What is a windshield water repellent, and how do I use it?

A nifty product we could all use during the rainy season
by Leandre Grecia | Jun 4, 2021
PHOTO: Shutterstock

With the rainy season coming right up, it’s time we talk about tips that can help fellow motorists drive safely through the storms.

We’ve covered the usual stuff like the dos and don’ts of driving in the rain. This time around, we’d like to talk about a type of product that we could all use this time of the year: windshield water repellents.

Windshield water repellents are arguably one of the niftiest products you can use to rain-proof your daily drivers, yet we believe they’re also one of the most underutilized. Usually coming in gel, wax, or liquid form, it’s a product you apply to your windshield to make it hydrophobic.

After treatment, water simply beads up on a car’s windshield, in turn, greatly improving visibility when driving through the rain. When you’re going at a fast-enough speed, the raindrops will then roll off the glass—no need to turn on the wipers anymore.

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What type of water repellent should you use, then? There are a lot of different brands available at your local store already. If you want to know which ones works best, it’s a good idea to either ask others about their experience with different brands or to try out the different products yourself.

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Now, before you get to the treatment itself, you should first make sure that your windshield is absolutely clean. A simple wash will do, but since you’re already here, we suggest you go the extra mile and thoroughly clean your windshield while you’re at it—you can read more on how to do that by checking out this previous article.

When it comes to applying the product to your windshield, the process may vary. As mentioned earlier, water repellents come in different forms. Spray-on liquids are usually the easiest to use. Gels and waxes, meanwhile, may require some buffing after the initial application. More often than not, the process is pretty straightforward—just follow what the box says.

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How long the treatment lasts will also vary depending on what product you get. Some protect your windshields for weeks, some for months. Sure enough, you’ll notice once the effects of the water repellent start wearing off, so you’ll know once it’s time to reapply a new layer again.

What other products do you find useful during the rainy season? Share them in the comments. Likewise, you might want to read up on other relevant tips on how to safe on the road this rainy season, such as how to keep your wiper blades clean.

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