General Question

jeffgoldblumsprivatefacilities's avatar

My windshield wipers seem to defy my every action. Can you help me?

Asked by jeffgoldblumsprivatefacilities (19644 points ) February 22nd, 2010

Here’s the problem: They clear rain & other precipitation for most of their extension, but the last few inches (the area right when they switch from rotating up to rotating down) they don’t clear the area right at the center of the blade. This leaves a messy windshield right where I need to see. Hopefully that is understandable.

I have replaced the blades myself twice, and have even had them replaced by a pro once. With each change of the blades, they still will not work properly. I’m not very mechanically inclined, and I just can’t figure out how to get them to make contact right in that one spot.

It’s been a rather wet winter, and it has made for some tricky driving situations. Any tips on fixing this?

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20 Answers

lucillelucillelucille's avatar

It’s the spring that holds the wiper arm down.It’s weak.Yes,you heard it here first. ;)

davidbetterman's avatar

That spring is adjustable on some vehicles.

phil196662's avatar

Yes @lucillelucillelucille – Spring should be checked, I would also check the new wipers before installing that the entire blade slides freely in all of the little metal clips!

Always replace the blade as an assembly when they _chatter, installing them on the arm to keep them working optimally! The squeegee part gets brittle and then they don’t clean good so use some additive in the reservoir to help like http://www.rainx.com/Products/Windshield_Washer_Fluids/All_Season_Bug_Remover.aspx

Target has it!

Gets the bugs off, makes the water bead so you can see better! Safety First…

jeffgoldblumsprivatefacilities's avatar

I have not checked the springs yet, that’ll be my next move. How do I go about adjusting them? Can they be tightened, can I use some WD-40, or should they just be replaced?

davidbetterman's avatar

Better to use real lubrication, which WD-40 is not…Wd (water displacer, not lube)

phil196662's avatar

@jeffgoldblumsprivatefacilities ; Try new wipers first and see if they work right, unfortunately you would have to replace the arms because the springs can’t be adjusted because they age and get weak.

CyanoticWasp's avatar

Are you sure that it’s the wipers themselves and not something on the glass? An oil film will cause the same type of symptoms you describe, and it can be a localized thing.

gemiwing's avatar

When I read the title of the question (defying your every action) I just have this mental picture of you trying to eat a sandwich and just as you’re about to take that first bite- the wipers come in from out of frame and knock it out of your hands. Later, trying to brush your teeth the wipers bang down the bathroom door and threaten you to relinquish your brush.

I agree with checking the spring. On my old Mazda, the only wipers that did a decent job were the expensive three-bladed ones.

phil196662's avatar

Yes, exactly! Goo on the window, use some Rain X…

jeffgoldblumsprivatefacilities's avatar

@phil196662 Ahh, I was hoping I wouldn’t have to resort to replacing the whole arm. I’ll have to try new blades once more, and see if some real lubrication on the springs makes a difference.

@CyanoticWasp I don’t think so, I’ve cleaned the window pretty extensively with each change of the blades.

@gemiwing Ha! They always ruin my lunch. :(

@all Thanks for the advice, I’ll give these things a try and see what happens.

SeventhSense's avatar

I tell you what. I am not beyond punishing a defiant wiper. You put up with that and you’re setting a bad example for the dipstick and any other rogue element under the hood. That horn starts feeling its oats at an inappropriate time… well that’s just embarrassing.

phil196662's avatar

@jeffgoldblumsprivatefacilities ; Get new wipers, put some Rain X in the spritzer and give the windshield a wash. Remember to spritz _every time you turn them on even if it’s raining to apply the Rain X- lubricates the wiper rubber. And then see what happens!

njnyjobs's avatar

Treat your windshield all around with Rain-X treatment, not just the windshield washer additive. On all my vehicles, I make it a point to treat all exterior glass surfaces atleast once a month, often if I run them through the car wash more than usual. A good glass treatment will bead off water as it hits the glass that I literally don’t have to use the windshield wipers. . . . I save on blade replacemnts and the motor don’t wear out.

Plus, it makes for real safe driving when you can see clearly all around you.

SeventhSense's avatar

Stay away from RainX. It puts a film on your windows which never comes off.

njnyjobs's avatar

@SeventhSense that is the whole point. the Rain-X film is what makes you windshield, sideview mirrors and windows stay clean longer. Rain-X or some equivalent (Armour All has a similar product) is used on race cars, on motorcycle helmets and goggles for safety reasons.

If appplied correctly (which is not that hard to do), you will be amazed how great this works… then you would probably kick yourself in the back for not using this much sooner.

SeventhSense's avatar

I have used it. It wicks water away quite well but it actually makes your wipers squeak and increases friction between them and the glass since there’s not enough water for them to displace. I don’t like any film on glass. It gets into microscopic pores and affects the surface.

fireflys's avatar

I feel your pain! I had this problem as well. Try this, show up at the dealership in tears, not the service area, the sales area where there are people buying new cars. Then start sobbing really loud. Drop to your knees. Slowly fall back on the floor and then just spread out full eagle. Still sobbing, Now, throw in a moan. Start yelling things like “I can’t stand it anymore, please, someone help fix my wiper blade springs.” Start to shake. They will come out and fix them right away. And they’ll do a great job because they will never want you to return…ever.

I didn’t try this but wish I had. Might be good to not wear good clothes.

SeventhSense's avatar

@fireflys
I agree. Nudity would only be an asset in this argument and effectively say “Hey, pay attention to me. I am not going to stand for this anymore.
In fact I’ll writhe around on the floor till I can speak to a manager

rovdog's avatar

I have this same problem. You’re not alone. Thanks!!!

Judi's avatar

Rain-X also works for shower doors.

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