using an ice scraper or turning your car on and letting the heater and defrost setting run for a while first, you can also buy de-ice sprays and liquids from places like AutoZone or Walmart.  You can also make your own de-icer spray bottle or liquid.

The below methods for removing ice from your window will:

  • Melt ice and frost
  • Protect against re-freezing
  • Work fast
  • Help clean your windshield

Vinegar & Water Mixture To Melt Ice

Does vinegar and water mixed together help remove ice from a window or windshield? Yes. The truth is that by adding particles to water you lower the freezing point of the water. You could use salt or sugar or anything else that forms as a solution and mixes with water. Vinegar just so happens to be a good cleaning agent as well, so why not clean and de-ice your windows at the same time?

The molecules of the solution you are spraying on your window must move faster than the molecules of the ice, so warm water with vinegar (2:1 or 3:1 vinegar to water ratio) works well as a de-icer.

How Fast Does The Vinegar & Water Mixture Work?

It simply unfreezes the water, making it easier to scrape off with a rag or ice scraper. It does not solely remove ice by itself just from pouring or spraying the liquid on the ice.

Will It Prevent Freezing By Spraying It BEFORE It Freezes?

By spraying the solution on your window, it can help reduce the chance of freezing and make it easier to scrape the ice off in the morning.

Will The Vinegar Damage The Windshield?

There is a rumor that vinegar will develop ‘pock’ marks on glass or will somehow damage your glass. Have you ever seen a ‘pock’ mark on a glass vinegar bottle? Probably not. The chance of vinegar damaging your glass from temporarily spraying your window with it a few or even a few dozen times per year is almost 0%.

Steps On Making De-Icing Spray With Water & Vinegar


  1. You can get a 24 oz. spray bottle for about $2.00 at Walmart – Walmart Spray Bottles
  2. Combine 3 cups of cheap vinegar and 1 cup of warm water into spray container (if you make your own bottles often, maybe use food coloring also to help identify the bottle, along with a label)
  3. Stir or shake them until the vinegar dilutes
  4. The chances are very low, but melting ice quickly may cause a window to crack, so have the defroster on as well
  5. Spray the de-icer on the window while using an ice scraper to remove the ice

Is There A Best De-Icer Spray To Buy For Windshields?

It is less expensive to make your own, but if you don’t have time for that, the Prestone De-Icer at Walmart is good, you can also find it at AutoZone.

Can Alcohol Be Used To Help De-Ice The Windshield?

alcohol for de-icing windowsYes, anything that dissolves in water can be used. You may also try a rubbing alcohol solution with warm water, which also works well to de-ice windows. Isopropyl Alcohol can be picked up anywhere, such as Walgreens, for about $3-$6 per bottle.

Just mix 1 part water with 2 parts Isopropyl alcohol in a spray bottle, and spray away! You’ll watch it literally melt right off the glass!