Troubleshooting Issues with Your Wiper Blades

Working wiper blades aren’t simply needed for your safety and the safety of other road users. They’re a legal requirement, and you could be fined £2,500 and receive three penalty points if yours are faulty or not performing as they should.

To keep you in the know, we’ll run through some common wiper blade problems, along with the warning signs to watch out for when it comes to your blades’ performance. 

The Signs You Need New Wiper Blades

Generally, you should easily be able to tell when your car’s wiper blades have seen better days. If your current blades are on the way out and you’ve been asking yourself “why aren’t my wiper blades working?”, then here are some of the tell-tale symptoms that it’s time for a new set.

Cracked Rubber

A quick visual inspection can clue you into your blade’s poor performance. Is the rubber nice and smooth, or has it cracked, split, or completely broken in certain places? Imperfections like these, or a rounded look to the blade, are signs that your blades are past their best. Time to replace them!

Streaky Windows

Cracked or damaged blades have a habit of leaving streaks or smears on your windscreen when driving in downpours. Worse still, they can leave a film of grime on your windscreen that can cause visibility problems, including hazardous sun dazzle. A quick clean of your blades might do the trick, but if the problem persists, you’ll definitely need new ones. 

Chattering Sounds

Your wiper blades should move in near silence. But if they sound like nails on a chalkboard as they move across the glass, then it’s because they’re only coming into contact with certain parts of your windscreen. As well as the irritating noise, you’ll also have to deal with poor visibility too. 

Distorted Frames

Using your wipers in the winter to clear a frozen windscreen can cause a range of issues, including distorted wiper arms. Similarly, being overzealous when cleaning them can have a similar effect. A bent wiper arm or blade stops your windscreen from being properly cleaned – even if the wipers are functioning well otherwise. Juddering is a common symptom of distorted wiper arms, particularly if the problem persists after you’ve replaced the wiper blades.

Poor Contact with the Windscreen

You’ll be able to tell if this is the problem if it’s lashing down. In heavy rain, your blades can’t reach certain parts of the windscreen, usually the corners or the middle, which could be caused by old rubber or a bent frame. Either way, you should purchase replacements as soon as you can.

Dealing with Wear and Tear

Of course, all wipers will wear out at some point, but you can extend their life with a little TLC every so often. Any time you clean your car, or every three months, clean your wiper blades with a good quality glass cleaner and some paper towels to get rid of the dirt and grit that could be contributing to their poor performance.

Preparing ahead of seasonal changes can help out too. Before winter starts, it’s well worth buying wipers that are specifically designed to take on the harsher climes of the colder months. Even if your current blades are in good working order, ice and snow can make light work of them, especially compared to those built to withstand the cold. 

We hope this guide answered your questions but if you’re looking for more information, our comprehensive hub of windscreen wiper blade resources is filled with valuable know-how to help you choose, fit and care for your car wiper blades. Explore more, below.

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