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Wiper arm tension. How much is enough?

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Old 01-21-2018, 07:50 AM
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Wiper arm tension. How much is enough?

After two sets, my wipers just smear the water, one set bounced, and are noisy as can be. When we got snow, THEY DIDN'T EVEN TOUCH THE WATER! Just swept over it all like nothing.
How can I tell if I need new arms or just got two different brand sets of bad blades? Glass is as clean as I could get it with alcohol and windex. Not greasy smear though.
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Old 01-21-2018, 08:27 AM
DogRidesInBack DogRidesInBack is offline
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What blades are you running? I'll use blades from the parts store when I have to, but really prefer OEM. And since OEMs last longer than the parts-store blades, they really are not that much more expensive.

And I get much better wiping after I clean the blades with alcohol when I do the windows.
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Old 01-21-2018, 08:42 AM
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Tried it with michellen and bosch. Wonder what a set of Motorcraft would run me and where I can find them on a Sunday....
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Old 01-21-2018, 08:52 AM
DogRidesInBack DogRidesInBack is offline
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Originally Posted by Cruiseomatic View Post
Tried it with michellen and bosch. Wonder what a set of Motorcraft would run me and where I can find them on a Sunday....
Well, if you need something today, try the Bosch Icons (IIRC, Bosch makes several grades/models of wipers). Clean then with alcohol before first use to get the molding compound off of them; clean the window again too. Also, don't just get the refills, get the entire blade.

The last time I bought at the parts store, I got Trico. They streaked a bit, and lasted about 6 months. By then, I had stopped by a stealership and picked up the right ones for the vehicle. The Icons are rated better, but the price was higher too.
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Old 01-21-2018, 10:02 AM
Chuck's First Ford Chuck's First Ford is offline
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cleaning the blade.. 3 sides... bottom, left and right.. it matters.

the release agent is not easy to get off of glass.
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Old 01-21-2018, 12:17 PM
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cleaning the blade.. 3 sides... bottom, left and right.. it matters.

the release agent is not easy to get off of glass.
A little fine grade sandpaper does wonders on the wiper blades when they start to smear.


OP - how much are you spending on the wiper blades? I've found around 20 each buys good ones.
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Old 01-21-2018, 03:31 PM
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Thanks for this post....after reading it “yesterday” today my wiper needed replacing.....
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Old 01-21-2018, 08:15 PM
geekwithoutacause geekwithoutacause is online now
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Do you have stock length wiper blades?
I bought longer wiper blades and had the same thing. The spring in the arm is worn out and doesn't put enough pressure down. It needs new arms. Haven't done it yet but I know it's possible to run longer blades, I had it on a previous truck and it worked fine.
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Old 01-21-2018, 08:23 PM
ligito ligito is offline
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New blades from Ford dealer, around $20 per pair, installed.
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Old 01-21-2018, 09:27 PM
FractureCritical FractureCritical is online now
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I had issues with weird spots on the windshield that the wipers wouldn't touch. seemed like the arms weren't putting enough force behind the blades to get the rubber blade to hit every where on the glass. Tried a few different blades with same results.

Ultimately just bent the steel wiper arm towards the glass to get get more tension in the spring in the arm. It' fairly thin, you can do it by hand. That worked. I think the spring just lost tension over the years. Might want to try that.
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Old 01-21-2018, 09:29 PM
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Originally Posted by FractureCritical View Post
I had issues with weird spots on the windshield that the wipers wouldn't touch. seemed like the arms weren't putting enough force behind the blades to get the rubber blade to hit every where on the glass. Tried a few different blades with same results.

Ultimately just bent the steel wiper arm towards the glass to get get more tension in the spring in the arm. It' fairly thin, you can do it by hand. That worked. I think the spring just lost tension over the years. Might want to try that.
How far did you bend it ? Doesn't that look weird?
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Old 01-21-2018, 09:33 PM
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Originally Posted by geekwithoutacause View Post
How far did you bend it ? Doesn't that look weird?
I put about a 1/2" bow in it. you can't even tell it's there.
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Old 01-21-2018, 09:35 PM
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Bosch Icons are a great wiper.
It sounds like you have a lack of pressure. It should take some effort to lift them off the glass manually. You can purchase add on helper springs, but bending the arm or replacing the arm and spring would be cleaner looking.
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Old 01-22-2018, 12:08 AM
dwysywd dwysywd is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cruiseomatic View Post
After two sets, my wipers just smear the water, one set bounced, and are noisy as can be. When we got snow, THEY DIDN'T EVEN TOUCH THE WATER! Just swept over it all like nothing.
How can I tell if I need new arms or just got two different brand sets of bad blades? Glass is as clean as I could get it with alcohol and windex. Not greasy smear though.
I had the SAME exact problem. These guys are right, it's tension on the arm. Problem is, once your man-handle the arm it's like it never really responds correctly. And you keep needing to readjust. So, my solution is to order new OEM arms. The "bend-it" solution only works for a year or so. Just IMHO.
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Old 01-22-2018, 12:43 AM
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The bend it method worked, But both the michellen and bosch pull water back on the down pass and still noisy as hell. Getting an OEM set in the morning. But, bending the arms did help dramatically. Just need to get by for now. If it lasts a year like this, great.
Jeez, It seems with these trucks only OEM stuff works like it should. None of the aftermarket really does ironically.
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