I haven't had to use the rear defroster on my MZ3 yet. My wife used it today (Hail storm in NY). She said it was very weak and it wasn't melting the slush/hail on the back window. How has everyone else found the rear defroster to work?
We get some snow here, but a lot of frost and ice (when rain freezes). So far our defroster has worked pretty well - it's much better than the one on our old Escort. The other day there was a pretty thick layer of ice on our windows (the scraper couldn't even get it off!), but the defroster softened it up in 5 minutes.
My experience has been that most "foreign" cars have weak defrosters. The defroster on my Mom's old ZX2 could cook eggs on the window. My sisters Accord, my old Protege and now my 3 have weak defrosters. In a bad storm, it can't keep up with the weather. I have found that if I get it clean before I move the car that it will stay clear for the most part.
Did your wife clean the window before she started using the defroster, or did she ignore it, flip the switch and drive? You're supposed to clear the window BEFORE you start driving. Even in the manual (page 5-51), it clearly states:
2005 Mazda[i]3[/i] Owner's Manual said:
NOTE - This defroster is not designed for melting snow. If there is an accumulation of snow on the rear window, remove it before using the defroster.
Mine works fine. It certainly won't clean off an accumulation really. However, it will certainly melt frost or a thing layer of ice/snow off it. It generally keeps up with even heavy snow fall and sleet, especially if I am driving at any real kind of speed. Admitedly if I am stopped for a bit with REALLY heavy sleet and snow it will slowly accumulate.
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