About the Windshield Wipers
The windshield wiper system works to keep the windshield clear in rain, snow and dust storms, helping ensure you have enough visibility to drive.
Although the wiper blades are the most prominent component, the system contains more parts. When you activate the wiper switch near the steering wheel, power passes through the windshield wiper motor, which then causes the blades to move from side-to-side at a specified pace. To do this, rotary shaft movement from the motor is converted into linear movement.
As the blades move, the rubber edge pushes moisture and debris off the glass. The system also contains wiper fluid that is released when you push or pull the handle near the switch. This motion aims a pressurized stream of fluid onto the glass, where the blades spread it across the surface. As the edge wears down, the blades cannot remove all the buildup, leaving streaks and smudges, failing to fully clear your field of vision. Over time, the edges may tear, ultimately rendering your blades useless.
Issues with Your Windshield Wiper System
Common signs that indicate an issue with your windshield wiper blades include:
- Windshield streaking
- A clattering noise as they move
- One or both blades don’t move when turned on
- The blades don’t touch the window as they move
These aspects can be attributed to:
- Dirty blades or edges
- Worn out or torn edges
- Long-term sun exposure or cold that cracks the rubber
- Excess dirt building up and abrading the rubber
- Edges and blades frozen to the windshield
Along with the blades and edges, the motor may experience issues too:
- Uneven wiper movement
- Wipers don’t stay put against the windshield or remain in the “down” position
- A grinding noise during operation
- Wipers don’t move when you hit the switch
- You can manually move the wipers back and forth when you turn the car off
Windshield wiper motor issues tend to be electrical in nature. The system may no longer work if a fuse blows, wires break or wear out, or the components short circuit. Additionally, the motor can wear out over time, with friction and corrosion accelerating the process.
Windshield Wiper System Repairs
With broken or poorly operating wipers, getting caught in heavy rain or snow is an accident waiting to happen. Precipitation can blur or stick to the car’s windshield, seriously compromising visibility.
Due to this risk, it’s recommended drivers address a damaged windshield wiper as soon as possible, especially if the full system does not seem to be working. Common repairs include the following.
Installing New Blades
If the arms move but the edges are torn, a technician may install a new set, so they wear away at the same pace. You may be presented with options, all of which align with your windshield’s specific curve.
After the old wipers are removed and the new set installed, the system will be tested to ensure proper operation. The technician working on your car will also top off the wiper fluid and check the lines for clogs.
Replacing the Motor
If the blades won’t move at all, the electrical system going to the windshield wiper motor will be examined. Whether due to wear or electrical issues, a technician will determine if a new motor is needed and install the part.
Have you been experiencing issues with your car’s windshield wipers? Bring it to DaSilva’s Auto Body for efficient diagnostic testing and replacement. To make an appointment, contact us today.