Top 5 Reasons Your Windshield Wipers Aren't Working

What to Do If Your Windshield Wipers Stop Working?

If you ever find yourself in such a situation, and

If you ever find yourself in such a situation, and you’ve only realized this now without ever getting the chance to notice that the symptoms of bad windshield wipers exist in your vehicle, here’s what you should do:

Stay Calm

If you brake abruptly or swerve in traffic, you could become involved in an accident. And you do want to avoid an accident, right?

The key thing to do is not panic – instead, stay calm, slowly decelerate and check the situation.

If you can see well enough to keep driving, even if at a slower speed, do so. If you’re on a highway, your best bet will be to get to the nearest gas station.

Keep Your Distance

If it’s raining, keep your distance from the car in front of you.

You don’t want them to spray even more muddy water on your windshield, as this is only going to make your life more difficult than it already is right now.

Also, since you’re driving with reduced visibility, it’s generally considered a good idea to maintain a greater distance from the vehicle in front of you anyway.

Focus Closely

The situation will resemble driving when it’s snowing or foggy, so you need to be focused and alert.

Turn down the music, check the mirrors more often, go slow and be extra careful with everything you do.

Do not attempt to clean your windshield while driving, whether you’re considering doing so with your hand or a rag.

Pull Over

When it’s finally safe to do so, pull over and stop the car.

If your windshield was simply dirty because someone passed you and sprayed mud or other debris on it, clean it. You’ll then be able to safely reach a service station or repair shop.

Assess the Problem

After safely pulling over, check what the problem is.

If you can fix windshield wipers right then and there, and have the spare auto parts needed, go ahead and do so. If not, either wait for the rain to stop, or call for help.

It’s always best not to drive long distances with poor visibility, unless you absolutely have no other choice but to do so.

Final Thoughts

In this article, we’ve seen that windshield wipers are a pretty simple (yet delicate) part of cars. Even when you forget they exist on sunny days, when it starts pouring, that’ll be a completely different story!

You’re now aware about some of the most common reasons your windshield wipers malfunction, and you know all about what to do if they were to stop working abruptly.

You now also know what you need to do to make sure they continue to work well and don’t start causing any inconvenient problems anytime soon.

Before we sign off, we want to leave you with a curious fact: Did you know that the first ever hand-operated windshield wipers were invented in 1903 by a woman from Alabama? 20 years later, a motor was added, and they haven’t changed much since then.

For now, have a safe driving experience!


What Causes The Link Rods To Come Off?

The most common reason for the link rod jumping off is to wear and tear on the link rod plastic bushing. Other reasons include:

  • Heavy packed snow on windshield
  • Frozen wipers
  • Incorrect wiper blades
  • Wiper blade timing
  • Worn wiper blades
  • Worn wiper spindle
  • Operating wipers on dry windshield
  • Wiper arm vandalism

Wear and tear:

Link rods are attached to the wiper motor and also to the wiper spindles. They are attached by a bushing, commonly a plastic socket on the link rod, a metal ball on the motor, and a wiper spindle.

The plastic bushings simply wear out and refitting it may work for a while but eventually will need to be replaced.

Heavy Snow:

Turning on the wipers to clear heavy snow will cause excess pressure on the link arm bushings. You’ll find when link rods jump off once, they’ll keep jumping off.

Frozen wipers:

When wipers are stuck to the windshield solid, turning them on as you can imagine just like packed snow, causes huge pressure on the plastic rod link bushings.

Wrong wiper blades:

Wiper blades that are too long can catch in each other and also ride over the window edge which will load up the link rods.

Wiper timing off:

Wipers overlap as you know, but over time as the mechanism wears, the timing goes out. This can cause the wipers to catch in extreme weather conditions.

Worn wipers blades:

Worn-out wiper blades won’t slide across the windshield like new ones, that too puts a load on the rods.

Worn spindle:

The spindles are what the wiper arms are fixed to. They work hard and can bind as they get older. The binding can cause the link rods to pop off.

Dry windshield:

Running the wipers on a dry windshield can cause the links to jump off, but the real problem is as you know a worn-out link rod socket bushing.

3. The windshield wiper fuse has burned out

If your fuse burns out, it was probably by design. If your wiper motor is being overloaded, the fuse will automatically burn out – its way of shutting down and protecting the more expensive wiper motor. The question becomes, what caused the fuse to go out? If it happened during inclement weather, snow is a possible culprit. Before you install a new wiper, inspect the motor and see if something is obstructing it. Try replacing the fuse and if that does not make a difference, have a professional look at it.

What Can Cause Windshield Wipers to Stop Working? 7 Different Problem Categories and How to Fix Them, No Need to Fuss About the Fuse

Apparently there’s a lot of reasons why your windshield wipers are not working, but luckily, we know a solution for every case. You might not know how to replace U-joints or how to disconnect a car alarm, but there’s enough time to learn. We learn as we drive, and with every situation, you’ll get to know your vehicle a bit better. So, how to fix windshield wipers that won’t move? Don’t let driving anxiety kick in. There’s a solution for everything.

5. Need to tighten your wiper pivot nuts

A pivot nut connects the wiper arms to the wiper transmission. When that nut is loose, which is not uncommon, the motor will still work and turn the pivot, but the wiper arm will remain static, or you could find that only one wiper works. If either of these scenarios happens, inspect the pivot points and ensure they are firmly connected. This issue can be resolved by simply tightening the pivot nuts and should not require replacing the wipers.

If your windshield wipers stopped working even after you tried these five remedies, this could mean the problem is more complicated and that a comprehensive inspection of your entire coolant system may be necessary. One windshield wiper not working or both windshield wipers not working could mean different things. We recommend finding the reliable auto repair shop near you for an expert opinion. If you got in an auto accident and need high quality collision repair, Fix Auto USA is open for business and ready to serve you.

This blog post was contributed by Fix Auto Kearny Mesaa leading industry expert and collision repair shop servicing Kearny Mesa and surrounding areas in San Diego.


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