Then along came that curious grid of wiring across your back window. A button on the dash activated the system, and right before your eyes you saw the fog disappear. Ice would met, snow stayed away. It was a small miracle. Some cars actually tried versions of this on the windshield, but it proved a bad idea. But the defroster became standard issue for rear windows, and the world was a better place. That is, until something put a little nick or scratch in one of those delicate lines across the glass. Then, the system stopped working. It was widely accepted in the car business that a car more than 5 years old would likely have an inoperative rear defroster.
The days of having to live with a non-functioning grid of defrost lines are over. The latest defroster repair kits are amazing, addressing almost every possible problem that can arise in your system. The first step is always troubleshooting. You need to figure out why your defroster isn't working. The complete repair kits come with diagnostic tools like a special test light, too. Before you start repairing, you should check your fuse to be sure it's not a simple blown fuse problem. The two most common problems with rear defrosters are a break in the conductive lines and the deterioration of the spades that connect the grid to your car's wiring. Both of these can be repaired, and we will cover the repairs on the following pages.