Windshield Wiper Buying Guide

Good windshield wipers are vital when the weather turns bad. Learn about the types of wiper blades, as well as maintenance tips, in this buying guide.

Windshield Wipers 101

Though it’s easy to forget about your windshield wipers, when you’re suddenly in the middle of a summer downpour or a frigid snowstorm your windshield wipers become one of the most important parts of your car. Streaky, squeaky blades that don’t clean your windshield properly are more than a nuisance — they’re a hazard, so if poor wipers are affecting your visibility, you need a new pair. Don’t save wiper blade maintenance for a rainy day — you’ll be glad you’re ready when a storm hits.

Windshield Wiper Basics


Wiper Styles

There are a few different types of wiper blades for different driving and weather conditions:
Conventional wiper blades are good for normal driving conditions, but they don’t perform as well in snowy weather, and are also susceptible to wind lift.
• For heavy winter driving, reach for winter wiper blades. These blades are made with a rubber boot to swipe snow and ice away from the windshield.
Flex or beam wiper blades are versatile, making them a good choice for year-round wipers. They feature an aerodynamic design, which prevents wind lift, and they’re also good at preventing ice and snow build-up.
Hybrid wiper blades are the best of everything. They’re designed to provide a cleaner swipe, are resistant to wind lift, and offer protection for winter driving.
Water repellant coatings and silicone wiper blades help swipe away rain and sleet. The wiper blade applies a water-repellant coating to the windshield to cause water, ice and snow to bead off the surface. Silicone wiper blades also repel water, and generally last longer than rubber.
Important reminder: always check the size of your wiper blade before you start shopping.

When to Replace Your Wiper Blades

Mother nature isn’t always kind to wiper blades. Freezing temperatures, scorching sunlight, salty air from coastal climates, and mud and dirt can all chew away at the rubber on your wipers and lead them to stutter, streak or squeak.
Check your wipers often and aim to change them every six months to a year, or when you notice they’re no longer performing well.
• Make sure that the rubber on your wipers is flexible and nick- and crack-free
• Check the frame for any damage or corrosion to the joints, claws or connection points
• Your wipers should make as much contact with the windshield as possible. Look out for anything that might prevent a clean swipe.
If you live somewhere where winter hits hard, remember to change your windshield wipers in the summer to avoid damage from heat and sun.

Wiper Blade Tips:

Just like any other part of your car, you can help to extend the life of your wiper blades by taking care of them.
• Every time you stop top up your gas tank, take a few minutes to wash your windshield to wash away dirt, salt or other debris that could affect your wipers
• Try to park your car inside or in shady areas away from direct sunlight
• Change your winter wipers in the summer to prevent cracking to the rubber
• Never use your windshield wipers to get rid of snow and ice: always use an ice scraper or your defroster
• During snowy winter months, lift your wiper blades away from the windshield to protect your rubber squeegee from ice build-up and sticking

Shop Accessories & Related Products:

This article is intended as general information. Always be sure to read and follow the label(s)/instruction(s) that accompany your product(s). Walmart will not be responsible for any injury or damage caused by this activity.



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