How to Thaw a Frozen Windshield Bottle

Dirty windshields can cause accidents.
Dirty windshields can cause accidents.

During winter months, having a clear view of the road ahead can be the difference between arriving safely to your destination and being involved in a car accident. The salt used to prevent roads from freezing can cause a visibility hazard on your windshield, and winter weather can freeze your windshield washer fluid, making it more difficult to keep your windshield clean. Freezing can actually crack your windshield bottle if left unattended, so it is important to know how to prevent this from happening.

Things You'll Need

  • Bucket
  • Hot water
  • Large funnel
  • Siphon pump
  • Anti-freezing windshield washer fluid
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    • 1

      Fill the bucket with hot water. Hot tap water works well, but do not boil the water. Adding boiling water to something frozen is a sure way to cause cracking and other damage.

    • 2

      Open the hood of your car and locate the windshield washer bottle.

    • 3

      Remove the lid from the windshield washer bottle and slowly pour the hot water into the bottle using the large funnel.

    • 4

      Allow the mixture to sit for 10 minutes, or until the all the fluid has thawed. You can test this by turning on your car and trying to spray your washer fluid.

    • 5

      Use the siphon pump to remove all of the fluid from the washer bottle. You do not want to leave plain water in the bottle as it will definitely freeze again and likely spilt your windshield bottle in the process.

    • 6

      Fill the empty bottle with anti-freezing washer fluid. This will prevent freezing in the future.

Tips & Warnings

  • If you do not have time to replace your washer fluid, you can use the heat from your engine to thaw the windshield washer bottle. Simply turn on your car and allow to warm up for about 10 minutes prior to using the washer fluid.

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  • Photo Credit Grant Faint/Photodisc/Getty Images


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