Winter can really be a drag as a driver (or a slide if you’re not careful). It’s already wet and cold, but if you don’t play your cards right you can end up late to work, frozen out of your car, stuck or struggling to see. It’s imperative to make sure that everything is in working order (see “Tips for Getting Your Car Winter Ready During Fall Car Care Month”) so that driving your car is as safe as possible in the upcoming winter wonderland. But making things a little bit easier on yourself is never a bad idea either. Keep these household items in handy this winter to save some time, frustration and glide through winter like a pro:

  1. Keep Old Socks in Your Glove Compartment – Socks have more uses than just keeping your feet warm. After putting your wipers up to avoid them freezing to your windshield, slip a pair of socks over them to avoid them getting icy all together. No more slamming them against your windshield or trying to see through the streaks on your windshield! A second pair of old socks is perfect for sliding over your shoes in case you DO get stuck, they’ll give your feet extra traction as you push.
  2. Keep Gallon Sized Baggies Handy – Not only are you going to need something to put your wet socks in, but sliding a gallon sized bag over each of your mirrors can make your mornings easier too! Simply slide the bag off of your mirrors in the morning and voila! No more time spent scraping them free of ice.
  3. Shaving Cream – One of the toughest parts of the winter months is finding the heat-to-fog ratio that you’re comfortable driving with. Turn the defrosters on full blast and you might get a little too warm inside the vehicle. Turn them down and it might be hard to see. Insert shaving cream. This handy household substance has the same active ingredients as anti-fog solutions, so simply rub a thin layer on your windshield and windows and then wipe it off to keep them fog free without having to ride to work in a sauna.
  4. Put a 20lb bag of kitty litter in your trunk – This old, tried and true method is great for helping you get some traction if your vehicle is stuck. The weight of the bag can also help keep traction in your back tires.
  5. Put a small rug over your windshield – The same concept applies here as with the wipers and baggies: less time scraping ice, more time inside of your warm car. What’s more awesome is that the rug can double as a way to get you unstuck in the slush or ice.
  6. Spray the rubber on your doors with cooking spray – This keeps the doors from freezing shut. We call that a win.
  7. Wipe your keys down with hand sanitizer – If the locks in your car door freeze, the alcohol in the sanitizer can help melt the ice inside the locks.

Keep this list handy, because once everyone notices that you no longer hate driving in the winter so much, they’re going to want to know how you became such a master of the ice. Happy driving! And as always, stay safe.