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Over the weekend I drove to the in-laws in Latvia and for the last 150 miles or so the exterior temperature was down to -4C and it was snowing. The snow got on the wipers and a combination of the ambient temperature and wind chill meant my wiper blades turned into a couple of blocks of ice. With the curvature of the windscreen it meant that they were frozen into the shape of the screen so were only clearing a couple of small strips and not even in contact with the screen over most of their length. Before setting off I'd filled the screenwash with neat wash supposedly good for down to -20C but it can't clear the screen if the wipers aren't touching it.

What do people do that live in places where this sort of temperature is common so they can still see where they are going?

On a side note, having seen the news reports of a state of emergency being declared in parts of the UK due to the snow, there's heaps 3 or 4 feet tall either side of the roads here where it has been ploughed but not gritted, you just drive on the remaining snow. I'll also change my review of the Kleber Citilander tyres I fitted last week. I said they were pretty good in snow, they aren't, they are absolutely excellent in snow, I had to try really hard to get the ABS to kick in, it goes where I point it and stops no worse than on a wet road.

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I think they are called beam blades, traditional winter blades are also ok (while the rubber cover holds).

th.

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I think that occasionally the conditions are just right for the wet snow to ball up on the wipers. This doesn’t happen often, but when it does I put the defrost (demister?) on full blast, also HVAC in Economy mode so the AC stays off.

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This doesn’t happen when it’s actually cold, as the snow brushes right off instead of melting and refreezing on your windscreen.

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I've never seen winter blades in the UK, probably because we don't get sufficient cold weather to justify them (in the same way as most people never fit winter tyres). I might try getting some replacement wiper blades locally and see what they are like.

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You can get heated screen washers, with a heater in the screen washer tank. They are an option on Scandinavian cars. I am not sure whether my Volvo has one fitted, I need to check. Maybe it was just Saab. The rally boys also fit them retrospectively to clear mud, snow etc.. Apparently very effective when doing stages through the forest. I have seen them for sale years back when I was into Ford Escorts. Your next project Richard.

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https://www.amazon.com/Trico-22-1B-Exact-Wiper-Blade/dp/B005LLL85E

Long time since I used something different than beam blades like these, for exactly the reason described in #1

th.

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The higher spec Classics had heated washer nozzles, or at least my '93 LSE had them, but it seems that was something that was dropped on the P38. I'll pick up a pair of beam wipers locally and see how well they work.

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if the snow and ice are sticking to the wiper blades and arms , try some wd 40 or CRC even diesel , what ever you have .spray it onto the arms and it might stop it icing up . just an idea , its what they use to put on the plow so the ice and snow flies off.

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https://www.amazon.com/THERMALBLADE-Heated-Silicone-Safety-Wiper/dp/B00K6KPPXQ

Heated blades in various form have been around for some time...

th.

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Found some beam blades in the local filling station, Bosch ones for 9 Euros each so got a pair of them. Fitted them this morning (and they certainly look a bit odd) but today has been the first day it hasn't snowed so not had chance to try them yet. Forecast is for more snow for the next couple of days though so I'll find out how well they work.

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You’ll only find out if it’s fairly warm as it was during your last storm. If it’s colder the snow will just sweep away easily.

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I've heard of one who turned off the heat and get ice cold air on the windscreen so that it would be as cold on the inside as on the outside. No melting and no problem. A bit cold though..

th.

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Yikes, that’s way too drastic for me. I like a warm car!

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I just ran across this (from a VW forum).
https://frostfighter.com/clear-view-front-wiper-defrosters.htm
Obviously this can be an issue on any vehicle. Probably not worth the price for a lot of us.

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so is any of these ideas working, during this global warming period that we are in🤣

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Heated windshields do the same job as those frostfighters.

Won't help with the problem described in #1 as that is about ice building up in the blade.

th.

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I was thinking it may get the lower area of the windshield warm enough to melt the ice from the wipe blade, but maybe not.

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The result is in. Fitted the beam blades and found not a lot of difference with ice still building up on them causing them to freeze in the curvature of the screen so not clear it that well. However, most of the ice was blue suggesting that Tesco own brand washer fluid that claims to be good down to -20 isn't. When I set off from Latvia yesterday it was -8C and it snowed right through till almost Warsaw in Poland when it turned to sleet and ultimately rain but now I've arrived with step-daughter in the Netherlands where it is +9C but raining, they are much quieter than the original ones. 4 litres of Polish -20C screen wash may have helped too.....

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Most of our washer fluid in Canada is rated to -35C or colder. It doesn’t melt the snow that accumulates on/under the wiper blades. I would have expected that at -8 it would have been cold enough for that not to happen but it seems that it still did.