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Here’s How to Replace Windshield Wipers and Fluid

Changing out your windshield wipers and fluid is an easy DIY money saver, but there are important things to remember before you go buy those new wipers. Making sure you have the right type and the right size will ensure you’re not overspending or damaging your vehicle.
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hxyume via gettyimages.com

Replacing your windshield wipers and fluid is one of the easiest things you can do to keep your car in working order. However, knowing which kind of wiper to buy can be daunting. Also, knowing where to pour the fluid can seem tricky.

Luckily, if you keep a few things in mind while doing these replacements, you will never have to pay a mechanic to replace either again! Read these simple steps to replacing both–and you’ll be on your way.

Know Which Part of the Wiper to Change

There are three main parts to a car windshield wiper.

  • The arm connects the wiper to the car.
  • The metal or plastic mount attaches to the arm.
  • The rubber wiper is the part that wipes the water off your windshield.

The rubber part is where most common issues arise, as they can get worn out, dried out, or torn. The good news is these can slide out of their mount and be easily matched to replacement blades in an auto part store. 

If you need to replace the rubber blade and the mount, you’ll need to match the style of the mount as well as the size. One important thing to consider here is whether your previous blades were ever working that well. Wipers usually get worse over time, but some cheap ones never really do the trick. If this is the case, it might be time to shell out a little more for the advanced wipers.

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ollo via gettyimages.com

Know How to Properly Detach and Reattach Wipers on Your Vehicle

Once you know what size and type of wipers you need, the last step is taking off the old wipers and snapping on the replacements. To do this:

  • Pull the wiper up and away from the windshield until it is fully extended.
  • Once it is locked in that position, flip the wiper upside down so the rubber part is facing upwards.
  • Press the tab or button where the wiper touches the arm, pull horizontally towards the outside of the car, and the wiper should slide right off.
  • When the wiper is off, you’ll notice the end of the arm has a metal part that curls back towards the rest of the arm.
  • Slide the new wiper onto this part by orienting the wiper the same way that the old one was fitted onto it.
  • Then, slide the wiper onto the curled metal part. It should click in without much pressure.
  • Once this is done, flip the wiper back over and slowly lower the wiper onto the car window. Make sure the whole rubber part fully touches the window and the arm isn’t sitting at a funny angle.

Now, you’re ready for whatever mother nature throws at your windshield!

Replacing Windshield Wiper Fluid

The wiper fluid reservoir is inside the hood of your car, and the tube you’ll need to fill will be right at the top of your engine. It will look like it’s part of the engine, but the tube actually leads behind the engine where the wiper fluid tank sits.

To find where to pour the wiper fluid, look for a cap that has a symbol that looks like a curved windshield with a single stream fountain in front of it. Do not mistake this for the radiator fluid cap, which will say something like “Coolant” and will be harder to remove.

Once you identify the cap, simply pop it open and slowly pour the fluid in. When you’re finished pouring, be sure to replace the cap.

So there you go! Windshield wipers and fluid replacement are quick and easy fixes anyone can do themselves. On top of that, remember that experts at your local auto parts store are always happy to assist and will often help you with every step right in the parking lot!

CPC-logoThis story was made possible by our Community Partners Program. Thank you Cam Clark Ford Canmore for helping to expand local news coverage in Alberta. Learn more.