Windscreen wipers tend to need replacing once every couple of years or so. As a result, learning to make the changes yourself can be a real money saver. Dirty, greasy smears left by older blades can actually impair visibility; not replacing them can potentially endanger yourself and other road users.
Here is our DIY guide to switching over your wiper blades:
What you’ll need
- Replacement blades. Make sure you get the right model: not all wipers are the same!
- Plastic adapter attachment.
- Small flat head screwdriver.
The wiper blades should usually include the support structure and small plastic attachments for actually hooking it up to the arm. Make sure you’ve got these before you take the old blades off.
- Park your car on a level surface away from traffic (your driveway should do nicely).
- Take hold of the wiper arm and pull it up away from the windscreen itself (not too hard) so that the arm is sticking out perpendicular to the window in a ‘T’ shape.
- 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.
- Once this tab has been released, pull the old blade downwards away from the arm, sliding the metal bars over the top of the arm.
- 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.
- Ensure that you’ve got the blades the right way round; they need to face the same direction as the old ones. (Check and double check this!).
- 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.
- Lower the arms back into place. Do this gently; otherwise you might end up with a crack in your windscreen.
- Test the wipers on their slowest setting. If there’s no slipping and everything’s working right, you’re good to go. If there are any problems, simply start the whole process again.
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