If the car is a few years old, there's a strong possibility that the
bearings at the base of the wiper blades are dry and/or seizing. It's
pretty easy to tell. Lift your wiper blades off the glass and turn the
wipers on. Watch the housings where the blades attach to the car. If the
housings twist as the blades move, the bearings are seizing and in need
of lubrication. Park the wipers, then take off the wiper arms. Remove
the rubber seals covering the wiper arm bearings and work some oil
(don't use thin spray lubes, they don't last long enough) in between the
shafts and the housings, then turn the wipers on. Continue to add oil as
it works its way into the bearings. When the shafts turn freely in the
housings, you're all set and you can reinstall the wiper arms. You'll
probably hear a difference in the wiper motor sound when the bearings
loosen up. It's saying "Ahhhhhhhh." ;-)
Even if your wipers are operating normally, lubricating the bearings
periodically is a good idea to keep them in good shape.
The bearings on the wiper arm linkage under the vent panel are all
plastic ball and socket joints that don't require lubrication. However,
I have seen the bearing closest to the motor break. If that happens, the
wipers don't clear as large of an area as normal and the area they do
clear is inconsistent.
Thank you for your help.
Go figure, the wipers are not binding at all now and I suspect it only
does that when it is raining.
So to remove the wiper arm is just a single hex bolt and the rubber
seal is visible only after the wiper arm is removed, correct?
You can usually see the seal without removing the arm, but you can't get
to it. It's been a while since I sold the Excel, so I may be wrong about
that. Removing the arm requires removing one nut, then rocking the arm a
bit to pop it loose from the shaft.
The nut is like an umbrella shape over the shaft. I removed this and
the arm. I do not see a rubber seal at the base of the shaft which is
surrounded by the vent cover. There is something like a plastic C
shaped cover but it is slightly under the vent cover. Any suggestions?
OK. I see where the rubber seal is. It is under a ring which does not
want to come off. On one side the ring is flush with the bearing
housing and the rubber seal is not visible. On the other side, part of
a broken rubber seal is sandwiched between the ring and the bearing
housing. Until I can get this off, I just put a lot of lube asis and
some of it must have worked in. Now I have a mess to clean up. Should
have clued in long ago when the nut showed signs of corrosion.
Any suggestions on how to remove the rubber seal?
Thank you for your time.
There is enough lube on the corroded pivot to stop the grind but at
times the wipers are still moving too slow. I could build a reservoir
of oil around the pivot, let it run and see if it will drink in more.
I found this article on wiper linkage rebuild.
Might just go for it.
By all means try to work in more oil until you're sure that the bearings
aren't binding. It could be that the motor bearings or the motor itself
is dying. Also, check to make sure that the motor is grounded.
The wiper system is pretty simple and it's no big deal to take it apart
and check it out thoroughly. I've was able to find parts in a junkyard
when I needed to repair mine.
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