If you’ve ever tried to drive during a torrential rainstorm, only to find out that your windshield wipers aren’t getting the job done, you know that this is not only frustrating but extremely dangerous. After all, not being able to see out of your windshield is essentially the same thing as driving along with a blindfold on. You have no way of knowing where you’re going and no way of knowing what you might be about to hit. Fortunately, there are ways that you can keep your wiper blades in great shape for a lot longer than you might have expected.
Make Sure You’re Using the Right Blades
One of the worst things you can do is use blades that aren’t made to fit your exact automobile. You’re likely to have problems if the blades don’t fit because they’re just a little too short or too long. In either situation, you’re a lot more likely to experience problems. If they’re a little bit too long, you’re probably going to end up with them tearing after the first time or two that you use them.
On the other hand, if they’re too short, they might not stay securely in place. You also might end up with a scratched windshield as the blade arm continues going over it again and again. In some cases, people choose to use what is known as universal blades. The thought behind this is that they will fit just about anything. The problem is, it’s virtually impossible for this to work properly. Every make and model of vehicle has a different size when it comes to the blades, so if you’re using something that is supposed to be a one-size-fits-all version, it probably isn’t going to work very well.
Change Them Regularly
For some reason, people have a tendency to drive around without changing their blades until they barely work anymore. They’re not designed to have a service life that equals the life of the car. Therefore, you should check them about every three months and see if they’re still in good shape. If they’re not, it’s time to replace them right away.
Even if they seem to be in relatively good shape, you definitely don’t want to keep them on the car for more than about four months. Any longer than that and blades that look like there’s nothing wrong with them can break quickly. The risk to your safety and the safety of other people on the road with you just isn’t worth it.
Keep Your Car Out of the Sun
One of the worst things you can do to the windshield wipers or any other surface of your car is to leave it sitting out in the sun day after day. You’d be surprised how much damage this can do over time. The problem is, it might not look like any noticeable damage has been done at first. This can lower you into a false sense of security where you think that everything is just fine.
The next thing you know, you have windshield wipers that don’t do their job, a dash that is cracked, and seats that are faded. It’s not good for your paint job either, so it’s really better to have some type of cover for your car so you can give it at least a certain degree of protection.
Make Sure They’re Installed Correctly
If you know how to put windshield wipers on your car properly, there’s no problem with you doing it yourself. However, it’s not always as easy as it looks. If you have any doubts about your ability to get them on the way they’re supposed to be, go ahead and let someone else do it. You can have a mechanic put them on whenever you get the oil changed and in most cases, you can have a technician at an auto parts stores do it when you purchase them.
Making sure that you can clearly see, especially in bad weather, is one of the most important things you can do to ensure your safety. When it comes to something as simple as windshield wiper blades, it just doesn’t make any sense to take risks. It’s a relatively simple thing, but it has the potential to save your life.