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Checking Your Blades

Checking Your Blades

A simple check is to try your windshield washers. If the blades are not in good condition, you'll see why when they attempt to wipe the washer solvent off the glass. Streaking, chattering or any other problems will be clearly obvious.

This test also gives you the opportunity to check your windshield washer system. Do both squirters work? If not, a nozzle may be plugged with dirt or a hose may be kinked or loose. Does the spray hit the windshield where it is supposed to? If not, the nozzles need adjusting. Does the washer pump deliver an adequate stream of solvent? If not, the vehicle may have a weak washer pump, or a clogged, kinked or loose hose. Most washer reservoirs have a screen to filter out debris that could clog or damage the pump. If this screen itself is buried under debris, it can choke off the flow of solvent to the washers.

After you've checked the windshield wipers, check the rear wiper too if your vehicle has a rear wiper system. Many sport utility vehicles, vans, minivans, station wagons, hatchbacks and fastbacks do. After all, it's just as important to see what's behind you when backing up in the rain as it is to see what's ahead. You can use the same test (try the rear windshield washer, if so equipped), or simply spray some water onto the glass with a squeeze bottle and see how the wiper performs.