Squeaky, streaky or visibly worn blades on your windscreen wipers suggest it’s time for new ones – here’s how you can swap them over yourself in six easy steps.You can fit just new wiper blades or replace the whole wiper blade assembly depending on whether the wear or damage is only to the rubber blade or to the wiper assembly, too – they’re both readily available from spare parts stores.
Check the application guide at the spare parts store to find the right wiper blade width to suit your car – or measure the blade claw width yourself. The choice between universal or specific fit, plastic or metal backed, single and multiple edge, or rubber or silicone blades is yours.
The windscreen wiper assemblies are spring loaded against the glass. Lift them fully from the windscreen and remove the old blades. After the blades have been removed be careful not to let the wiper arms spring back or they could damage the glass.
Remove each of the old wiper blades by squeezing the clip on the end and sliding the blade from the wiper assembly – you might need a pair of long-nose pliers to help you release the clip.
Slide the new wiper blade through the claws on the wiper assembly until the clip clicks in at the end – universal wiper blades have two sets of grooves, the upper to suit 6.5mm wiper arms and the lower to suit 8.5mm. Make sure the claws are in the right groove – and that you haven’t missed any claws – to ensure the blades can’t come loose and cause damage to your windscreen.
If you’re using universal blades or blades that aren’t exactly the right length, cut off the end of the blade opposite the clip using cutters or scissors, leaving about 3cm sticking out from the claw on the end.
Carefully lower the wiper assembly back onto the windscreen. Check that your windscreen washer bottle is full of water and add some wash additive if you wish. Now, check that the wipers work correctly using the car’s windscreen washer function. (Turning the wipers on without water present might scratch the glass).