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Our favorite is the Moyidea 36" Extendable Ice Scraper Snow Brush for its useful features, durability, and overall effectiveness.
The best ice scrapers quickly clear your car of stubborn ice and snow, so you can spend as little time as possible in frigid winter conditions. With so many options available, it can be challenging to differentiate between effective ice scrapers and those that will only create more hassle.
To find the best ice scrapers, we tested 21 models in icy conditions while evaluating them for performance, durability, features, ease of use, and value. For expert advice, we also spoke with a representative from the Snow & Ice Management Association (SIMA). They shared tips on how to find an effective ice scraper, as well as the importance of having one in your car.
“Driving a vehicle without clearing the ice first is dangerous—for [you] and other drivers,” says the SIMA representative. “It compromises your vision and you may be unable to see your blind spot, what's in front of, next to, and behind you.”
The expert says it's important to look for an ice scraper with a long reach and a brush on the other end—and our top choice, the Moyidea 36" Extendable Ice Scraper Snow Brush, fits the bill. We like its range of functional features, impressive scraping performance, and durable, well-made design.
Moyidea 36" Extendable Ice Scraper Snow Brush
Best Overall Ice Scraper
Who it’s for: People who want an effective, easy-to-use ice scraper and snow brush.
Who it isn’t for: People who want a very compact ice scraper.
Clearing snow and ice from your windshield in frigid temperatures is far from enjoyable, but we found that this tool from Moyidea makes the task easy and more efficient. The Moyidea Extendable Ice Scraper Snow Brush earned the best overall spot on our list because it cleared our testers' car windows in 10 minutes in 20-degree Fahrenheit temperatures. It only took one pass to cut through each section with a thin layer of ice and snow.
“I noticed that with my previous scraper and similar conditions, I would need to use two passes, but this scraper seems like a real one-and-done kind of product,” says our tester. “The scraper end seems extra well-made so that it felt super easy to scrape with."
This ice scraper features a bevy of useful features, including a pivoting head, dual snow brush end, a storage bag, and a cushioned grip. And since it’s extendable, this tool adjusts from 27 to 36 inches so you can reach farther if needed. When our tester compared this ice scraper to generic models, they found that it had a “wider and thicker design,” which felt sturdy and high quality. Since this is an extendable model with a snow brush attachment, people who want a compact ice scraper should choose another option from our list.
Price at time of publish: $30
Length: 27 to 36 inches
Weight: 1.19 pounds
Features: Pivoting head, snow brush, extendable, cushioned grip
Snow Joe Original 2-in-1 Telescoping Snow Broom and Ice Scraper
Best Budget Ice Scraper
Who it’s for: People who want an inexpensive yet multi-functional snow and ice removal tool.
Who it isn’t for: People who want a traditional bristled snow broom on their ice scraper.
While an ice scraper with plenty of bells and whistles can help you clear off your car, this simple, budget-friendly option from Snow Joe can tackle the job just as successfully. During our testing, this ice scraper cleared off a car in less than 10 minutes at temperatures below 30 degrees Fahrenheit. It was effective overall, but note that we utilized the defrost settings during two of the three times we tested it. Unlike traditional ice scrapers, this pick has a scraper on one end and a foam broom for clearing snow on the other.
We especially appreciate that the length of the pole is padded, which makes it easy to grip and use with or without gloves. “This scraper feels very sturdy and is made well,” says our tester. “The ice scraper was really effective at taking off the ice and I love the brush on the bottom because it helps brush it off. [It’s] very easy to use and does not take up a lot of room.”
Price at time of publish: $25
Length: 33 to 52 inches
Weight: 1.5 pounds
Features: Extendable, snow broom
Hopkins Subzero 51" Ice Crusher Snowbroom
Best Ice Scraper With Squeegee
Who it’s for: People who want a versatile tool that can also be used to wipe away melted snow and ice.
Who it isn’t for: People who want a large ice scraper.
The Hopkins SubZero Ice Scraper features three convenient tools—a snow broom, squeegee, and scraping end—all in one. In our testing, we were able to clear two inches of snow from the car in about 10 minutes, first using the broom to brush off fresh snow before utilizing the ice chipper to scrape away frozen snow. “After I broke up the ice, I simply used the bristles to scrape it away," says our tester. "Overall, it was fairly easy and quick to clean the entire car."
The opposite end of the tool has the snow brush and squeegee—the latter of which can be used to remove excess liquid from melted snow and ice. Even though our tester found this ice scraper to do “a phenomenal job at getting your car clean without straining your body,” we wish the ice scraper was larger.
Price at time of publish: $28
Length: 51 inches
Weight: 1.1 pounds
Features: Foam grips, ice chipper, snow broom, squeegee, pivoting head
Birdrock Home Snow Moover 55" Extendable Foam Snow Brush and Ice Scraper
Best Ice Scraper for Large Vehicles
Who it’s for: People who want an extendable ice scraper that can easily clear a large vehicle.
Who it isn’t for: People who want a very compact ice scraper.
During our testing period, this extendable ice scraper cleared our car in under 10 minutes—with no defrosting or direct sunlight—three times. “The ice scraper part is sharp so it gets the ice off with barely any extra passes over the ice; it's a one-and-done [tool],” says our tester. One end of the extendable handle features a scraper, while the other has a foam snow brush that rotates 270 degrees so you can clear hard-to-reach areas.
“The pole can extend so you can get to higher or farther places without much work,” our tester says, adding that “the handle is ergonomic with padding to help with gripping.”
Though this pick is better suited to large vehicles due to its size, each component can easily detach for more compact, convenient storage. It’s also available in a smaller size that extends up to 39 inches in length.
Price at time of publish: $38
Length: 31 to 55 inches
Weight: 1.98 pounds
Features: Snow brush, extendable, detachable ice scraper, foam handle
OxGord 2-in-1 Ice Scraper & Snow Brush
Best Small Ice Scraper
Who it’s for: People who want a compact ice scraper that takes up little storage space.
Who it isn’t for: People who need to clear ice and snow off of large vehicles.
For those who want a compact ice scraper that’s easy to stash in the car, we recommend this compact 17-inch option from OxGord. During two testing periods, it took us less than five minutes to clear snow and thin ice from the car. Even though we weren’t able to test this pick on thick ice, our tester is confident that the ice scraper will “hold up fine.”
It has a simple, two-sided design with a scraper and snow brush, and we found it to be quite sturdy and durable in our testing. “The ice scraper has [a] great grip pad in the center that makes holding this really easy and comfortable—I felt like I was able to get a very good grip on it,” our tester says.
While this is the smallest selection on our list, our tester “was able to clear the middle of the windshield without any problems.” That said, if you have a large vehicle, truck, or van, we highly recommend a longer ice scraper that will allow you to reach farther.
Price at time of publish: $12
Length: 17.5 inches
Weight: Not listed
Features: Snow broom, padded handle
Hopkins SubZero 14038 38" Crossover Super Duty Snowbroom
Best Curved Ice Scraper
Who it’s for: People who want an ice scraper with a curved design for added leverage.
Who it isn’t for: People who want a heavyweight ice scraper with added features.
During our testing, the Hopkins SubZero 38" Crossover Super Duty Snowbroom cleared a layer of snow and ice in about five minutes with no defrosting. We found that the 38-inch curved handle is quite ergonomic, making “it easy to reach hard-to-get spots on your windshield and top of the car,” according to our tester. The curved design also allows the user to have a bit more leverage when trying to clear heavy snow.
We appreciate that the handle is “cushioned and easy to hold” as well as long enough to “reach all sections of the car including the middle of the windshield.” While the scraper made it very easy to clear snow from the car, removing the ice required a bit more effort—but that is to be expected.
Price at time of publish: $28
Length: 38 inches
Weight: Not listed
Features: Pivoting head, snow broom, foam grip handle
Our top pick is the Moyidea 36" Extendable Ice Scraper Snow Brush, which removed ice and snow with one pass during our testing. In addition to its durable, well-made design, it offers bonus features such as a pivoting head, an extendable handle, and a padded grip.
Our Testing Process
To compile this list of the best ice scrapers, we distributed 21 models to testers to use and evaluate for six weeks. While real-world testing is dependent on weather, we aimed to have testers use the ice scraper at least three times.
Upon receiving the ice scraper, our testers unpackaged it and examined it for overall quality, while noting whether it had features like ergonomic handles and snow brushes. They also took note if the ice scraper felt sturdy or lightweight.
After the first snowfall, our testers tried using the ice scraper without turning on their car’s defroster—if unsuccessful, they used the defroster and tried again. They timed the process from start to finish, until each window of their car was clear of all ice and snow. As our testers cleared their windows, they assessed how efficiently the ice scraper worked, noting if it could cut through thicker ice and whether it was comfortable to hold. If the scraper had any additional features, our testers evaluated whether these features made the product more efficient.
Once finished, our testers recorded the approximate thickness of the ice, amount of sun, outside temperature, defrost settings (if applicable), and how many windows they cleared in total. They repeated the testing process at least two more times (weather permitting) before seeing the product price—the median price of the ice scrapers we tested was $17. Our testers then scored their ice scraper for its performance, durability, features, ease of use, and value, which is based on the product’s performance in conjunction with its retail price.
How to Shop for Ice Scrapers Like a Pro
It’s important to take stock of how much room you have in your vehicle to decide how big of an ice scraper you can accommodate. If you have ample storage space in the trunk or bed of your car, then a longer, heavy-duty ice scraper can assist in clearing off snow drifts from the roof and de-icing large windows in less time. But for those with small vehicles or limited space, a compact ice scraper will be much less cumbersome. We like the OxGord 2-in-1 Ice Scraper & Snow Brush, which is a 17-inch model that’s great for anyone looking for a small, easy-to-store tool.
Basic, no-frills ice scrapers can still get the job done, but there are also models with added features that make clearing snow and ice off cars much easier. SIMA recommends looking for a two-in-one ice scraper and snow brush. “Depending on the weather, a light snow can be removed with the brush,” the representative says. “The brush is also helpful for removing snow from rooftops, front and rear of the vehicle.”
Additional features include heating capabilities, LED lights, squeegee attachments, rotating heads, extendable lengths, interchangeable pieces, glove attachments, and crusher or chipper attachments. While shopping for an ice scraper, consider what features might aid in the ever-daunting task of clearing off your car. For example, early morning commutes might call for an added LED light, while large cars or trucks could benefit from an extendable arm.
It’s also worth noting heated ice scrapers aren’t worth buying. In our tests, we found that they’re not any more effective than using the defroster on your car. They also took a while to heat up, and every moment counts when you’re outside in the cold.
Ease of Use
When it’s a frigid day and you need to clear off your vehicle, finding an ice scraper that makes quick work of the task is a top priority. Design features like ergonomic handles and cushioned grips can make clearing ice more comfortable. (Our testers were particularly fond of this Hopkins SubZero model, which has a curved design and comfortable-to-hold handle.) We also recommend looking at the weight of your ice scraper—lightweight models might be difficult to maneuver, while heavier options can tire out your arms.
More Ice Scrapers to Consider
SnoShark: This scraper features a durable metal telescoping handle and nylon paddle that quickly cleared snow during our testing. While beneficial for large vehicles covered in snow, it was slightly less effective at clearing ice.
Joytutus 61.3″ Ice Scraper and Long Handle Snow Brush: With a scraper, snow brush, squeegee, telescoping end, storage bag, padded handle, and included gloves, this pick is ideal for someone who wants a versatile yet affordable option. It performed well throughout testing but did require a few passes on snow and thicker areas of ice.
Questions You Might Ask
Do ice scrapers damage windshields?
With proper use, an ice scraper won’t cause any damage to your windshield—but there are a few precautions to follow to ensure that no cracks, scratches, or chips occur. Be sure to use a plastic scraper, because other materials (like metal) can cause damage. We also recommend using only light to moderate force while clearing any ice on your windshield, because tapping, hitting, or heavy pressure can compromise the glass. If the ice is thick to remove with moderate force, defrost the windshield until the ice is more pliable.
What makes a good ice scraper?
The best ice scrapers will have a durable, semi-sharp edge that can push up the edge of ice buildup on your windshield. Based on our testing, we prefer a rigid plastic material, which is hard enough to combat thick ice without causing damage to your windshield. The reverse sides of ice scrapers typically have teeth that you can drag across the ice to create depressions that weaken the buildup and make for easier scraping.
The SIMA expert we spoke with also recommends choosing an ice scraper with a longer reach for more versatility. “There are some that are detachable so you can use the scraper for smaller spaces (side mirrors, etc.),” they say.
What is the easiest way to scrape ice off a windshield?
You can easily scrape off ice using a scraper, squeegee, or snow brush, depending on the thickness and strength of the buildup on your windshield. If your car is coated in snow and ice, first remove the snow with a brush or foam snow broom before tackling the ice. Using the defrost setting on your vehicle before starting will also make the process easier.
“After clearing ice with the scraper, if there are chunks or leftover ice chunks on the windows, remove them so they can't fly off and possibly hit and damage other cars,” the SIMA representative says. “Beyond the ice, make sure you remove snow from the car to prevent blowing, which can reduce your visibility and the visibility of those behind you if it blows back toward them.”
Take Our Word for It
This article was written by Quinn Gawronski, associate commerce editor for Real Simple, who has three years of experience writing and editing product reviews and roundups. To compile this list, we tested 21 ice scrapers and evaluated them on performance, durability, features, ease of use, and value. For expert tips, we consulted with a representative from the Snow & Ice Management Association.
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Read the original article on Real Simple.