Windscreen wipers rear and front for different automobiles
Your Windscreen wipers (wiper blades) worn out? » Read more about common malfunctions • Repair • Replacement manual
A little history of a windshield wiper
Edison, Tesla, Da Vinci – apparently, history's great inventors were all men. On many occasions, however, women's ingenious inventions made everyday life a lot safer, better and more comfortable. One of those ladies with a talent for technical inspiration was Mary Anderson from the USA. Already in 1903, i.e. in the car's early history, she registered her patent for the car windscreen wiper and thus laid the foundation for the entire industry. Nowadays, a wiper blade is one of the most important wear parts of a car.
Always a clear view with the windscreen wiper
A windscreen wiper's task is wiping off the dirt contained in the water from the windscreen. When properly maintained, a windscreen wiper lasts longer than a year. Incorrect use could make earlier replacement necessary. A windshield wiper consists of a wiper arm and a wiper blade. A wiper arm is a fixed car component. Connected with the wiper mechanism and the wiper motor it normally lasts a car's life span. The wiper blade on the other hand is a typical wear part and particularly susceptible, consisting of a thin metal brace and a rubber lip. The thicker part of the rubber lip's profile is tightly fixed to the brace. Towards the windscreen the lip forms a wedge. A thinner strip between the wedge and the thicker part is a kind of flexible joint enhancing the efficiency of the wiping procedure.
Wiper blade wear & tear
The tip of a wiper blade is only a fraction of a millimetre wide, making it very susceptible to clinging dirt. When the lip ruptures, water runs through it, noticed by the driver as a curved streak remaining on the windscreen. Another wear limit for wiper blades is embrittlement. Sunlight hardens the wiper rubbers. The driver will notice it by loud squeaking sound even in case of heavy rain. If the wiper has become too brittle, the wiper blade will eventually crack. Ultimately the wear part needs to be replaced.
Replacing a wiper blade
Replacing a wiper blade requires no tool. The wiper arm is simply clicked forward enabling the old wiper blade to be pulled off. The new wiper blade is inserted in the same way – and the new wiper blade is ready to function. The accessory trade offers special knives for "adaptation" of the wiper blades. Their effect is generally short-lived and only lasts a couple of days, making the purchase of these tools superfluous.
If you need new wiper blades, their apparent high price can be a source of irritation. As for all good things, the price for high quality has a valid reason. Cheap wiper blades are often made of hard rubber, not suitable for new windscreen wipers. Wiper blades of branded quality on the other hand excel by their adequate wiper function and flexible movement. The obvious quality soon causes you to forget the high price for a set of high-grade wiper blades. Nevertheless: caked dirt is best removed manually or with a high-pressure cleaner. Otherwise even the most expensive wiper blade is soon up for replacement again. Also in winter preventive measures apply: covering the car before the windscreen freezes. A windscreen wiper is useless on a frozen windscreen.