Wiper Switch: Things to Consider When Buying a Replacement
The wiper switch enables the driver to change the speed at which the wiper arms move. Since it is an electrical component, the contacts inside it can corrode and wear out over time, causing the wipers to work intermittently or not function at all. If you think the wiper switch in your ride has failed, replace it as soon as possible. There are a lot of choices available in the market, but important factors should come into play when deciding which wiper switch to purchase.
What kind of wiper switch should you get?
The type of wiper switch you should buy will depend on the kind of windshield wiper system installed in your ride, so you'd better check your owner's manual first. Some wiper assemblies come with a wiper switch designed for windshield wipers only; others employ a multi-function switch, which controls the operations of other vehicle components such as the turn signal, high and low beam dimmer, windshield washer, and cruise control.
Besides technical specifications, it's also wise to look at the product's quality, durability, and reliability.
What other factors should you consider when choosing a wiper switch?
To get the most bang for your buck, make sure the replacement wiper switch you'll get is tested under strict standards. It must possess some, if not all, of these qualities:
Corrosion resistance.A wiper switch that can hold up to abrasions and environmental corrosion is definitely a good buy.
High-quality materials. For better electrical conductivity and low resistive losses, invest in a wiper switch that employs quality conductors.
Easy installation. You can save a considerable amount of money if you'll do the installation by yourself. If you're a novice DIYer, a unit that's easy to install, without a need for splicing or cutting, can help you pull the task off in less the time and effort.
Warranty. Longer coverage means more reliable component, so go for a switch that's backed by a reasonable manufacturer warranty.
Wiper Switch: How to Remove the Old and Install a New One
Over time, age and constant use will take their toll on your wiper switch, rendering it useless and no longer capable of working in all settings. To stay safe while driving in the rain or in a dusty area and to restore the functions of other components that rely on the switch, have your malfunctioning wiper switch replaced as soon as possible. With just a few tools and this step-by-step guide, you can get the job done well without the help of a pro.
Difficulty level: Moderate
What you'll need:
- Replacement wiper switch
- Ratchet set
Step 1: Set the key to the "on" position to power all interior accessories. Look for the wiper switch on the steering column and turn it on. Inspect the operations of the wipers in different speeds. Put the key to the "off" setting.
Step 2: Open the hood and disconnect the negative battery cable from the battery. If necessary, remove the battery cable using the ratchet set. CAUTION: Don't touch the positive side of the battery so as not to shock yourself in the removal process.
Step 3: Loosen and remove the screws that secure the cover to the steering column. Take the steering cover off.
Step 4: Disconnect the wiper wiring harness from the steering wheel. With the pliers, disconnect the wires.
Step 5: Remove the old switch by unscrewing it from the steering wheel. Get the replacement switch and connect it to the steering wheel using the pliers. Hook up all the wires and the wiring harness.
Step 6: Align the mounting hole of the new switch to the mounting holes located on the steering column. Securely screw the replacement switch in place.
Step 7: Put the steering column cover back in its place. Using the screwdriver, thread and tighten the mounting screws to secure the cover to the steering column.
Step 8: Reconnect the negative battery cable.
Step 9: Test the new wiper switch by turning your key to the half on position. See if the internal components of the vehicle turn on even without the engine running. Turn on the new switch and try all settings. If you notice that the blades aren't working well, adjust the position of the switch or the wiring until the blades function as smoothly as before.
Even if you're a novice DIYer, you can easily complete this repair all by yourself in less than an hour.