A lot of times, when people talk of safety features in a car, they mention the latest anti-skid tyres, seatbelts, airbags, and numerous other things. But seldom does one hear the mention of the windshield wipers! These unassuming and often dismissed features are in fact critical for your safety on the road.
Even during car service or regular car maintenance, car owners can be heard talking about their windshield crack or windscreen repair required, but one rarely ever notices talking about the windshield wipers. These tiny blades that are rarely visible when not in use, seem to be just another part of the car that one doesn’t even think about. However, one long stretch during a dust storm or heavy rain, and this feature suddenly becomes of utmost importance in maintaining a clear view of the road.
An important safety feature
We often hear of timely windscreen repairs for minor chips or scratches that may hinder visibility or compromise the strength of the glass and in turn safety of the passengers. But what about visibility that is affected due to external sources such as dirt, dust, rain, or snow? Smudges of dirt on your windshield or constant pelting of raindrops can also lower visibility drastically and affect your safety on the road.
To clear these elements and keep your windshield and view clear, you will need to deploy the windshield wipers. When combined with the windshield washer system, a jet of washer fluid is released on the windshield glass which is then wiped away by the wipers, simultaneously also clearing any dirt or dust. During rain or snow, the constant drops on the windshield can distort vision and reduce reaction time which can have serious harmful consequences. However, the windshield wipers can clear these flakes or drops instantly offering you complete visibility and safety.
Thus, even though the windshield wipers play a crucial role in everyone’s safety on the road, people tend to forget about them or neglect them in their care routine. So often it happens that one switches on the wiper system in an emergency situation, only to discover a squeaking sound accompanying the wiper blades without proper clearing. Driving during a rain storm with such low visibility can be quite hazardous and difficult. In addition, this sound of the wiper blades can further scratch your windshield glass as it generally indicates a damaged rubber lining on the blades.
Maintaining your windshield wiper blades
So, to maintain clear visibility and enjoy the view while driving, it is advisable to keep a clear windshield glass with good quality wiper blades. While most auto experts recommend replacing your windshield wipers every six months to a year based on your usage, it is also advised to routinely check them for any damage. Not only will this help ensure your wiper blades are ready to use in any urgent situation but also protect your windshield glass against possible damage. On a regular basis be sure to clean the blades with a soft towel to clean away any dust or dirt stuck on them. Also, it is advisable to check your washer system has the optimum amount of fluid in it to help the wiper clean the windshield properly.
Now, in addition to cleaning your wiper blades, there are also certain signs to watch out for that may indicate damage. These include rust or corrosion on the ends, a slight separation of the blades from the frame and cracks or tears in the rubber lining along the blade, among others. Any of these changes in the windshield wipers can be dangerous while on the road as it leads to an unclean and possibly scratched windshield along with reduced visibility. Another problem that can occur if the rubber lining isn’t in proper condition is large streaking lines along the windshield. Here the wiper blade is unable to clear the rain water and instead leaves large streaks of it on the windshield glass.
Apart from extensive usage in harsh conditions, there are several environmental factors that can over time damage your windshield wiper system leading to reduced visibility and increased chance of collision. These include dirt and dust stuck in the blades, damage caused due to long term ultraviolet radiation, contact with acid rain, and corrosion due to salt water contact in tropic areas.
Thus, be sure to regularly check and clean the wiper blades while getting them replaced every 6 months to a year. These blades are quite inexpensive to replace while being a huge investment in your safety. For more information please check with a trained technician at your service provider.
Content Source: Windshield Experts