When should I replace my windshield wipers?
Ernie’s Auto Service Answer:
Windshield wipers are one of those under-appreciated items on our cars; we only think about them when we need them . The problem with that is that you find out they have failed when you actually need them most – a little too late.
Wiper blades are indeed an essential safety system for each car. As you can imagine, 90% of our driving decisions are based on what we see. If you can’t see well because your wipers can’t clear your windshield, your ability to drive safely is significantly impaired.
So the simple answer, of course, is that car owners should change the wipers if they don’t work well. However, try making it a point to replace them before they go bad so your wipers are always ready when that storm hits. For some car owners, once a year may be enough. For others – those who drive a lot, whose wipers are exposed to a lot of sun, or use their wipers more – replacing the blades a couple of times a year might be in order.
There are several types of wiper blades. The conventional blade is the base model. On the other end of the spectrum are beam blades. These have a solid beam that provides uniform pressure over the entire wiper surface for better contact with the windshield. And there are hybrid blades that are a combination of conventional and beam blades. Upgraded wiper blades last longer and provide a cleaner wipe. Motorists can always upgrade, but should never go with a lower grade blade than what was installed on your vehicle from the factory.
Finally, there are special winter blades. The unique design of winter wiper blades resists snow and ice build-up in the blade. The price of winter blades might be more than conventional, beam or hybrid blades, and are not required to drive in winter conditions, however all wiper types will work well in snow and icy conditions as long as wipers are replaced when first showing signs of wear and tear.
Remember, using your wipers on an icy windshield will tear up your wiper blades. Scrape your windshield before running your wipers. If there is ice build up on the blades themselves, carefully scrap that off also. If you find your blades have become stuck to the windshield due to frost or ice, do not force them free – that is the fastest way to peel off the rubber on the blade. It is best to start your windshield defroster and let it run a bit until the blades move freely.
Your professionals at Ernie’s Auto Service can recommend wiper blade options and help you select what’s best for this critical safety system. Give us a call today!
Ernie’s Auto Service
2804 Deborah Ave
Zion, Illinois 60099