How to Find the Right Windshield Wiper Blades for Your Vehicle and Replace Them Yourself
July 4, 2019
By Sanel NAPA
It’s easy to underestimate exactly how important proper visibility is while driving. Proper windshield wiper maintenance is an area many vehicle owners don’t consider regularly, and it’s easy to forget living in areas that might only require the use of the vehicle’s wiper blades one or two times a month. The simple fact is, you don’t want to get caught in the middle of a storm with windshield wiper blades that can’t perform at the highest level, leave streaks, or worst of all, damage your windshield while in use.
In this blog, we’ll examine the warning signs that your windshield wiper blades could use a replacement, how to find the right blades to keep your windshield clean and clear, and how you can replace your windshield wipers without the help of your local mechanic.
How Long do Windshield Wiper Blades Last?
It’s generally recommended that you replace your windshield wiper blades every 6-12 months. This might seem excessive at first, but windshield wiper blades must contend with several deteriorating conditions each drive. Ultraviolet light, exhaust fumes, airborne debris, and moisture can all cause a windshield wiper blade to break down over time.
Deterioration can result in cracks or tears in the rubber edge of the windshield wiper blade. These tears reduce the performance of the wiper, and over time, can be the cause of many common windshield wiper issues such as skipping, streaking, splitting, or squeaking. If you’re experiencing any of these issues common to windshield wiper blade deterioration, then it’s safe to say that it’s time to find the proper replacement.
How to Find the Right Windshield Wiper Blade for Your Vehicle
Finding a replacement set of windshield wipers can be easier said than done. Many automotive stores will have entire aisles full of windshield wiper blades, each with different sizes, features, and adaptors to connect to the vehicle’s wiper arm. It can be overwhelming if you aren’t sure, but if you come into your local Sanel NAPA location, you can speak with a sales associate who can help you find the correct wiper blades for your vehicle’s make, model, and year.
How to Replace Your Windshield Wiper Blades
Replacing your vehicle’s windshield wiper blades isn’t as difficult as you may think, but the process can be slightly different depending on which adapter your vehicle uses to attach the windshield wiper blade to the vehicle’s wiper arm. We’ll be discussing the two most common types of adapters: the hook-type wiper arm and the pin-type wiper arm.
The hook-type wiper blade arm uses a locking tab that keeps the wiper arm connected to the wiper blade. When replacing the windshield wiper blades on a hook-type wiper arm, you must first remove the old wiper blade by lifting the wiper arm and rotating the blade. Press down on the tab and push down firmly on the wiper blade until it disengages from the wiper arm.
Attaching a new wiper blade is even easier. All you need to do is slide the wiper arm hook around the windshield wiper blade fitting, then pull up until you hear a click.
When replacing a windshield wiper blade on a pin-type wiper arm, you must disengage the locking mechanism by pulling the tab upward. At this point, you will be able to remove the pin from the side of the wiper arm. After this step, the wiper blade can be removed.
To install a new wiper blade, you must first raise the tab slightly before inserting the wiper arm pin into the windshield wiper blade. Once completed, push down on the tab until you hear a click. Your blade should now be installed.
For more information on all things automotive, contact or visit the knowledgeable professionals at a Sanel NAPA location near you.
About Sanel NAPA
Since 1920, Sanel NAPA has been a leading auto parts, heavy-duty truck parts, and body shop supplies distributor with over 42 store locations throughout New Hampshire, Vermont, Maine, and Massachusetts. We deliver quality car parts, heavy-duty truck parts, automotive paint and body supplies, and tools and equipment that are durable, dependable, and long-lasting to provide our clientele with the best products and services possible. For more information, call (603) 225-4000 or click to find a store near you.