How to keep windows from fogging up in the winter

How To Keep Windows From Fogging Up In The Winter

Eliminate Foggy Winters During Wintertime

Winter brings a lot of inevitable things, one of those being fogged-up windows! For a long time, I wondered why this happens and if there was anything I could do about it. Not that it’s the biggest problem ever, but it is annoying to me. And if you find yourself being annoyed by this too, I am here to help! In this article, I will go over some ways I have found to reduce or eliminate this problem.

So, how do you keep windows from fogging up in the winter? Follow these easy tips to avoid the windows in your home getting fogged up this winter:

Washing Windows Tips
Washing Windows Tips
  1. Keep the heat low in your home, especially when it’s cold outside
  2. Alcohol and vinegar both work as de-foggers for your windows
  3. Keep outside humidity low if possible
  4. Use a squeegee
  5. Use a hairdryer
  6. Window insulating kits

I know you’re wondering how exactly to do these and how they work. So let’s dive in and discuss them further! Before you know it, foggy windows in your home will be a thing of the past!

How to keep windows from fogging up in the winterKeeping The Heat Down

Of course, I am not recommending you have no heat running during the cold months. However, if you keep it low enough, it might help prevent your windows from getting too foggy.

I have found that around 60 degrees work best for me. If you have a programmable thermostat, see if you can set your home’s heat somewhere that is optimal for this time of year.

You could always use a space heater wherever you are hanging out at. Or switch it up for a while when you get cold and then put it back down.

Of course, your comfort should be more important than your windows. So feel free to try another tip on the list if this one isn’t right for you!

Natural De-Foggers

There are a few natural de-foggers that you can use to keep fog from building up on your windows. The most common ones I have tried and work great for me are isopropyl alcohol and vinegar. Here’s what you will do:

  • Simply take a few drops of isopropyl alcohol on a tissue or cloth
  • Rub it all over your windows
  • Watch the fog go away!

 

For me, this has always worked. It might end up leaving some streaks but I think that’s better than having to deal with foggy windows. You can use whatever cloth or tissue you have around. I prefer tissues to ensure the liquid won’t drip off the edge of my window!

The other natural de-fogger is vinegar. Same steps as before, but instead use vinegar. If you are worried about it stinking up your home, keep an open box of baking soda nearby that you can occasionally dump out and replace with a new one.

Keep Humidity Low

This is another simple one. All you have to do is keep the humidity in your home at a low level when it is cold outside.

An easy way to do this is to run a dehumidifier when the weather drops below freezing where you live. If you don’t want to run any extra appliances, just open up some windows every now and then to let some of the humidity out.

You can also turn on your bathroom fan if you have one, as well as open up the doors to other rooms in your home that don’t currently need heat.

This will help keep air circulating through your house, which means getting rid of unnecessary moisture. Also, make sure to keep the bathroom door closed during and after you shower to keep all that steam from escaping!

How to keep windows from fogging up in the winterUse a Squeegee

This is a tip I have used for years and it works great. All you have to do is take a rubber squeegee, dip it in hot water so it’s damp all over but not soaking wet, and use it to wipe down your windows as dry as possible.

This will prevent fog, but also some water spots on your windows. But once they dry, you can simply rub them off with your fingers if you want.

I would recommend trying the natural de-foggers first or using a dry microfiber cloth or paper towel instead of the squeegee to wipe things down.

Hairdryers

If you have a hairdryer, you can use it to defog your windows in no time! Just turn on the warm setting and start going over your foggy windows with the hairdryer 30 seconds or so at a time.

This will help speed up the natural de-foggers by evaporating water faster. Just be careful not to get too close, or you’ll risk burning the outside of your windows.

Your hair dryer should have a cool setting, so if you only have one on hand, just hold it further away from your window and run some warm air over it that way. Also, keep in mind that this might not work for everyone depending on the type of hairdryer you have!

Window Insulating Kits

This tip is last on the list because I think it’s the least easy/feasible for most. There are kits you can buy that will let you turn your windows into a type of thermal insulator.

This is great if, like me, you live in an apartment and can’t very easily open up the windows to cool down your home or use natural de-foggers. All you have to do is take these little kits and put them up against your windows to prevent fogging.

However, these will only work if you have the proper tools for installing them up on your window. I would recommend trying one of the other options before resorting to this. But if they are an option for you, definitely give them a try because they can be very helpful!

Bonus Tip: Warm Water & Paper Towels

Instead of using a squeegee or hairdryer, some people prefer to use warm water and paper towels. Just take a clean, dry paper towel and fold it up so it’s not quite as thick as your palm. Then get it in warm water so it’s wet but not dripping. You might want to wring out the paper towel a bit after you dip it in the water.

Once your paper towel is ready, use it to wipe down all of your windows as dry as possible. As soon as they’re dry, you will no longer have fog on them! You can also try using a clean cloth or microfiber towel instead of paper towels if you prefer.

How Often Do I Need To Do These Tips?

Again, all of this is completely optional so the frequency will depend on your preference! If you want to try these tricks, I would recommend doing them at least once or twice a day when it’s really cold outside. If you only want to do them when you are having guests over, that’s great too.

If you don’t even feel like trying any of these de-fogging tips and want the quickest fix, try sticking a bowl of water by your window. It will help to keep the air warmer, so you’ll have less fog on your windows or none at all!

How to keep windows from fogging up in the winterWhat Causes Windows To Fog Up?

Ever wonder why windows fog up in the first place? There are a few different reasons for this. It can be from humidity, the cold outside or lack of heat, or even cooking!

The biggest reason is usually from lack of heat though. When cold air comes into contact with the warmer inside air of your home, that causes it to fog up.

How To Clean Windows In Wintertime?

In addition to keeping my windows fog-free, I want to keep them clean too of course! I have a few tips for how to clean windows in wintertime.

One of my favorites is to use vinegar and water! Just mix some 10% white vinegar with 90% water in a spray bottle, and you’re all set! If you have a squeegee, it works great to wipe down your windows with this mixture.

Another method for how to clean windows in the wintertime is by using newspapers. It’s free and eco-friendly too! Just take some old/newspapers or magazines you don’t need anymore, cut them up into little pieces, wet the pieces with some water, and use them to wipe down your windows.

Any Tips For Car Windows?

Most people have had to deal with foggy windows in their car too. You can try all the tips listed above for car windows too! However, some other tips specific to de-fogging car windows include:

  • Turn your car on and run the AC for a few minutes with all windows closed to bring down the temperature in your car. If you don’t have an AC, use a hairdryer or hand-held fan to get some airflow going.
  • If it’s not too cold outside where you are, consider opening up the car door and sitting in your car for a few minutes to let some heat escape.
  • If it’s raining or snowing outside (or even if not), try spraying de-icer on your windows before wiping them down with water.

 

I am sure you won’t have any more trouble with foggy windows now that you know all these good tips! Keep your heat low, try using a natural de-fogger if you must, use a squeegee to wipe things dry, and always keep the air in your home as dry as possible. With these tips, I think you will get your windows clear without too much trouble.

Matt McWilliams
experthomereport@gmail.com

Hi there! My name is Matt and I write for Expert Home Report. I enjoy writing about everything related to home improvement, home tips and DIY. In my spare time, I'm either spending time with my family, doing a DIY project or learning a new skill.