Gather the snow clearing gear. You don’t need much but what you do need must be capable of doing the job without scratching your car. Shovels have a tendency to scrape cars, even if you’re careful because it’s easy to slip and it’s hard to know where the snow ends and the car starts until you’ve cleared enough snow.
Start digging out the car. Depending on your personal strength, the amount of snow piled up on a car, and the temperature, this task can take anywhere from 5 minutes to an hour. It will be much faster if you can get a helper or two on the job.
After a major blizzard, snow may have filled the engine compartment. If so, prop the hood open, remove the snow, dry the spark plug wires and leave the hood open to let everything dry off. Also check your windshield washer outlets to make sure they are clear as you may need to clean your windows often during winter driving.
Try to unlock door with the key if the car doesn’t have a remote. As soon as you can get into the car, if your locks aren’t frozen, start the car and turn on the heat and defrosters. The heat from the heater and defrosters will help the car to warm up and melt snow and ice while you continue to clear it off. Make sure the exhaust pipe is clear and only have the engine on while clearing snow when the car is outside, never when the car is in shelter as the build-up of carbon monoxide is toxic.
Clear snow away from the tailpipe. The exhaust must be able to flow freely from the tailpipe or it may build up in the car’s interior.
Free up the wipers, if frozen. If they were running when you stopped the car, it may damage the wiper motor if you start the car and they are not free to move.
Start the car. Turn on the heat and rear defroster. Wait a few minutes for the car to warm up. Then get in and drive the car as usual, provided your driveway is clear.