How To Change Windshield Wipers

Installing new windshield wipers using the replacement guide on the web

The windshield gets soiled from time to time or even condensed air forms a cover on it and thus impairs your vision.

It would not be safe to drive under this condition and that is why windshield wipers are included on the front part to clean them.

The two wipers are designed to move in a smooth and semi-circular motion and clean a section of the windshield; just enough for the driver and the front passenger to see ahead.

However, just like any part of the vehicle, the wiper is bound to get damaged and will need to be repaired.

This can be achieved by replacing windshield wipers through the following steps:

  1. Measuring Your Blades
  2. Taking Off The Blades
  3. Putting The New Wipers
  4. Test Them If They Work Properly

The windshield wipers can get damaged due to getting hit with an object which makes them unable to get their job done effectively.

Natural elements of the environment such as excessive exposure to the sun, rain, snow, ice can cause complications on the parts of the wiper.

When your set of windshield wipers gets affected with either of these, it is advisable that you have them replaced so that you are guaranteed of safety when driving your vehicle.

When Should You Replace Windshield Wipers?

Windshield wipers just like any other spare part of a vehicle will not last forever as they are bound to get damaged any time. They may simply get worn out or even get damaged when poorly handled.

You can notice some signs that will show that your set of windshield wipers are not working well and need to be replaced.

These signs include:

  1. Streaking of water on the windshield.
  2. Squeaking sounds when the windshield wipers move on the surface of the windshield.
  3. A milky film is formed behind the wipers when they are in operation.
  4. They do not get the car windshield cleaned effectively.

It is recommended that you best buy and replace your set of windshield wipers during the spring season.

This is because during the winter they are easily damaged because snow damages them quite easily by making them more susceptible to wear and tear.

It causes the rubber on the wipers to break up and doesn’t get the windshield well cleaned.

Things You’ll Need

When you decide that you want to remove and replace your old set of windshield wipers, you will only need the new set of wipers and some simple tools like the screwdriver and pliers.

What Type Of Windshield Wipers Do You Need?

There are numerous types and sizes of windshield wipers in the market for you to choose from.

However, you should know that each and every car has a windshield wiper size that would best fit it. It would be improper to purchase a windshield wiper and it does not fit for your car.

You should also prioritize on a type of windshield wiper that would be the best option in terms of performance.

This is because with modern technology, the type of windshield wipers in the market have also improved and thus it is recommended that you go for an advanced type so that you get your windshield cleaned effectively with every swipe.

The different types of windshield wiper blades are:

1. Conventional Windshield Wipers

These are the traditional types of windshield wipers that were fitted in many cars a decade ago.

They are designed with a metal or metal plastic composite structure and have spring flexors that ensure they are able to clean the windshield effectively.

2. Flat Windscreen Wipers

These are the modern types of wipers and are common in many new cars today. They have metal flexors that give support to the rubber element.

It is not as large as the conventional windscreen wiper, but still gets the job done. its size also ensure that the driver has a good view of the driving path ahead.

3. Hybrid Windscreen Wipers

This is a combination of the two. They are designed with aerodynamic knowledge hence will offer a good performance.

It has a spoiler that is effective on the whole blade which ensures the blade runs smoothly on the screen.

Windshield Wipers Replacement Guide

As you will notice from the instructions below, replacing your windshield wipers is not a difficult task that will take too much of your time or effort.

You will just need to follow these instructions and you will get the task done within the least time possible.

You will also realize that if you have the time, you can just buy a set of new windshield wipers and replace them on your own without the need of a technician or expert.

These instructions are basic and will work for the ordinary types of vehicles.

However, some manufacturers fit their windshield wipers and other car parts in a more complex manner and only a technician will be able to get it replaced easily.

#1 Removing Windshield Wipers

This is usually the first step and will need you to first examine the way the windshield wipers are fixed.

This is because, you will need to make sure that when you are done, it will be fixed in a proper way to enable it work without any complications.

Step1. Measuring Your Blades

  • Measuring the windshield wipers is important because windshield wipers are specific to the car.
    A specific size of windshield wiper will best suit a specific car and will not suit another. Placing a rather too long windshield wiper will have serious consequences as you may damage other parts and you may also have to buy a new set too.
  • You can check on the owner’s manual on which size of windshield wiper will suit your car or simply measure the ones you have with a tape measure. The length will then guide you to purchase a new set that would fit perfectly well.

Step2. Taking Off The Old Blades

  • Get hold of the arm, that is the lower side of the windshield wiper that does not touch the windshield and lift it towards you, away from the windshield.
  • There is a small tab beneath the wiper at the connection between the wiper and the arm, pressing it will release the blade of the wiper.
    You can then pull down the wiper blade and take it off from the windshield wiper arm. As easy as that and the old windshield wiper has been removed.

#2 Installing Windshield Wipers

You should have your new set of windshield wipers ready for installing after taking off the old one.

This should be easy since when removing the old one, you had noticed the way it was fitted and that is the same way it should be fitted when installing the new ones.

The new windshield wipers should be of the same or if another size, should be one that will not force you to deal with complications later on.

A good and advanced quality of windshield wipers is recommended as it will be of improved performance.

Step3. Putting The New Wipers

  • You need to compare a few things between the old and the new wipers, such as the attachment method. Are the hooks meant for attachment on the arm the same? This is because they might be different brands and are designed to be attached in a different way altogether.
  • If they are the same hooks, then you can attach them and ensure you hear a clicking sound that will show that they have been firmly positioned.
    You can then position the arm and let the wipers rest on the windshield as you had found it earlier. This process should be repeated for the other side of the windshield wiper.

Step4. Test Them If They Work Properly

  • You should test if you have replaced your car windshield wipers successfully. You should not wait to try them out in a real situation as they might fail and you will get stranded.
  • Get into the car and turn the wipers on and examine their functioning. At times they might need some corrections if you notice that the motion on the windshield is not as smooth as it should be. If you notice that they are loose, you will have to get them tightened.

How To Replace A Windshield Wiper Blade Rubber

This process is just as similar to how you can replace your windshield wipers. You just have to ensure that you follow the instructions to the latter.

The rubbers will need replacement when they get worn out or are damaged in that they are not effective in cleaning the car windshield as you might need them to.

The process is as discussed below:

  1. The first thing is to take the wiper blade off from the windshield arm using the procedure indicated earlier.
  2. On one end of the rubber, you can start to unclip the rubber and then on an on the rest of the attached parts too. You should have it completely removed from the wiper blade.
  3. The next step is to place your new set of wiper rubbers by sliding it into one end and doing the same for the other attachment points.
  4. You should then cut off the overlapping lengths of the wiper rubbers. Ensure you leave just the right size that would be effective for cleaning the car’s windshield. You should also consider the lengths of your old windshield rubbers.
  5. Place the windshield blade back to your car by attaching it as it was to the windshield arm and testing if it is effective.

Replacing the rubbers on the wiper blades would be less costly than buying a new set of wipers.

This option would help you save money! It also helps you if you just have an issue with one side of the windshield wipers and therefore you do not need to buy a whole pair.

Hope this video will help you more:

How To Replace Windshield Wiper Arm

At severe cases, it is the windshield arm that has been damaged and hence the windshield is unable to work effectively even if you place a new set of wipers.

The hinge that holds the wiper arm in position might get corroded and hence unable to move smoothly and allow the wiper work well. Application of oil could help but soon it will need to be replaced.

You will need a socket or a ratchet to get this done in a simple and easy way.

At the end of the wiper arm, you will have to lift a cover and if you see a bolt like item, you can get it removed using your socket and pliers.

When this has been taken off, the arm is free and you can remove it by just pulling it gently and it will come out successfully.

You can then fix your new set of windshield wiper arms the same way the previous ones were fixed.

The new ones should be of an ideal and suitable size to avoid issues when you are using them for cleaning your car windshield.

For more detail, watch this video:

Frequently Asked Questions

Now you know how to change windshield wipers with the guide I provided above.

What you will find out below are the questions that are related to the main topic. I highly recommend you keep reading!

Q1: How Do I Buy Windshield Wipers For My Car?

First, you should know that windshield wipers are specific to a car and this should not just be bought anyhow.

Just like the case of the car battery, windshield wipers are specified in details and you will need to look for the correct size for it to be effective in getting the windshield cleaned.

One way of purchasing a fitting set of windshield wipers is looking at the owner’s manual of the vehicle.

Here, you will get the exact size of the windshield wiper that would fit and clean your car windshield effectively.

Another way is by visiting an auto parts shop and let a specialist check on which size would fit your car.

The specialist will be able to give you the best fitting size and also recommend a good quality of windshield wipers that would suit you.

Some of the best windshield wipers include normal rubber wiper blades or frame-less beam blades.

Another way is by just doing it by yourself, this is when you just take a tape measure and take the measurements of the windshield wipers by yourself.

This would work if your set of wiper blades have not been worn out to an extreme level.

Q2: Are All Windshield Wipers The Same?

No, they are not the same for all vehicles. Windshield wipers are unique in each and every car as some are longer than others.

Your car windshield wipers are selected by the manufacturer so that they are able to get the work of cleaning the windshield effectively.

However, you might want to replace your set of windshield wipers for another that is longer to increase the area it covers with one wave.

This is not recommended as the windshield wipers may hang and this might lead to its wearing out and you will have to buy a new one soon.

You might also notice that this type of windshield wiper is not as effective as the original, as there are spots on the windscreen that will not get cleared.

Replacement with a shorter size of windshield wipers will also lead to some spots not getting cleaned and thus impairing the view of those in the car, including the driver.

It is therefore advisable that you follow the manufacturer’s instructions when it comes to the size of the windshield wipers you should go for.

Q3: How Much Does It Cost To Replace Windshield Wiper Blades?

Replacing one windshield wiper blade would not be more than $16, and this includes the labor charges on the same.

You will also realize that the price charged will depend on a number of factors such as the quality or type of the windshield wiper blade or its size and length.

Some auto parts shops will not charge you for the labor of installing a new set of windshield wiper blades, provided you bought it from them or a member there.

Q4: Does AutoZone Install Wiper Blades For Free?

Yes, you can have your windshield wipers install for free, you just have to buy them from AutoZone.

This would be really helpful if you can’t get time to install the set of windshield wipers by yourself.

You may also be incapable of installing the windshield wipers because your car is a different make and so are the wipers, hence the complication when it comes to replacing the windshield wipers.

AutoZone will not charge you for this service as well as other services such as testing your car battery, tire repair and rotation and some simple diagnostic tests.

This is provided that you frequent their outlets or a registered member with AutoZone.


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Written by Kane Dan

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