Safety starts before you drive, and that means taking precautionary steps to make sure you can see clearly on the road at all times, especially on the freeway. Rain-X is a great supplement to windshield wipers, which can leave behind streaks, reducing your visibility. Here’s a quick guide on how to apply it properly for long-term effectiveness but first, let’s learn what it is.
What is Rain-X?
Rain-X is a hydrophobic (water resistant) repellent formula designed to fill the tiny pores in your windshield, creating an ultra-smooth, water resistant surface. It works with the natural airflow of the car to help immediately disperse water, sleet, and snow from your windows.
What you need
- One bottle of Rain-X Windshield Rain Repellant
- Two clean cloths: preferably, one microfiber cloth, and one lint-free cloth or paper towel
How to apply it
Any contaminants on the windshield will affect how Rain-X works, so the best time to apply it is after you’ve washed and dried your car. If there is wax or any other detailing product on the windshield, remove it with a soft, abrasive cleaner. Rain-X is also most effective when applied in the shade, during fair weather temperatures, no less than 5°C (41°F).
You don’t need too much; don’t soak your rag or have it dripping down the window. A thin layer is enough. Apply Rain-X to one half of your windshield at a time with a clean cloth, preferably microfiber. Work in firm, circular motions until Rain-X is fully and evenly applied to the entire surface. Let it dry for 5-10 minutes.
Take a paper towel or a lint-free cloth and buff, moving from bottom to top. There will be a slight haze on the windshield at first. You’ll know you’re finished when the haze is gone and the windshield is bright and sparkling. If you prefer, you can repeat this step again for greater effectiveness. It’s important to make sure the haze is completely gone before you drive, to ensure maximum visibility on the road.
Finally, check and clean your wiper blades. If they are deteriorating, replace them. Whether or not you get replacements, you should clean the blades with quality glass cleaner and a cloth. This will guarantee your Rain-X lasts for a long time.
Apply Rain-X to the side and back windows for even better visibility.
When to reapply
You’ll know Rain-X is applied properly when water hits the windshield, beads up into perfect circles, and quickly runs away. If you start to see irregular shapes, or the water seems to hold better to the window, it’s a sign that Rain-X is wearing off. Time to reapply!
Using Rain-X might allow you to drive in the rain without using your wipers, but you should always have them ready, clean, and in good working condition as a precaution. And remember: in bad weather it’s just as important to see as it is to be seen, so make sure your lights work, and keep them on. Drive safely!
This article originally appeared on YourMechanic.com as How to Apply Rain-X to Your Windshield and was authored by Brent Minderler.