A few would-be throw away items can come in really handy this winter as you prepare yourself and your automobile for the cold months ahead.
See also: Ways to save on travel.
Consider these simple, money saving tips for repurposing some common household rather than tossing them in the trash:
- Do you have sock or mitten that's missing its mate? Whatever you do, don't throw that away! Instead, cut a slit in the tip of it, slip the handle of a windshield ice scraper through the slit, and then secure it with duct tape to attach it permanently to the ice scraper. That way, when you forget your gloves and go to scrape snow and ice off your windshield, your hand will stay cozy and warm.
- Always carry a couple of unwanted CDs (the kind you listen to music on, not the kind you have in the bank ... those are never unwanted) or old floppy disks in your auto safety kit or glove box. In a pinch, you can (carefully) snap one in half to use as a makeshift window ice scrapper. Or, in a real emergency, if you're in an accident and stranded somewhere off the road in your car, a CD can be used just like a mirror to signal for help and attract the attention of those passing by.
- Carry carpet remnants, old towels or - best of all - a worn-out rubber bathmat(s) in your trunk to put under the wheels if your car is stuck in snow or ice and you can't get any traction. Jam the items in front of the stuck wheels while the wheels are NOT in motion, then slowly step on the gas. Also, carry a coffee can or plastic bag full of fireplace ashes in the trunk as well, since they too can be poured around snow/ice bound tires to provide extra traction.
- And if you'd prefer not to have to scrape your icy windshields at all on cold mornings - even if you do have a cozy spare-sock-ensconced ice scraper! - try covering the windshield overnight with leftover pieces of bubble wrap held down with the windshield wiper blades. Just place the wrap bubble side down. The bubble wrap can be easily peeled away in the morning, leaving windows ice and frost free.