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Defrosting Serious Ice?

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Posted by Jean B. on January 16, 2006, 12:10 am
My poor Prius has no shelter and got very iced up last night.
  I scraped off what I could, which was not nearly enough to
drive, and went and turned on the defrosters.  But when you
just sit there trying to defrost, it seems to only use the
battery, so I had to turn off the car when the charge was
perilously low.  Sooo, how do you work around this?

I did use the spray deicer a few times this year--and that's
fine as long as you get frost, snow or ice on the windshield,
but it left gunk on the glass the time it remained dry--gunk
that did not come off in the car wash or when I tried to wash
it off, so I am somewhat reluctant to go that route.

BTW, my windshield wipers are still encased in ice and
unusable, so I couldn't stay out when it started snowing again.
Jean B.

Posted by Bill on January 16, 2006, 1:31 am

Hi Jean,

I used to leave my climate control in automatic however I find the automatic
setting woefully inadequate for winter driving conditions because it doesn't
direct warm air to the windshield early-on.  At first I tried pushing the
windshield defrost button on the steering wheel and, given a few minutes,
that works ok but once the window is cleared and I push the button again so
I can warm my feet, the window again fogs.  To overcome this, once the
window is clear I manually select windshield plus feet and manually select
the center fan speed.


Posted by Michael Pardee on January 16, 2006, 4:14 am
It is a bit of a problem. If it helps, some spray de-icers contain ethylene
glycol (which sounds like what you had), but some are only alcohol and don't
leave the gunk behind. The active materials will be listed on the label
since both are toxic :-(   Contrary to popular belief, glycol antifreeze is
very biodegradable - it is only us stupid vertebrates that metabolize it to
methanol and get metabolic acidosis.


Posted by Bill on January 16, 2006, 4:20 am

FWIW ethylene glycol antifreeze is a pet killer.  It is sweet and they die
from licking it from the garage floor.  Less than a teaspoon will kill the
average cat.

Posted by Michael Pardee on January 16, 2006, 4:34 am
Yes, sadly. The metabolic acidosis destroys the kidneys and brings a
horrible death. It is especially bad in cats, since they have amazingly
small kidneys and must have a high protein diet, which is very hard on
kidneys. Apparently death from kidney failure is as common among cats as
death from cancer is among dogs.

OT but important - grapes and raisins are toxic to dogs, although vets don't
know exactly why yet. http://tinyurl.com/5lg4m


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