Friday, January 29, 2010

How Windshield Wipers Work

A windshield wiper is a component on a vehicle that is designed to remove rain, debris, and moisture from the windshield. Wipers are created with corrugated ridges to maximize the wiping action. When a windshield needs to be cleaned the windshield wipers along with washer solvent can be effective in removing dirt and road grime. Windshield wipers are standard equipment on almost all vehicles.

Windshield wipers are designed to operate in different modes, 2 to 4 wiper speeds, and intermittent operation that allow adjusted intervals. Some vehicles are equipped a rear wiper, typically a single wiper that is designed to clean the center of the window. Windshield wipers are operated from an electric motor using a series of connecting arms or linkage.

If the wipers system is not operational check the wiper fuse first. Always replace the fuse with the manufacturer recommended replacement. If the wiper motor is operating but the wiper arms are not moving the linkage connected to the wiper motor has become disconnected. Disassemble to inspect linkage, repair as needed then reassemble and recheck system. Check the windshield wipers at least every six months and replace as necessary.

Do not allow the wipers to become cracked or separated because the metal frame that holds the wipers can damage the windshield. Inspect the windshield washer reservoir fluid level and refill as needed. This fluid or solvent is used to lubricate and clean the windshield while the wipers are in use. Avoid using your windshield wipers to remove ice from your windshield in the winter; this can cause damage to the wipers. To remove ice from the windshield an ice scraper should be used. Anytime wiper blades are not performing properly they should be replaced, visibility as well as safety relies on having wipers that are in good working order. Replacing wiper blades is a quick and easy process; most can be changed by releasing a clip.


  1. always use it when driving.. never knew much about it.. thanks for sharing =)


  2. Wanted to change the new wipers for so long. Coz one of them couldn't function well. :S

  3. @kenwooi: hope my info helps. =)

    @ Stephanie: Owh, serious. Change to silicone for better swipe and longer durability.

  4. Only passenger side wiper will work and it stops upon hitting the driver side wiper. Only the passenger side is attached to the motor. Comments on my 2000 BMW 540I would be appreciated.