How to Fix Windshield Wipers That Stopped Working?

Certain vehicle parts may fail us when we need them the most, such as while driving back from work in the pouring rain. If anything like that occurs and you don’t know how to fix windshield wipers that stopped working, you’ll probably be more than unhappy. However, there is no need to panic. I’ll let you in on a secret about everything, including the most important detail – how to fix them if they break.

Fixing one or both windshield wipers is easier than you may think. First, you need to know how these components work and check whether they aren’t just stuck. Once you eliminate the mechanical cause, check the gums and possibly change them or just give the wipers a good shake. However, if the problem is mechanical, check the wiper motor and pivot nuts. Then proceed with examining the fuse. Be sure to do each step because only safe driving is good driving. 

Why It’s Important to Learn How to Fix Windshield Wipers That Stopped Working

Even the most composed drivers would experience stress when driving because it can be hazardous if there is very heavy rain and poor visibility. Did you know that around 45% of weather-related auto accidents are rain related? This seems like a brief horror story. So, you should do everything in your power to maximize your safety on the road. And that starts with a car that has all equipment working properly. 

Be prepared your windshield wipers could stop working properly
Be prepared your windshield wipers could stop working properly

First Things First – How Do Windshield Wipers Work?

Windshield wipers are indeed a necessary part of every car like seat belts are too. But, even though we don’t use windshield wipers every day, they are there to keep the glass clean and increase visibility by going back and forth to remove the water, whether it is rainfall, snow, washer fluid, water, or ice. They are made to sweep around 1.5 million times.

As soon as you begin taking classes and studying all the beginner driving advice, you’ll understand just how complicated these vehicles are and that knowing how to drive is only the first step. Whether you acquired one of the most expensive automobiles in the world or one of the best off-road vehicles, maintenance is something you just need to have on your mind. That’s how car maintenance is something you just should know how to do. Because you should anticipate that there will always be something to fix or tinker around. 

You should anticipate that the malfunction will happen sooner or later because these machines are made to break… eventually… You should be able to repair a windshield wiper just like you should be able to know how to change a tail light, utilize a tire repair kit, and also change a flat tire. After all, that knowledge will save you a lot of money.

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What Are the Windshield Wipers Components?

Each wiper has the following components to carry out this ostensibly straightforward task:

  • Metal arm with a bottom-facing rubber blade.
  • Power is provided by a motor and worm gear reduction.
  • A connection that uses motor power to move objects back and forth.

There are typical settings for low, medium, and high speeds, as well as intermittent wipers, which take a small rest after each wipe. These are merely the fundamental options. Modern automobiles include additional settings that let you choose your preferred speed. A setting that is too slow will typically result in more than a few raindrops obstructing your view, and a setting that is too fast will cause the glass to dry but the blades to squeak. But when it comes to this area, a rain-sensing wiper appears to be the panacea for many.

Do All Cars Use the Same Wiper System?

When wipers malfunction and stop working, the car is deemed unsafe. Different car types employ various wiping strategies, but they often move in parallel or in opposition. Although a single-arm system is also available, a great number of models employ the conventional two-wiper arrangement. For instance, mono-blade wipers are used on some Mercedes vehicles.

Not all vehicles use the same wiper system
Not all vehicles use the same wiper system

What Are the Most Common Causes That Make a Windshield Wiper Stop Functioning?

Driving teaches us new things, and every circumstance will help you learn more about your car. How can windshield wipers that won’t move to be fixed? Avoid letting driving fear take over. There is a fix for every problem. 

Your windshield wipers may not be operating for a variety of reasons, but fortunately, I have a fix for every one of them (because I fixed more than a few of them). This is one of the things you should master along with how to disable a car alarm or even replace U-joints. Trust me, as a driver, you’ll need this knowledge. 

However, before we get to fixing, let’s go over some of the most common causes of the malfunction. 

Windshield Wipers Are Torn

The most typical reason for malfunction is a torn windshield wiper. The wiper blades can’t remove debris from the windshield when the rubber edges are torn. Naturally, this lowers visibility and makes driving dangerous. Almost always, damaged wiper blades need to be replaced right away. This, as you may imagine, is the most obvious reason.

The Motor of the Wiper Is Not Working

A malfunctioning or shorted electrical motor inside of the wiper may be the cause of a windshield wiper not operating. Your wipers won’t operate at all as a result. Examine the motor; a loose connecting wire in the circuit may exist. While you can attempt changing any worn parts, replacing your wipers may be the simplest course of action. It’s important to remember it can happen in every moment of your driving like the spark plug can stop working as well, so be completely prepared.

Need to Tighten the Wiper Pivot Nuts

The wiper transmission is connected to the wiper arms by a pivot nut. The motor will still turn the pivot when that nut is loose, which happens frequently, but the wiper arm may remain stationary, or only one wiper may operate. In case of either of these events, check the pivot points to make sure they are securely linked. It shouldn’t be necessary to replace the wipers because the problem can be fixed by simply tightening the pivot nuts.

Ensure you’re aware of some most common reasons that cause wipers to stop operating as they should. After all, when you know the cause of the problem, you might be able to fix it sooner than you think.

Can A Fuse Be Responsible For Malfunction?

So, the fuse for the windshield wipers has failed, and it’s not because they are torn or loose pivot nuts. What can be the cause, then? If your fuse blows, it was probably planned that way. The fuse will surely automatically burn out if your wiper motor is overworked to shut down and safeguard the more expensive wiper motor. 

What could cause the fuse to blow then becomes the question. Snow would be a potential suspect if it occurred during bad weather. Check the motor to determine if anything is blocking it before installing a new wiper. Try changing the fuse, and if it doesn’t help, let an expert have a look.

Because every car is unique, check your owner’s manual to find out where the fuse for the windshield wipers, washer, or stalk is located. Check the fuse by pulling it out and looking for fractures in the filament; if it’s a glass fuse, look for fog in the tube. Replace the fuse with one of the same amperages if it looks to be damaged.

What if the Fuse Is Good?

The wiper stalk, washer/wiper switch, or the cabling to or from either become the main suspects if the fuse is sound and undamaged. You might want to inspect the switch for power and ground if you’re skilled with tools and have some knowledge of direct current electrical systems. If you’re not confident performing this or are having problems with a wiper stalk, you should have your mechanic further examine the stalk and related electronics in your car.

A person holding a block of car fuses
Don’t forget to check the fuse and wiper stalk, cables, and switch

What to Do to Prevent The Windshield Wipers From Breaking

Rain, dust, trash, insects, and other items that could hinder your vision while driving can all be removed with the help of windshield wipers. Keeping the windshield spotless is essential since having a good view of the road ahead is essential when driving.

Luckily, there are some things you can do to help prevent your windshield wipers from breaking. First, make sure to always use high-quality windshield wiper fluid. Put it like this – you’ll use the best brake fluid (I use Motul DOT 5.1) as well, right? This will help to keep your windshield clean and clear and will also help to prevent your wipers from sticking.

Second, be sure to inspect your wipers regularly for any cracks or damage. If you see any damage, replace the wiper immediately. Finally, if you live in an area with a lot of snow and ice, be sure to use snow chains or covers on your wipers to prevent them from freezing.

By following these simple tips, you can help to ensure that your windshield wipers will always be in good working order. So don’t wait until they break to start thinking about them – be proactive and take care of them now!

Keep in Mind Wipers Aren’t Designed for Extreme Weather

We occasionally overestimate the capabilities of windshield wipers. In actuality, they are simply not intended to remove large pieces of frozen ice or heavy snow that have adhered to the windshield. The likelihood of harming your wipers, if you attempt to use them in this situation, is very high. Just little light snow or frost is okay, but anything heavier that rubs on the blades or tears them will give you trouble. 

Do not even attempt it if the snow gets wet and adheres to the windshield. Always clearing snow and ice from the windows (get the AstroAI snow brush and thank me later) before running your wipers is a good rule of thumb. If you live in a region where there is a lot of snowfall, you might want to get windshield wipers that are more durable and made to endure the winter weather.

Extreme weather surely can cause the windshield wipers to break
Extreme weather surely can cause the windshield wipers to break

Drive Safely Without Worrying About Non-Working Windshield Wipers

If you’re like most drivers, you don’t think much about the windshield wipers until they just stop working. Then, it’s all you can think about! A broken wiper can make it difficult to see during a rainstorm and can even be dangerous. But now that you’re completely prepared with knowledge on how to respond if the inconveniences like wipers stop working, you can drive like a real pro.