Is That a PICKLE? Are Michigan Drivers Using Juice to De-Ice Cars
I thought I had stepped into an alternate dimension. There I was, long snow scrapper in hand, chipping and scratching the ice that had accumulated on my windshield the night before. It was during this Pure Michigan routine that I looked over and witnessed a fellow driver open a jar of pickles.
"This is an odd time for a snack," I thought to myself, shivering as I reached to de-ice my windshield wipers. Having never seen a man eat pickles while cleaning off a car coated with Michigan winter, I slowed my usual snow and ice removal pace to see what would happen next.
Does Pickle Juice REALLY Work as a De-Icer in Michigan?
Instead of reaching for a breakfast pickle, this man raised the jar of pickles and slowly poured a stream of its juice onto his car's windshield. He stopped, put the lid on the jar, and then did a lap around his car with a snowbrush while the smelly fluid crept its way down the car's front window. Pickle Man, as I now refer to him, then got into his vehicle without giving the windshield a single scrap.
After starting the car I watched in amazement as he turned on his wipers and 75% of the coated ice was gone! Does pickle juice really de-ice your car and if so, why am I just hearing about this now?
The simple answer is yes, pickle juice has de-icing properties because it's loaded with brine (water saturated with salt) and vinegar. The Farmers Almanac even recommends pretreating your windshield before a winter storm to make removal easier the next day.
According to Dollar Stretcher, this combo is double trouble for ice but it's also important to rinse the mixture off to avoid problems:
Like the road salt that’s typically thrown on the street during a snowstorm, the salt and vinegar in the above mixtures can damage your car’s finish, especially if left unwashed. As soon as the temperature gets above freezing, give your car a good rinse to make sure there’s no salty residue.
No pickles or maybe you're one of those people who likes to drink the leftover juice? No problem! Get similar results using a 50/50 mix of rubbing alcohol and water in a spray bottle.
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