The Problem: Annoying Condensation Building up on Car Windows
Every autumn through to spring I get the same old problem in my car: interior condensation. I used to put up with it or wipe the screen with a kitchen roll but that became messy and expensive. I've even used de-icer on the inside of the windshield in really cold winter months in older cars.
Last year I decided I was going to do something about it and began to research why my windows were fogging up. This led me to experiment with some different methods of keeping damp to a minimum and eventually totally ridding my old Volkswagen Golf of damp. Here are my suggestions on how you can get rid of condensation in your car, and even eradicate interior damp altogether.
Why Do Car Windows Fog Up?
Understanding how to get rid of damp in your car requires understanding of what causes it: condensation occurs when warm and humid air meets a cool surface. When people get in the car when it's very cold their warm breathe, all that warm and moisture-rich air comes into contact with a cold windshield it causes the moisture from the air to collect on the glass.
This process can also occur is moisture in the car (for example from damp seats, used coffee cups and even discarded food) is heated in the sun. The interior of the car acts as a greenhouse but without ventilation the moisture rises but can't escape the cabin and so turns to water as it touches the glass.
So we know what causes the condensation. But how do we prevent it?
Here are some of the most common causes of interior car moisture:
- Wet clothes, shoes, boots, etc
- Human breath (yes, this really does cause damp)
- Damp carpets
- Leaks from the sunroof, vent system, doors, or windows (check to see if any areas of the carpet or boot/trunk are wet)
- Hot, steamy food or beverages
- Coolant leaks into the vehicle from a heater matrix
- Rubbish being left in the vehicle
De-fogging Your Windows: The Basics
You'll need to tackle a couple of different angles if you're serious about getting rid of the fog in your car.
Condensation will go away under two conditions: either the air in your car is hot enough to keep the moisture from dropping out of it, or it is less moist overall. To get rid of the condensation, you'll need to heat the air up and make it less humid.