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Wednesday, February 28, 2024
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All Fogged Up

2 min read

Most local drivers find their windscreens and windows fogging up when they drive through a bad storm. Blurry windscreens and windows can present a hazard to drivers relying on a clear vision to navigate wet roads. Keep a clear sight with these tips to keep the blur away.

As you drive in the storm, your vehicle’s windows and windscreen start to fog over, obscuring your field of vision. Everything gets blurry under the pelting rain while the surrounding glow of the headlights of the other cars around you start to meld together into some yellow, orangey kaleidoscopic mess, further impairing your vision.

Why do windscreens and windows fog badly during inclement weather? The fog on the windshield comes about when the high humidity inside the cabin interacts with the colder temperature outside. It is not dissimilar to water droplets condensing on the side of a glass that contains a cold drink.

Due to this reason, most of the fogging is typically caused by condensation within the inner surface of the car’s windshield or windows, not the outside. Therefore, wiping the glass on the outside has very little effect in solving the fogging issue.

Fortunately for drivers, preventing your windscreens and windows from fogging up during heavy rain is not rocket science. Here are some steps you can take to avoid dealing with foggy vision.


While it might be more intuitive to adjust the temperature during cold, rainy weather so as to stay warmer in the car, that has the effect of making the cabin get more moisture from your respiration, increasing internal humidity levels and consequently exacerbating the fogged-up windows. Instead, you should turn up the aircon to match the outside temperature. This creates a dehumidifying effect that reduces internal moisture levels, causing the fog to recede.

While fogging may be typically caused by condensation in the inner glass layers, it is not uncommon to have it happen in Singapore, given our high levels of humidity. Dirty glass also contributes to the problem as oil, dirt and grime attract and retain moisture. Drivers should thus ensure that windscreens and windows are cleaned regularly. The blades of windscreen wipers should also be maintained as they will also spread grime across the windscreen if their cleanliness has not been kept up.

Available widely from workshops or petrol stations, applying these on glass surfaces including side-view mirrors will help in reducing the build-up of condensation. However, you need to make sure the surfaces are clean before the application.

 

Rubber is the main material used in the weatherstrippings of the doors and windows of vehicles. These can wear away over time, allowing moisture to find its way into the cabin. Do check with your trusted mechanic to see if your weatherstripping is still in good condition.