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22
Feb 2017
Guide to Wiper Blades

As powerful storms battle California the rain and wind can make for difficult driving. During this time we can see the need for properly working wiper blades. Here’s a quick guide to wiper blades, what to replace, when to replace, how to purchase, etc. Need your wiper blades replaced visit A Autocare.

Guide to wiper blades


Vultures dont like wiper blades

 

What are windshield wiper blades

Car windshield wipers are a device used to remove rain/snow from your vehicles windshield.

 

What are the parts to windshield wiper blades?
 

The wiper blade consists of a rubber blade (part that actually contacts your windshield) and a metal or plastic frame.

 

The frame securely holds the rubber blade and connects to the wiper arm. The frame usually has hinges or is curved to allow the rubber blade to contour your windshield. The wiper blade frame with rubber blade, is what most people replace when their wiper blades are not working properly. It is possible to replace just the rubber blade.


Image of wiper rubber blades

 

Do I replace the wiper blade or just the rubber?

Today you will usually only see wiper blades with the rubber blade attached, sold in stores. Usually the rubber blade is the only part not working anymore. Over time, the rubber will deteriorate, rip, tear, and or fall apart.


Image of variety of wiper blades

 

Personally, I try to replace only the rubber blade, since I have the time and patience to do so. Replacing just the rubber blade can cost a fraction of what a wiper blade costs.

Image of person installing new wiper rubber blades onto existing wiper blades.

But for convenience, visit your local auto parts store and purchase wiper blades with rubber blades.
  

When do I need wiper blade replacements

Wiper blade service intervals will range anywhere from six months to a year, depending upon driving conditions and the quality of the wiper blade/rubber. Past the year mark, the rubber blade may be intact and pliable, but it can leave streaks or can skip.

Image of rubber blade tear


No matter how long it's been, if you notice that your wiper blades are not properly cleaning your windshield -- leaving behind a haze or streaks -- it's time to consider new wiper blades or wiper blade rubber.


Image of bad wiper blade symptoms

 

Types of wiper arms

The three most common wiper arm styles are the side post, J hook and bayonet. These styles lock into place, making for simple removal and installation. Most cars have the J-hook style.

Image of different wiper arms
 

Where to purchase wiper blades

  • Dealer: The manufacture dealer will have wiper blades and should have the actual rubber blades (Usually for a fraction of the wiper blade).
  • Auto parts store: Autozone, Napa, O'Reilly’s, etc
  • Automotive repair shop: Come visit A Autocare.
  • Online: Auto parts store website, Amazon, other online retailers.

How do I purchase windshield wipers for my car?

Changing your wiper blades is typically a simple task. If you’re not confident about your skills, it may be a good idea to leave it to the professionals — If you want to do it yourself, follow these steps:

  • Find out the size. Find out both of your wiper blade sizes. The wiper blade length is its size. Measure them or look up the length online or in your car’s owner’s manual. Some vehicles have both wiper blades the same length but most have two different sizes. The sizes range from 16 inches to 26 inches long. On my 2003 Corolla, the driver side is 24 inches long while passenger is 18.

    Image of person measuring wiper blades
     
  • Purchase new wiper blades. You will want to replace both at the same time. The easiest way to purchase wiper blades in an auto part store or online, is to give the store person/website your specific year/make/model. This will ensure you get the correct size and wiper arm type to fit your specific vehicle.  

    Image of amazon wiper blades
     
  • Remove the old wiper blades. Lift the wiper arm away from the windshield.  Next depress the small tab on the underside of the wiper where it meets the wiper arm. When the tab is depressed, slide the wiper blade off the arm by pulling downward. Once you get the concept of how the wiper blade is holding the wiper arm it will be a easier.

    Image of removing J-hook style wiper blade
     
  • Attach the new wiper blades. Pull the wiper blade tight onto the arm. You will hear a clicking sound when it locks into place. If you did it correctly, you should be able to pull on the wiper blade and it will not come off the wiper arm.

    Image of installing J-hook style

     
  • Done. Enjoy your new wiper blades

    Image of properly working wiper blades

    More Info
    Future blogs will discuss more relevant information about wiper blade refils, windshield