Heavy-duty, 360' ice-scraper

Having grown up in Toronto, I'm accustomed to morning car de-icing being a lengthy and exhausting process involving a lot of grunting and scraping (I'm always amazed to see Londoners whose idea of de-icing gear is the edge of their credit-card for the odd frosty morning). I haven't tried one of the Innovation Factory's IceDozer Mini 2.0 scrapers, but holy crap, it sure makes the plastic scrapers I grew up with look like wimpy little toys. It gets mixed reviews on Amazon, and seems like it's one of those love it or hate it deals:

This serious tool packs 360 degrees of ice clearing performance, including 13 Flexiblade scraping fingers, and Tenderizers for softening up the hardest ice that you’ll find on your windshield.

Other features include a combination Squeegee/Brush, the IceNotch (for clearing windshield wipers) and the all-new Brass Frost Peeler – glass safe but particularly effective when dealing with the most annoying frost coating (the kind that seems ‘painted on’). All of this in an ergonomic package, including the PowerGrip which incorporates a Wrist Wrest for extra power and comfort.

Innovation Factory IceDozer MINI 2.0 with Brass Blade, Made in USA (via OhGizmo)


      1. If that’s true, I wonder if manufacturers are using lower quality glass these days.  Growing up in Michigan in the 1970’s, my dad would use hot water to de-ice his windows nearly every day in the winter, and never, not once, did he get a crack.  Was auto glass more crack resistant back then?

        1.  Answer is “yes and no”. Auto glass was glass, today it’s tempered glass. Tempered glass is pretty tough, and when it breaks it doesn’t create deadly spears, which is why they switched.

          But tempered glass aspode into little bitty chunks if you nick it where “regular” glass would get a nick or small crack.

          1. IIRC, side windows and backlights are made of tempered glass.  Windshields are laminated glass, with sticky stuff between layers of glass so that it holds together and doesn’t shatter into tiny bits when broken.

        2.  I’d say that the main concern would be that you’d have water on your driveway, which could freeze into ice. How did your dad deal with that, or was it gravel?

          1. I can’t do that because the water drains down into the engine compartment, and I f’ed up the window washer line last time I tried it. Thankfully winters in SLC rarely get that bad.

      1. I guess it all depends on the temperature differential between the glass and the water.  If one excites the molecules enough where the exterior of the glass expands juuust enough more than the interior, you’ll get a crack.  So I don’t think I’d dare try it in subzero temperatures.

  1. Some ways to reduce the amount of manual labor necessary to clear windows that doesn’t require running the engine for 15 minutes:

    a) Blanket over the windshield. You can buy custom dealies that fit your windshield if you like, but pretty much any cloth will work. It just needs to actually contact the glass to slow down how fast it loses heat.

    b) Park so the rising sun will hit your car. It only takes a few degrees to soften the ice so the wipers can push it away. Really only works if you’re within 10 degrees of the freezing point.

    c) If you’re getting frost on the interior side of the glass, you’ve probably been tracking snow in, which gets melted by the heaters and raises the humidity. To fix that just leave the windows cracked over night to allow the moisture to escape. 

    d) Turn off the heaters and roll down your windows about five minutes before getting home. If it’s snowing, this helps avoid developing those hard-to-scrape streams of ice.

    e) Lift the wipers off the glass. This keeps meltwater from freezing the blades to your window which is a serious pain in the butt.

    If you have a garage to put your car in, none of this applies. :)

    1. Can I reiterate the value of the first point by xzzy?
      1.  Take old blanket or bedsheet.
      2.  At night, drape over windshield.  (if desired and sheet is big enough, drape across side windows)
      3.  Frost forms on blanket.
      4.  In morning, remove blanket.
      5.  Repeat however many times required to form a habit.

      Having lived a large portion of my life in Saskatchewan, wherein a large portion of the year involves frost, this has saved me much physical energy, potential injury, gasoline/emissions, and has never ruined a blanket.  (or a windshield)

      1. Maybe if it’s a lead filled blanket… I grew up in the frozen wastelands of North Dakota, most days a blanket would be blown away before you could even fully spread it across a windshield.

    2. When I was nine, my family moved from San Diego to Bigfork, Montana.  It was the only time in my life I lived in a snowy environment.  I’d sometimes watch my dad’s morning automotive-preparation rituals, including several of your tips.  He had to plug in a block heater at night, too.  We actually had a garage under the house, but the driveway to the street was steep and the car (a 4-cylinder front-wheel-drive 1974 Renault 12 wagon) couldn’t make it up the driveway if it was wet or icy, so my dad had to park in front of the house in inclement weather.

      The following April we moved back to San Diego and never looked back.  As a kid, I loved farting around in the snow every day.  But as a grownup, I’d have hated it as much as my dad obviously did.

    3. Even those of us who have garages but live in snowy states have to leave our cars out in the cold sometimes.  Excellent tips, xzzy!  Thanks!

  2. The variation in scraping edges could be nice. Most scapers only have 2 edges + a brush.

    But my first concern is will I miss having a longer handle?

    1. But my first concern is will I miss having a longer handle?

      I sure would. I’m “only” 5’9″, and I have to extend mine to pop those sheets of ice off my roof.

      People who don’t clear that roof ice, btw, are evil.

    2.  I was wondering the same thing. By the looks of it, your hand fits into the middle, which seems to mean you’re going to end-up with ice and frost all over your hand and up your arm.

    3. I was also wondering about the no-long-handle-thingy. Even if I could reach to the middle of the front window (I don’t) I don’t want to be touching the car sides with my clothes (I kind of like them dirt-free). And I don’t want to be scraping heavy layers of snow directly on my gloves, either.

  3. A 360 foot ice scraper?  I could scrape my neighbor’s windshield!  Or maybe just a 360 minute scraper for detailing the little corners of your windshield.  =P

  4. Credit card? Well, I wouldn’t. Supermarket loyalty card, expired bank cards, stupid club membership cards they feel the need to send me each year, Gredi card sized things that ones held a SIM card? Sure.

  5. I had a windshield scraper with a brass blade.  THE best thing for scraping a thick layer of frozen rain off your windshield.  That is, until the blade gets dinged. 

    What exactly are the term of that Lifetime Guarantee, eh?

  6. No handle, no care. Even if you are 6’5″ and drive a hatchback, like me, a scraper without a long handle and brush means you have to use your arm to push the snow off the top of the car, meaning (a) your arm gets wet, (b) your feet get wet, (c) your jeans get wet, or all of the above.

    It might work ok in places with more frost than snowfall, but in the high country of Colorado, that piece of junk rates as a toy at best.

    1. Judging by the written description, the author lives somewhere with weather very similar to what we get in the Detroit area.  Months of frost with many variations in the frost characteristics.  I would find something like this useful because of where I live and the predominant attitude in this neck of the woods that the garage is where you keep your toys, not your daily driver.

  7. Here’s what I do about windshield ice: born in Southern California, will stay in Southern California. Works every time.

  8. Okay Cory has posted about a 360 foot ice scraper and a 360 foot camera.  BB please get a font that has a degree symbol for him!

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