How wiper blades work

Wiper Blade Replacement Image

Even if you don’t live in a rainy climate, your car’s wiper blades should be replaced every 12 months because the rubber gradually perishes when it’s exposed to sunlight or cold temperatures and its wiping performance worsens.

In freezing conditions make sure the wipers aren’t stuck to the windshield or rear screen before you use them (check before you turn on the ignition in case your auto wipers activate) and switch off the wipers when the rain stops to avoid putting unnecessary strain on the motor and blades.

New wipers are easy to fit, relatively cheap to buy and will boost visibility in bad weather, so they’re a wise investment.

This task requires no experience and usually no tools are needed. It’ll take you a couple of minutes.

Every car is different, so before you view the full instructions, find yours...

When to change your wiper blades

“The sun causes the rubber to deteriorate over time and it won’t be long before you have streaks on the glass”

Haynes recommends you change your wiper blades every year. Even if you live in a part of the world that doesn’t get much rain, the sun causes the rubber to deteriorate over time and it won’t be long before you have streaks on the glass when you use the washers - or it actually starts to rain.

It’s important to change all wiper blades at the same time, so both at the front and the rear screen blade if you have one.

All cars are slightly different, so if it is time to change your wiper blades, use our before you begin checklist, and find your car for specific instructions.

How to change your wiper blades

This is a clip from a sample video. Find the full step-by-step task for your model.

 

A very brief summary of the task:

  1. Lift the arm from the screen and press the central lever to release the wiper blade from the arm
  2. If you’re just replacing the rubber elements, squeeze the prongs at the end of the blade and slide the rubber out
  3. Slide in the new rubber, making sure it’s held securely by the metal strips
  4. If you’re replacing the entire wiper blade assembly, simply clip it in over the wiper arm hook. Flat-bladed wipers have a slightly different attachment

Every car is different, so before you view the full instructions, find yours...

Why you should change your wiper blades

Rain, hail, sleet and snow aren’t great to drive in because they hamper your visibility, so it’s important that you can rely on your wipers to clear the screen.

You may want to save money and just replace the rubber element instead of the entire blade. This is fine as long as the old blade is able to hold the rubber against the glass properly. If not, you’ll need to change that, too.

Warning

Don’t forget to replace the rear wiper. It doesn’t take long for rear blades to start screeching and juddering and a new one should silence the racket.

Before you begin

Tools you will need

Few, if any tools are required for this job.

  • Long-nose pliers
  • Flat-bladed screwdriver

Parts you may need

  • Wiper blades (buy a branded set for maximum performance)

How much does a new wiper blade cost?

Wiper blades  £10-40
Garage fee savings  £50