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8.1 Windshield Wiper Blades

Common problems with the windshield wipers include streaking or sheeting, water drops after wiping, and blade chatter. Streaking, illustrated in Fig. 8-1, is usually caused when wiper blades are coated with road film or car wash wax. The blades can be cleaned with alcohol or an alcohol-based cleaning solution, using a lint-free cloth or hard-bristle brush. If cleaning the blades does not cure the problem then they should be replaced.

Drops which remain behind after wiping, as shown in Fig. 8-2, are caused by oil, road film, or diesel exhaust coating the windshield. Again, use an alcohol or ammonia solution, or a non-abrasive cleanser to clean the windshield.

Wiper blade chatter, illustrated in Fig. 8-3, may be caused by dirty or worn blades, by a dirty windshield, or by bent or twisted wiper arms. Clean the blades and windshield as described above. Adjust the wiper arm so that there is even pressure along the blade, and so that the blade is perpendicular to the windshield at rest. If the problem persists, the blades are excessively aged or worn and should be replaced.

Fig. 8-1. Streaking caused by dirty, worn, or damaged wiper blades.

Fig. 8-2. Water beading after wiping caused by oil and dirt contaminating windshield.

Fig. 8-3. Blade chatter caused by dirty or worn blade, or by twisted or bent wiper arm.

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