A fifth of motorists have confused windscreen cleaner with coolant and used them in each other's place by mistake, new research has shown.
According to a survey by Kwik Fit, six million drivers in the UK are guilty of making this error, which can have dire consequences for their bodywork and engine.
When it comes to putting coolant in the screenwash reservoir, motorists will see their paint deteriorate, with not even car waxes able to stop the damage.
The company added that there are environmental implications as well.
More than 60 per cent of those questioned said they had no idea confusing the two could harm their car and Ian Fraser, chief executive at Kwik Fit, said it is a concern that so many people have so little knowledge.
"What's worrying is the lack of awareness amongst motorists of how doing so can inflict serious damage to their cars, particularly during these conditions when coolant and screenwash are in high demand," he added.
According to a survey by Swinton Insurance, van drivers are more likely to use windscreen cleaner and other care products than those who own cars.
Posted by Anne Simpson