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4 Signs Your Car Defroster Needs Maintenance

It's wintertime in the Midwest, which means a lot of snow and ice. In addition to making sure your car's heat and high beams are up to snuff, you should also check on the defroster. You could be in big trouble if it stops working in the middle of the chilly season!

properly functioning defrost in vehicle

Why is the Defroster So Important?

It's common sense to crank up the car's heat when it's cold outside. However, doing so can create condensation on the windshield, making it difficult to drive safely. When the temperature drops below freezing, a hard layer of ice can also accumulate on the windshield, obscuring your vision. A functioning defroster eliminates both of these problems. It uses the warm air from the car's heating system to melt the ice on the windshield. During the winter months, when temperatures can drop to single digits, being able to stay inside your warm car while your car’s defroster clears your windshield is an added luxury. Some cars also have a rear defroster for the back windshield. While the front defroster uses air currents to heat or cool the windshield, the rear defroster is powered by electricity.

Signs Your Defroster Needs a Repair

  1. Clogged fresh air intake or vents. Your front defroster relies on the air vents, the fresh air intake, to do its job. If one or both are blocked with debris, it could affect the defroster's performance. Keep your air vents clean and ensure a functioning defroster by using a BG product to help destroy any debris or bacteria.
  2. Faulty thermostat or heater core. The thermostat valve is usually closed, but an open one can cause your car to not heat itself properly. If your heat isn't working, neither will your defroster. This could also be a sign of a broken heater core.
  3. Broken blower. Blowers can naturally wear out over time or develop blown fuses. When the blower is malfunctioning, it won't be able to supply air to the windshield.
  4. Bad grid or tabs. Sometimes an electrical wire or tab may break off of the rear defroster. If this happens, it won't be able to draw enough power to function properly.

At Custom Complete Automotive, we strive to ensure your drive is as safe and comfortable as possible. If you suspect that your defroster needs maintenance, or to learn more about our services, contact us today!

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About the Author
Eric Riddles

Eric Riddles is an ASE Certified Master Automobile Technician who has been working as an auto mechanic since 1998 and originally joined the team at Custom Complete Automotive in 2005. Eric has numerous certifications in various aspects of car repair and spent 10 years training the next generation of auto technicians at a local high school Auto Shop classroom.

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