Prepare Your Windshield for Winter (Wiper Blades and Fluid for Freezing Temperatures)Posted November 29, 2020 11:55 AM
Winter and freezing temperatures present challenges for different parts of your vehicles. For example, winter tires give you better traction on snow. But some parts of your vehicle that may need special attention for winter are your windshield wipers. You may have found yourself in the middle of a snowstorm when your windshield wipers are doing nothing but streaking slush that ices up on contact on the glass. Now you're more blind than you were before!
Obviously being able to see during a snowy or icy winter event is important for the safe operation of any vehicle. So keeping your windshield and rear window clean can go a long way to guarantee you can see your surroundings.
Let's start with the wipers. Blades that are good for hot weather may not be robust enough for freezing weather. You can buy special winter wiper blades that stay flexible during sub-zero temperatures. The stiffer frames that hold them have a rubber covering that prevents ice and snow from building up. Another style is beam wipers that have a one-piece design, intended for use all year long. Since these have no separate frame, ice can't build up like on traditional frame wipers.
If you've ever had salty road brine kicked up on your windshield, you know it can blind you in a second. So you absolutely must have windshield washer fluid available to clear your vision. The fluid you use during the warm weather months will often freeze below 32°F/0°C, and that can actually make things worse by icing up your windshield when you spray it. Worst of all, it may freeze in your washer reservoir.
Be sure to use washer fluid that is meant for sub-freezing temperatures; special formulas will remain a liquid in weather as cold as -30°F/-34.4°C. Some contain alcohol to keep them flowing; some have a little antifreeze that will melt snow and ice. If you do use these liquids, make sure to keep them away from small children and pets because they're poisonous if they drink them.
Each climate is different, and there are windshield products to meet your needs. Your service advisor can recommend which ones will work best for you. The idea is in winter, you need to be able to see.
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