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How Often Should I Change My Windshield Wipers

How Often Should I Change My Windshield Wipers?


When you consider car maintenance, taking care of your windshield wipers likely isn’t the first thing that comes to mind. Generally, we don’t think about our wipers unless the weather requires us to, and even then we often only notice them if they’re not working right. But while wiper maintenance may seem like a small matter, failing to properly maintain your windshield wipers can have big consequences.


As the rubber blade on your windshield wipers deteriorates from wear and tear, it exposes the metal or plastic underneath. When a compromised blade sweeps across your windshield, it can scratch the glass, causing cumulative damage that may eventually require expensive repairs. And of course, if your wipers are slow or sticky during a major downpour or blizzard—or if they stop working entirely—you can quickly find yourself in danger. But how do you know when to change your wipers?

Watch for signs of deterioration

One way to tell when your wipers are nearing the end of their lifespan is to listen. As the rubber blade wears away, it will often start making squeaking noises as it sticks against the glass of your windshield. Damaged or failing windshield wipers may also click or vibrate, especially if some of their components have come loose, or if they’re moving at an uneven rate. In addition to signaling that your wipers are damaged, these sounds can be downright annoying, so you’ll want to keep up with maintenance in order to avoid them.


Another pretty apparent sign that your windshield wipers are not long for this world is if they’re not wiping your windshield effectively. If the glass is wet, streaky, or blurry with rain even when the wipers are running, it’s probably time for a new set.

Making your wipers last

Being coated in ice or weighed down with wet leaves can hasten your wipers’ demise, so take steps at home to lengthen their usefulness by keeping them clean. If your windshield is icy, run the defroster to soften and melt the ice before subjecting your wipers to a rough surface. When your wipers run over dirt and debris stuck to your windshield, they can be damaged, so it’s wise to clean your windshield regularly. Running your wipers when your windshield is dry can also damage them, so be sure your wiper fluid is always topped off. And if there’s snow in the weather forecast, prop your wipers up so they don’t get frozen and stuck.

When should I change my wipers?

The best way to avoid issues is to have your windshield wipers checked regularly for signs of damage, and changed on a regular schedule. Most professionals recommend changing your wipers at least once a year, and more frequently if you live in a climate with extreme temperatures that are hard on the rubber and require you to use your wipers often.


A professional will also be able to tell if what seems like a matter of blade deterioration is really a more serious issue, like a malfunction of the mechanism that operates the wipers. To ensure your wipers are being properly serviced, you’ll want to find a mechanic you can trust. To do that, click here to learn about the benefits of your local AAA club.