Spring weather in Maryland usually means rain, rain, and more rain. While driving in the rain may get old, keeping your windshield wipers in top shape can make damp conditions more bearable. Use the following tips to help see the road clearly when April showers won’t let up, and to make sure your wipers are working properly after the harsh winter months.
Tip 1: Cleaning Your Wipers
While it may seem odd to clean your wipers (aren’t they supposed to be the ones cleaning?), it will keep them functioning properly for longer and prevent a grimy windshield in the future. As your wipers get used, they shed a fine rubber powder that builds up on the wiper’s cleaning surface causing the once sharp wiping edge to get bigger. As the powder continues to accumulate, your wipers will start to smear debris across the windshield, instead of wiping it clean.
Luckily, it’s very easy to clean your wipers. Simply take a wet cloth, preferably soaked in window cleaning solution, and run it gently along the cleaning edge of your windshield wipers. Be gentle while moving the cloth along the rubber blade to avoid tears. You’ll notice a lot of black grime on your cloth, which means it’s working!
Tip 2: Selecting New Wipers
If you do need to have your wiper blades replaced, it’s important to choose correctly. First, measure your old blades. The lengths usually differ so be sure to measure both, and don’t neglect your back window if you have one! Use the measurements to be sure you select the right blades for your vehicle’s make and model.
Prices for wiper blades can be anywhere from less than $10 to over $20 online and in-store. It is likely that the right blades cost somewhere in the middle of this range. While expensive blades may be effective, you most likely don’t need all of the features they provide, and you don’t want to purchase blades that will break after the first spring rain storm either.
When in the market for new blades, you may consider investing in beam blades, or blades with a Teflon coating. Either of these options make for more weather-resistant, durable blades in cold climates, and prevent them from sticking to the windshield. Ultimately, silicon blades tend to last the longest. Additionally, keep in mind that even if one blade needs to be replaced at the moment, the second one is most likely close to its time. Replacing both blades will save you some hassle down the road.
Tip 3: Replacing Your Own Wipers
If your wipers are worn out from the winter months, and it’s time for a replacement, follow these simple steps to get the job done on your own.
It is likely that your vehicle has what’s called hook-type wiper blades like most other cars on the road. Most blades that are sold online or in auto stores adapt to connect correctly to a majority of wipers, so don’t worry if your blades have a different connection style, such as pin-type.
After you’ve removed your new blades from the packaging and have them ready to attach, detach your old blades from the wipers by lifting the wiper, turning the blade perpendicular to the arm, and locating the release tab. Then, press the tab and pull the blade down. Although your instinct might be to pull up on the blade, this will not work to remove it from the wiper. Finally, turn the blade parallel to the wiper arm and pull it off.
To attach your new blades, repeat the removal process in reverse. Hold the new blade parallel to the wiper arm, and direct it into the slot. Then, turn it perpendicular and pull it slightly up to lock it into place. If you hear a click or feel the blade snap in, it is properly installed. If you’d like, you can test your blades by squirting some wiper fluid and using your new blades to wipe it away!
Your wipers will be getting a run for their money amidst the spring rainy season! Use these tips as a resource to keep them maintained and fix any issues that may arise, and reach out to us at Revolution Motor Works for any of your import vehicle repair and maintenance needs!