Motorists warned to avoid potentially life-threatening screenwash error

Now the clocks have gone back, the evenings are getting progressively darker and colder.

The frostier weather has certainly kicked in which means we need to adapt our cars. It’s important to make sure your vehicle is safe to drive before getting behind the wheel no matter what time of year it is.

However, you should be even more vigilant in the colder weather as it can create more potential problems. Motoring expert Dick Lovett says there is one thing drivers need to be looking at under the bonnet that could potentially save them from life-threatening danger.

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Speaking to Mirror, he said it's vital people are checking their washer fluid before setting off anywhere. The expert said that icy temperatures drastically affect how the liquid reacts, and it could end up freezing on your windscreen if not sorted out.

He commented: "Too much water could end up freezing your windscreen washer system, as dilution ratios for winter weather are completely different from the summer. To prevent freezing you should check the suggested dilution ratios that may be provided on the bottle, otherwise, a good rule of thumb is to ensure your solution is more concentrated during the winter period."

Lovett also urged motorists to never use boiling water when trying to de-ice their car windows. He added: "Defrost your windows and windscreen correctly – using boiling water directly on the glass could cause it to crack. "Instead, try heating your windscreen from the inside of the car and using a scraper, or de-icer."

Dorry Potter, an expert at National Scrap Car, also said there are often a lot of hacks that get around on social media at this time of year. She explained why one particular trick isn't a good idea.

Potter urged drivers to be careful when using a well-known hack that sees people fill a ziplock bag or sandwich bag with hot or boiling water, before rubbing it over the windscreen. Speaking to Daily Express, she said this can cause ‘cracks’ in the glass, which can worsen over time.

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"A hack that circulates every year is using warm water in a zip lock bag and rubbing it on the windscreen,” she said. "Motorists are advised to be cautious when applying anything heated to their windscreen as the dramatic change in temperature can cause small cracks to appear in the glass which can cause the screen to shatter when another bout of frost arrives.”

Potter warned against another method, too, added: "Drivers should never use boiling water either. Similarly, homemade concoctions should be used with care too. Using items such as a potato or onion to clear frost could leave smears or a residue on the screen which in turn could reduce the driver’s visibility, making it just as dangerous as frost to drive. It may be more sensible to stick with a deicing spray instead."

The comments come after motorists were recently warned about 'silly' car mistakes which could rack up £21,000 worth of fines.

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