Cold Weather Effects on Windshields and Windshield Wipers

Winter can be tough for cars. Tire pressure is decreased, batteries can struggle to deliver optimal current, and fluids can be less efficient. On top of that, the cold weather can have a significant effect on your windshield and windshield wipers.

Cold weather isn’t great for your car’s performance and efficiency, so you have to be proactive in planning ahead for your daily winter commute. The proper prep work will keep your car running smoothly into the sunny spring season.

How Winter Affects Your Windshield

Your windshield can begin to crack for a number of reasons. The biggest is from gravel, rocks, or debris from a semi-truck in front of us, but the next common issue for a windshield cracking is the pressure buildup from sudden temperature changes.

Glass is sensitive to temperature, which causes it to expand or contract from a temperature change. So, extreme temperatures, whether hot or cold, can be bad for your windshield. This is why parking in a garage or in shade can help keep your windshield intact.

In the winter, when you get to your car in the morning and the temperature is freezing and your windshield is possibly covered in snow, it’s recommended to gradually let warm air defrost your windshield. This will make the temperature change less sudden and help your windshield not be significantly affected.

While also using your car’s defroster, you should scrape ice and snow off of your front and back windshield. Scrape horizontally against the glass instead of picking at or stabbing the ice. You won’t want to accidentally chip or damage your windshield.

How Winter Affects Your Windshield Wipers

With snow, condensation, and hail, you’ll likely be using your windshield wipers more frequently in the winter than you are in the summer or fall. Windshield wipers are also fighting against frozen elements and a thicker windshield, which can make them deteriorate or even break faster. Don’t try to excessively use wipers to combat ice and snow, because the ice and snow will win. Take the extra minute to defrost your windshields and scrap snow and ice off. This will make for a safer ride and longer lasting wiper.

You may even need to consider replacing your windshield wipers before heading into the winter. If you notice excessive streaking, wet spots, vibrations, or noises when you use your wipers, it’s likely time to replace them. 

Another area where windshield wipers can struggle is with wiper fluid. Because of the excessive use and freezing temperatures, windshield wiper fluid can not work as well or last as long as you would like. It can be helpful to have any extra fluids you may need, such as coolant or wiper fluid, handy in the garage.

Address Cracks or Chips Right Away

If your windshield gets a crack or chip during the winter, you won’t want to let it sit for a while before getting fixed. The excessive temperature change in the winter will make the crack spread faster, and once a windshield crack reaches a certain length it can’t be fixed. The entire windshield will need to be replaced. Contact the team at Arizona Auto Glass to efficiently and quickly solve your issue. We can visit you on-site or you can stop by our store.

About Arizona Auto Glass

Arizona Auto Glass is a locally owned automotive glass repair and replacement company. We handle all of your windshield needs and can even recalibrate your advanced driver-assistance systems. Find out why we are the most trusted service provider for all types of automotive glass in the Greater Phoenix area.

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