(780) 955-1991
E & R Auto - Frozen Car?

What to do when your car is frozen.

Patience is a virtue

If you are facing a frozen vehicle, here are a few tips.

Mother Nature can be particularly evil here in Alberta. If you're not lucky enough to have a garage, have you woken up to a thick blanket of ice encasing your entire vehicle? It's not fun trying to 'break into' your car after an ice storm or too much humidity, so here are a few tips to help you out. After, of course, you give your work a call. There is no way to do this quickly without damaging something so you might be late.


  • Don't use hot water! It can crack glass or plastic due to the drastic change in temperature.

  • Don't use a hammer or rubber mallet. That kind of force will almost frozen carguarantee a dent.

  • Don't use a heat gun. You could melt seals or plastic. Even a blow dryer is dangerous. Use it only as a last resort.

  • Don't pull too hard on a frozen handle. You could break it.


Frozen Locks: it's a good idea to keep lock de-icer on hand. There are sprays you can get at most hardware stores or even Walmart that are pretty good in this area.

  • Heat the key with a lighter or hair dryer.

  • Use a hair blow dryer on the lock but do it with caution.

Frozen Doors: Try to pry it open or gently push on the door close to the edges. Try all other doors, as well to see if they are easier to open.

  • Try room temperature (or cold) water. Keep it contained to the doorframe, starting at the top and continue to push gently on the door. Washer fluid can work for this, too.

  • Ice scrapers can work to chip the ice away but be careful on the finish of your vehicle.

  • If you have a remote start, let your vehicle run for a bit. Hopefully, your heater is on so it can help thaw from the inside.

  • Wait until spring, this is my favorite option but it won't work for everyone :)

Once you get into the vehicle and let it run for a bit, the heater should help the remaining door seals thaw. Some people put petroleum jelly along the seals but this will degrade and break down the rubber. Try a silicone lubricant instead. There are many silicone sprays or liquids on the market.

If your seals are damaged, this could cause them to freeze because they allow moisture to get in. If this is the case, call us at 780-955-1991 and we'd be happy to repair that for you or anything else that needs work.

Technically, only 6 weeks until spring (crossing our fingers that happens) so drive safe and stay warm.

Categories: winter driving

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