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How to change windscreen wiper blades

  Monday, 17 July 2023

Man driving car in heavy rainfall

Windscreen wipers tend to need replacing once every six months to a year. As a result, learning to make the changes yourself can be a real money saver. Dirty, greasy smears left by older blades can impair visibility; so learning how to replace them is an essential step to keeping yourself and other motorists safe. Generally, it will only take you around 15 minutes to replace your windscreen wiper blades so it’s an easy job to do yourself. This guide will teach you how to replace wiper blades, plus go over when you should replace them and what you’ll need.

When should you replace your wiper blades?

Effective windscreen wiper blades should clear all the rain from their path, so if they start streaking, splitting, or squeaking it’s a strong indicator that you should replace them. Other signs your windshield wipers need changing include broken frames, cracks in the rubber, and corrosion of the metal components.

What tools will you need to fit new windscreen wipers?

  • Replacement windscreen wiper blades. Make sure you get the right model: not all wipers are the same!
  • Plastic adapter attachment.
  • Small flat-head screwdriver.

The new windscreen wiper blades should usually include the support structure and small plastic attachments needed to replace them, so make sure you have these before removing the old wiper blades.

How to replace windscreen wiper blades?

  1. Park your car on a level surface and away from traffic.
  2. Take hold of the windscreen wiper arm and gently pull it upwards and away from the windscreen itself. The arm should be sticking out perpendicular to the windscreen in a ‘T’ shape.
  3. On the windscreen wiper arm, there should be a securing tab pressed near the centre attachment, which will need to be loosened.  If it’s a bit tough initially, use a small screwdriver to loosen it.
  4. Once this tab has been released, pull the old wiper blade downwards away from the arm, sliding the metal bars over the top of the arm.
  5. Remove the old attachment from the blade and fit the new one (again, it should click into place).  On some occasions, the fastening mechanisms of the blades may require you to fit the attachments first.
  6. Ensure that you’ve got the new windscreen wiper blades the right way round. They need to face the same direction as the old blades.
  7. Install the new blade onto the wiper arm.  This is done by pulling the attachment into the hook at the end of the arm until it clicks.
  8. Lower the windscreen wiper arms back into place.  Do this gently; otherwise, you might end up with a crack in your windscreen.
  9. Test the wipers on their slowest setting to ensure everything is working correctly and there’s no slipping. If there are any problems, you may need to remove the new blades to adjust them.

Generally, it will only take you around 15 minutes to replace your windscreen wiper blades

Be sure to read ASM car maintenance guides to help you with everything from cleaning your car to changing your tyres.

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