When and How to Replace Your Windscreen Wipers
Windscreen wipers are an important – but often overlooked – safety feature that make it possible to drive safely in inclement weather, and to clear your windscreen of any dirt that lands on it when driving.
But windscreen wipers are not immune from wear and tear. The wiper blades are typically made from rubber and being exposed to the elements will cause them crack or even warp, leading to them being less than effective when needed. Ideally, they should be checked and replaced whenever you take your car in for a service, though you can do this yourself too if necessary. In most environment windscreen wipers would need to be replaced every 12 months, but in areas with very dry, hot summers, or winters with heavy frost and snow, this could be shortened to every six months.
How to Tell Your Windscreen Wipers Need to be Replaced
The most notable signs that you need to replace your windscreen wipers come when using them:
- When driving in the rain or using your vehicles windscreen washer system there are visible sections that aren’t being wiped. These might be quite wide, indicating a warped wiper, or smaller streaks and strips indicating cracks and tears in the wiper blades.
- When using your windscreen wipers, they make a squeaking sound, or appear to shudder and rattle against the windscreen, even in very wet conditions.
Remember to always use your windscreen washer if you decide to test your windscreen wipers when it isn’t raining. Running your windscreen wipers over a dry surface can damage the blades, and even scratch your windscreen.
You can also look for visible signs of wear and tear by checking the wiper blades periodically, looking for obvious cracks, tears, or splits in the blade itself, and also checking the softness and flexibility of the blades. If the blades feel hard and brittle, and don’t bend easily, it might be time to replace them.
How to Replace Your Windscreen Wipers
You can find windscreen wiper replacements for most makes and models of cars at your local spare car parts store. Ask for assistance if you’re not sure what to look for since in some cases you might need to also pay attention to the year your vehicle was released, not just the make and model. Universal wiper blades are available too, though these may require the use of an adapter, and if you live in a very dry and hot area, consider getting silicone blades instead of rubber blades. Silicone blades are a little longer wearing and less susceptible to high temperatures.
The process of changing the blades is relatively simple and will be explained in full on the wiper blade packaging, and in your vehicle’s owner manual. If you follow the instructions, you should be able to swap out the worn blades for brand new blades in under 30 minutes. But if it seems a little complicated, or you’re short of DIY time, book a service online with Instant Windscreens and we can get your windscreen wipers safely replaced, and check the overall condition of your windscreen at the same time.