Fixing Your Windshield Wipers

by Doris Donnerman
(last updated August 18, 2017)


If you turn on your wipers and they don't work properly, there are a couple of things you can check. The first rule, however, is to be safe: If you turn on your wipers and they are not cleaning your windshield so you can see out properly, signal and pull over to the side of the road. It is easier to solve the problem if you aren't trying to dodge traffic or worrying about other vehicles you can't see very well.

If you tried to turn on your windshield wipers and neither one of them came on, then it is possible you've blown a fuse. Take a look in your vehicle's fuse box and see if you can locate the fuse that controls the wipers. Replace it with a fuse of the same rating and see if your wipers start working again.

If your wipers still don't work (neither one of them moves), then it is possible that some control circuit or the wiper motor itself needs replacing. Check with your local auto repair shop to see if they can test and repair the wipers.

If you try to turn on the wipers and only one of them moves, there is a good chance that the cause is a loose wiper arm nut. On most cars, wiper arms are secured to the motor rod through the use of a securing nut. If you look at the base of the wiper arm, you may see a plastic cap that can be removed. Slip a small flat-blade screwdriver under the edge of the cap and pry it so that it pops open. Under the cap you should see a nut that fastens the wiper arm. Tighten this nut using an adjustable wrench, and try your wipers again. If they work properly, then you can replace the cap over that covers the nut. If they don't work properly, then you'll need to visit your auto repair shop.

The most frequent failure of windshield wipers is that they don't move smoothly across your windshield and remove all the rain or snow there. If this is the case, then you will probably need to replace the wiper blades. These are inexpensive and can be purchased at any auto parts store. Check the guides inside the store, and they will let you know the proper blades to get for your car's make, model, and year.

Replacing wiper blades is generally straightforward and can be figured out by looking at the blades that are already on your wipers. Check the instructions that came with the replacement blades as well, as there may be some special directions for the new blades. Normally it only requires a small screwdriver and loosening or fastening two small clips.

Author Bio

Doris Donnerman

Doris is a jack of all trades, writing on a variety of topics. Her articles have helped enlighten and entertain thousands over the years. ...


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What is five more than 7?

2018-10-03 08:26:14


I have an 05’ Mazda 3 and after I had a company replace the windhield and a wiper bracket they had broke the windshield wipers now operate in a CW motion forcing the wiper downward as opposed to the CCW they did beforehand. What could cause this because the field technicians are stumped.

2016-03-27 11:05:41


I have a 1991 Mitsubishi lancer and my wipers don't come on after i spray my windshield washer. Any help would be greatly appreciated. Thanks

2015-07-13 08:15:34


My windshield wipers don't work when put on any setting, but when I press for my windshield washer fluid to come out, they work! But after they work they stick straight up on the windshield and wont go down???? Does my motor still work if the blades still move when I press my fluid? What's the problem and how do I fix it?

2015-06-12 19:10:38


I have a 97 F150 I just put on a brand new combo arm that controls everything else and the wipers still don't work the motor works because it was hooked up to a toggle switch and the fuse is good as well any suggestions on what the problem could be???

2015-04-23 14:35:36


My windshield wipers dont work and I already put a new winshield wiper motor , it only turnd on whrn I would put it on high but if I moved the handle where I turn them on from it would stop n now dey dont work again but the motor is good?

2013-01-09 07:49:37


when i turn on the windshield wipe,they won't come on. i hear a tick nosie by the fuse box under the hood of the 99 f-350