When should I change my wipers?
Wiper Blades may seem like a pretty mundane topic, but think about how important your vision is: We protect our eyes. If we need contacts or glasses, we take care of them too. And, well, wiper blades are critical to our vision when we drive around the area. In fact, 90 percent of our driving decisions are based on what we see.
How do I know if my wiper system needs attention?
A wiper motor that is running right is fast and forceful. A washer fluid pump that works lets you spray your windshield with cleaner whenever you want. And new wiper blades are smooth and silent.
If you encounter any of the following issues, it may be time to bring your car in for wiper service:
- Streaks across your windshield
- Skipping as the arms travel back and forth
- Squeaks either from the blades or the wiper motor
- Washer fluid that leaks or doesn’t spray when it should
How do wipers work?
Imagine getting called in to work only when the weather is bad, and being expected to perform flawlessly every single time…no excuses. And when you make too much noise about it or can’t keep up anymore, somebody just throws you away without so much as a “thank you.”
Windshield wipers are one of those car parts we really take for granted until they don’t work right. It has been estimated that the average wipers are made to make 1.5 million trips across the glass in their lifetime!
While they seem to be fairly straightforward, it’s amazing how much is going on just beneath the hood of your car to make it seem so effortless. The setup is simple – a motor, some gears, a couple of arms, and some strips of rubber on the ends – but the coordination between all those parts and the force required to move them back and forth so quickly is impressive.
When you turn the knob to activate your wipers, the motor turns on and activates a worm gear. Picture a circular gear with teeth all the way around. Sitting on top of that piece is what looks like a screw with threads all along it. The threads fit into the grooves of the teeth, so when the screw part turns the round gear turns. Screw part turns one way: wipers go left. Screw part turns the other way: wipers go right. The advantage of the “worm gear” is that it allows tremendous force to be used by a very small motor on gears that need to change direction very quickly without losing power.
The rest of the wiper team is made up of:
- Blades made of strips of rubber that do the actual cleaning.
- Arms with springs to hold the blades tight against your windshield.
- A tank, pump, and tubes that supply special fluid to the windshield for those times you drive through a wall of bugs or encounter actual angry birds.
Why should I have my wipers checked?
Until driverless cars take over the world, being able to see what is outside as you hurl thousands of pounds of metal down the road is pretty important. Especially when the weather hits you with everything it’s got. Reduced visibility can lead to anything from simply missing your turn to causing a major collision.
What do we do in a typical wiper service?
Like any system in your car, lots of parts equal lots of opportunities for things to break. When you discover issues with your wipers and bring your car in to [atc], our experienced technicians will check your entire wiper system to discover the source of the problem and work to make sure everything is functioning properly to give you the cleanest and clearest view when you get back out on the road.
A typical wiper service includes:
- Complete wiper system inspection
- Replacement of wiper blades as needed. (Wiper blade technology has come a long way. There are a lot of cheap blades out there, but we think you deserve better. We’re pretty picky about things like that. So we provide only the best. They’ll last longer, work harder, and save you more money in the long run.)
- Repair or replacement of components such as wiper motors, fluid pumps, and other parts that may have failed
We kind of think you and the people you share the road with are pretty important. We want to do everything we can to make sure all of your trips are as safe as possible. Anybody can sing, “I can see clearly now, the rain is gone.” Count on us to help you see clearly no matter what.
Click here to set up an appointment. Or call one of our locations today:
atc Auto Center, Augusta
atc Auto Center, Grovetown
4 Tips To Keep Seeing Clearly
- Clean your windshield when you fill up. Use the squeegee and cleaning solution at the gas station to clean your windshield whenever you stop to fill your tank. A smoother surface will extend the life of your blades.
- Don’t use wipers to de-ice. Use a hard plastic scraper instead of soft rubber wiper blades. The rough ice will only wear them down faster.
- Give them a lift. If snow and ice are in the forecast, lift the wiper arms away from your windshield to keep them from freezing to the glass.
- Wipe the wipers. Dirt and oil build up on the edges of your wiper blades over time. When you wash your car, use a small amount of glass cleaner and a paper towel to wipe the edges of your wiper blades. They’ll last longer and work better.