Wipers are an essential safety item on any vehicle. Performing a visibility tune-up is all about making sure the blades make the best possible contact with the windshield. It can also lead to increased customer satisfaction and profits.
Blades & Park Position
A recent Car Care Council survey found that 16 percent of vehicles inspected had worn, damaged or missing wiper blades, and 23 percent (almost one out of four!) had little or no windshield washer fluid in their reservoirs.
Some late-model vehicles are now being factory equipped with flat or bracketless beam-style wiper blades. They have a number of advantages over conventional wiper blades, yet many new cars and trucks are still using the old-style blades. So, while the market is changing, conventional blades should be around for many years to come, providing replacement opportunities for your shop.
How the wipers sit on the windshield when not in use can influence the fuel mileage of a vehicle. Most vehicles have a “park” position that places the blades below the cowl of the hood when they’re off. If the wipers are not in the correct position, they will cause turbulence and poor fuel economy. They also may not have the correct wipe pattern.
Typically, repositioning the arms on the shafts can adjust the park position. But, wipers that are not parking properly can indicate a bad motor or module.
Wiper Arms & Washer Jets
The wiper blade is held down on the windshield with a spring in the arm that is always tensioned. But, over time, the spring can fatigue. This causes even the most expensive blade to streak and chatter due to uneven pressure throughout the wipe. Replacement arms are available. Never hesitate to recommend replacement; the driver will see the difference.
The jets that spray windshield fluid can become corroded and clogged. Most clogs can be cleaned with a needle, but replacements are available, if necessary.