In the cold winter months, frozen and fogged up car windows are not uncommon. The high level of humidity inside the vehicle not only obscures visibility – it also offers ideal conditions for rust and mold. A dehumidifier should counteract this.
Do you know that too: Just got into the car and the windows are already fogging up. But why actually? The culprit is your warm breath, which condenses on the cold window glass due to strong temperature differences. But what if the car windows are already fogged up before you get in the vehicle? The assumption here is that there is too much residual moisture in your car. In both cases, a dehumidifier is supposed to help, but what exactly is that? And how can moisture in the car be avoided or at least reduced? We’ll tell you.
How do you use dehumidifiers in the car?
At a for vehicles, it is a kind of cushion filled with special granules or leak-proof gel. You place this in the car (e.g. on the dashboard) to pull the moisture out of the air. This should not only reduce fogged windows and bad smells, but also prevent mold, rust and mold stains. Depending on the manufacturer, the duration of action is between several weeks and up to three months – it always depends on the size of the vehicle interior. What is particularly practical about this type of dehumidifier is that it can not only be used in the car: The serve the same purpose in caravans or mobile homes, in (closed) garages or even inside a boat.
And the best part is: When the pillow is soaked and no longer absorbs moisture, it only needs to be dried in the microwave (or on the heater) for a few minutes – and then it is ready for use again.
This is how you prevent fogged windows
If the windows in your car fog up as soon as you drive off, the first thing you should do is turn on the fan and aim it at the windshield. It is also helpful to briefly turn the heating up to full power so that the outflowing air warms up more quickly. If, on the other hand, the windows gradually mist up while driving, this may be due to the air recirculation switch – here it is advisable to turn it off and switch on the air conditioning system (if one is available) instead. It transports the humid air from the vehicle interior directly to the outside.
In addition to the dehumidifier for cars described above, you can also use other aids to prevent fogged windows: such as a for glass and plastic panes, but which must be applied every one to two weeks to be effective. Alternatively, you can also use a microfiber window sponge in the vehicle – or a special one . In any case, it is important that you only use clean rags or towels, as dirty windows tend to fog up faster than clean ones due to the film of dirt.
Avoid moisture in the car: this is how it works
According to the ADAC, you can take a number of preventive measures to prevent moisture from collecting inside the vehicle and promoting fogged windows and mold:
- On snowy or rainy days, you carry a lot of moisture into the car with your shoes, which collects on the floor mats. Therefore, you should always make sure to take wet mats out of the vehicle and always dry them well.
- Old seals (e.g. on doors, windows and tailgates) become porous over time, allowing moisture to collect and mold to spread. For this reason, you should regularly check whether your car is still leakproof.
- As already mentioned, it is important to ventilate the vehicle properly – however, the trick with the air conditioning and heating only works when the outside temperature is above five degrees. And if there isn’t too much moisture in the car yet.
- Always make sure that the rainwater drain of the heater is free. If this is clogged with old leaves (or dirt), which tends to collect between the hood and windshield, moisture builds up inside the vehicle.
- According to the ADAC, even a poorly ventilated garage can be to blame for moisture collecting on and in the car. The drier the room climate, the better the vehicle dries in it.
- Finally, clogged drain hoses can also promote moisture. If your car has a sunroof, you should regularly test whether water is draining off it properly. If this is not the case, the hoses may need to be repaired.
I’m a recent graduate of the University of Missouri with a degree in journalism. I started working as a news reporter for 24 Hours World about two years ago, and I’ve been writing articles ever since. My main focus is automotive news, but I’ve also written about politics, lifestyle, and entertainment.