A lot of things can cause your windshield wipers to malfunction. These include a blown fuse, faulty wiring, corroded parts, or a busted wiper motor. The first thing you need to do is rule out all the other possible problems. So check the fuse and see if it has the proper amp rating. If the fuse is ok, check all the other mechanical components such as the wiper arms, switch, and joints. If everything seems to be in good working condition, it's time to take a look at the motor.
Troubleshooting the motor
To troubleshoot a possibly problematic motor, you need to check if it gets the right amount of voltage. So arm yourself with a pair of jumper cables and transmit around 12 volts into the power connector pin of the motor. If the motor doesn't respond, then it's busted and is in need of replacement.
Replacing the busted wiper motor
Fortunately, installing a new motor is easy. Equip yourself with the tools listed below and follow the instructions to get the motor up and running in no time:
- Wire splicer
Step 1: Locate your car's wiper motor.
The motor is usually located on your car's firewall and is placed between the driving compartment and the engine. However, the exact location depends on your car make and model. So, consult your vehicle manual when you're having trouble finding the motor.
Step 2: Remove the wiper blade assembly.
Depending on your vehicle type, you might need to open the hood and remove the cowl trim to access the wiper assembly. Be sure to check with your vehicle manual when figuring out which parts to remove in order to reach the wiper blade assembly and motor. Using a ratchet with a socket, remove the hex nut that attaches the wiper arm onto your vehicle. Keep on twisting the ratchet until the hex nut becomes loose and you're able to pull off the wiper arm. Make sure that you've also disconnected the blade assembly from the motor.
Step 3: Remove the old motor.
Locate the mounting bolts and remove them with a socket. Once you've removed the bolts, pull out the motor. Be careful not to damage or nick nearby components.
Step 4: Install the new motor.
Put the new wiper motor in position, making sure that its mount holes are aligned with the mounting bolts on the firewall. Push the motor in place and lock it in position by mounting the nuts (except for the grounding strap nut) with a wrench or ratchet.
Step 5: Reinstall the wiper blade assembly.
Once you've attached the new motor, reinstall the wiper blade assembly. Reconnect it to the motor and place it back in position. Secure it by mounting the hex nut you've removed earlier.
Step 6: Secure the wiper motor's grounding strap.
Attach the grounding strap's other end onto the mounting bolt and secure it with a nut. Tighten it according to manufacturer's torque specifications. Also, make sure that mounting nuts are tightened in a star pattern so that the motor is snugly flushed against your car's firewall. Once you've tightened all the nuts and reinstalled all the other parts you've removed to access the wiper blade assembly and motor, you can now test the motor with an ohms meter.