Introduction: Changing Windshield Wipers
This instructable will guide you through the process of changing your windshield wipers. If you are viewing this document you probably have had some trouble in the past. Using this instructable as a guide you should be able to easily change your wiper blades and add wiper fluid in no time.
Step 1: Signs of Wear and Tear
Wipers that don’t clear the windshield completely or are deteriorated should be replaced as soon as possible. This image show what deteriorated wipers look like and they fail to clear the windshield of water and debris. Getting caught in a rain storm with bad wipers can be potentially dangerous.
Step 2: Prep Step
Before going to the autoparts store or Walmart you will need to know what make and model your car is. It is also a good idea to know the of length each wiper as well. Depending on your car, wipers can both be the same size or they can each be different lengths. Be sure to take note of this. The car used here the wipers are different sizes with lengths of 28in and 17in.
Step 3: Choosing Wiper Blades
Prices will vary based on the maker of the windshield wiper blades as well as the model that your vehicle will need. What you see in this picture in terms of model type may not be what you need for your vehicle. Your autopart representative will be able to help you find the right type for you.
Step 4: Whats Your Fluid Preference?
Now we want to look at the windshield wiper fluids. They come in a variety of brands and purposes. There are fluids that are made for cold weather, fluids that are for cleaning insects off of your windshield, and fluids to help push rain away making it easier to drive during adverse weather. You can also find fluids that offer combinations of these options. These are just some of the options that are available to you when selecting your fluid of choice. The price of each of these is dependent on the brand and type of fluid you are looking for.
Step 5: Cleaning Wiper Storage Area
To get started, clean any unnecessary debris out from around the wipers or ventilation intake. This will help ensure that your new blades engage the windshield completely after installation and prevent premature wear of your new wipers.
Step 6: Lift the Arms
You will nee to lift the windshield wipers into their maintenance position in order to replace them. This is simply done by grabbing the middle of the wiper blade and pulling it away from the windshield. Continue lifting the wipers until they hold into place in the up position as shown in the picture.
Step 7: Blade Removal
The method of removal is dependent of the type of wipers that you have. In this case there was a small tab that needed to be pushed in, in order to slide the wiper off. On other wipers you might have to lift the tab instead of pushing it but the same instructions follow after pulling the tab up. Push the tab in with your thumb and force the wiper downward toward the windshield. The wiper should slide off of the metal holder as shown and become free to move. Remove the detached wiper from the metal holder shaft completely by sliding the wiper upwards avoiding the U-shaped part of the metal holder.
Step 8: Blade Installation
To install the blades you will need to the the opposite of removal. Slide the wiper around the metal holder until its past the U-shaped part on the metal holder. Next push the wiper upwards on the wiper arm, ensuring that the clip enters the U-shape, until it clicks. Wiggle it around a little to make sure it is firmly attached. You wouldn't want it to fly off when driving!
Step 9: Opening the Hood
Make sure you have returned the wipers to the operating position before you lift the hood. Search for the hood release lever. It will be located on the driver side of the car most likely under the dash. A picture is shown above of what to look for. Pull the lever until you hear a popping sound. The hood should now be open slightly.
Step 10: Open the Hood
Once you have “popped the hood” release the hood safety latch by reaching under the front of the hood and feeling for a small lever or handle. Do not worry, there is nothing within reach that could harm you. Once you have located the lever push it downward or upward, depending on the car, while simultaneously trying to lift the hood with your other hand.
Step 11: Prop the Hood
When you get the hood open completely you will need to prop it open. On some vehicles there are small gas cylinders that will automatically hold the hood up for you. On most vehicles this is not the case and the hood must be held up with the hood support rod. This rod is located just above the grill, laid across the front of the car as shown in the picture. Stand the support rod up and put the end of it into the hole on the underside of the hood.
Step 12: Adding Wiper Fluid
Look for the windshield wiper fluid cap. The cap should look similar to the one shown in the picture. When you locate the cap remove it. This will open the windshield wiper fluid reservoir which is where you will be pouring your fluid into. You can choose to use a funnel or to just pour it straight in. In this case a funnel was placed over the opening. Either way you chose to do it, just pour the fluid into the reservoir slowly until you begin to see it come to the top. Try not to have the fluid pour all over, but if this does happen it is nothing to stress about.
Step 13: Closing Up!
Replace the cap on the wiper fluid reservoir. Remove the hood support rod from the hood and place it in the same location it was found. Put the hood down, making sure the hood is firmly latched. You should hear a very distinct audible sound of the hood being snapped securely into place.
Step 14: Testing
Now that you have replaced your wipers and added more wiper fluid you will want to ensure they are working correctly. Test if they are working by running your wiper fluid from inside your car. You should have fluid spraying onto the windshield and the wipers should completely clear the fluid with each stroke. If there are streaks on the windshield recheck that your wipers are in full contact with the windshield. If there is no wiper fluid spraying onto your windshield there is a larger issue that will need to be resolved outside of this instruction manual.
Step 15: Conclusion
You have now successfully changed your windshield wipers and added wiper fluid to your car. Congratulations! Now you can speed away with your newly clean windshield and functional wipers blades. Don’t exceed the speed limit though, because that is against the law.