Critical Hyundai Wiper System Components You Need to Know About
If you're like the average Hyundai owner, you don't think about your wipers until something breaks. While wiper systems seem simple, there's more going on under the hood than you'd expect. Familiarity with the following components will help you to diagnose wiper problems.
Even the most technically clueless drivers can replace wiper blades when necessary. These silicone rubber slats keep your windshield free of debris and fluid when bad weather rears its ugly head. While blades can be had for as little as $20, you'll get more bang for your buck with pricier models.
Over time, the blade material breaks down and cracks due to friction and the elements. You can tell that your blades should be replaced if they leave streaks on your windows or fail to wipe water away in a uniform fashion. Fortunately, blades can be swapped out in less than a minute if you're handy.
Generally speaking, you'll only need to replace your wiper blades once a year. You can make them last longer by purchasing a winter-specific set if you live in colder climates. Furthermore, you should park in the shade when possible to avoid UV damage to the blade pads. Finally, never scrape your windshield when the blades are down.
Also known as a wiper linkage, the transmission assembly is a series of rods connected by pivot points. It transmits power from the wiper motor to the wiper arms to propel the blades back and forth across the windshield. They ensure that blades move with a smooth motion in challenging conditions.
Over time, the slender metal rods in a transmission or linkage can bend, rust or fracture and cause the unit to fail. It's pretty easy to tell if your old linkage hardware is on the bubble. You'll notice a lot of stutter, vibration, hesitation and out-of-sync wiper operation if your linkage needs to be replaced.
If you want your transmission assembly to last for years, preventative maintenance is vital. Lubricate the pivot points once a year to ensure smooth movement. While you're at it, coat the roads with WD-40 or a similar product to combat rust. It takes a lot less time to prevent linkage breakdown than to replace the part.
As you might expect, the wiper system motor powers the linkage so that it can actuate the wiper arms and blades. It takes electricity from the alternator and transforms it into mechanical energy when you need it most to clean off your windshield. A quality motor can cost over $200 depending on the model.
Like any automotive electrical component, the wiper motor eventually breaks down due to heat, friction and rust. You'll know that your motor needs to be replaced if you experience glitch-prone wiper performance including sluggish movement and blades that stop in the wrong position. The good news is that motors are easy to install using a few hand tools.
If you want your motor to last a long time, it's best to go easy on your wipers. For one thing, you should never activate your wipers if you don't have any fluid in the reservoir. Dry wiping will prematurely wear down your motor. If possible, you should regularly clean the motor to prevent rust.
Your washer pump performs the crucial task of sucking fluid from the reservoir and directing it through the nozzles onto your windshield. This simple but vital part is cheap and easy to repair or replace. A quality replacement part can cost as little as $10 if you go through an OEM vendor.
For the most part, a washer fluid pump should last the life of the Hyundai you're driving. They tend to fail or produce lackluster performance when the nozzles inside them become clogged. You can tell that your pump is faulty if you get a weak stream or the pump doesn't immediately activate when you hit the controls.
There's not a lot that you can do to prevent your pump from eventually becoming clogged. If you suspect that there's a blockage, you can simply disassemble it and use a paper clip to dislodge debris. If you do have to swap it out, it should only take about 10 minutes to perform the repair.
The plastic reservoir that holds your windshield washer fluid is the simplest component of the whole wiper system. It's just a jug that's affixed to the side of the engine bay with a hose leading to the fluid pump. Unless you get into a major wreck, it'll last for decades or more.
The two problems that you'll encounter the most when it comes to fluid reservoirs are cracks and tube seals. If you have a leak in the reservoir area, it'll be pretty obvious. Eventually, you may see a slight leak towards the bottom of the reservoir that you'll need to patch with something like RTV silicon.
There's really no preventative maintenance schedule prescribed for fluid reservoirs since they generally never fail. If you feel like going above and beyond the call of duty, you can detach the reservoir occasionally and wash out the interior with rubbing alcohol or another solvent. This will prevent tiny particles of gunk from clogging up pumps, lines and spray nozzles.
Obviously, your wiper system needs a way to conduct fluid from the pump to the nozzles. Like most other makes, Hyundai uses flexible EPDM rubber tubing to get the job done. Tubing is unsurprisingly quite cheap and costs just a few dollars for a 6-foot section that can repair any leak.
Over time, temperature swings and UV radiation from the sun can break down the rubber in your Hyundai's tubing and cause it to fail. Oftentimes, cracks will quickly appear that allow fluid to spray out before it can hit your nozzles. This results in wasted washer fluid and unnecessary rust if you don't quickly solve the problem.
There's not much that you can do to keep tubing from failing. Since it's cheap and easy to replace, the smartest thing that you can do is keep extra tubing on hand so that you can fix a leak immediately when it occurs. Tubing slips onto the pump and nozzle nubs without the need for adhesive.
For the most part, nozzles are simply chunks of plastic with narrow holes drilled through them. As the last stop for fluid headed to the windshield, nozzles are prone to jams. They accumulate debris from the fluid itself and can easily become clogged with environmental contaminants like sap, bird droppings and pollen.
Your nozzles should last forever even if an oak tree falls on your hood. They're virtually indestructible and easy to clean if you know what you're doing. You should probably replace or service them if you notice weak or erratic fluid streams while driving. A quality OEM Hyundai nozzle will cost you less than $15.
If you care about reliable windshield wiper performance, you should clean out your nozzles with a dental pick or paper clip regularly. It's also a smart idea to check the positioning of the nozzles once in a while to ensure that you're not wasting washer fluid by failing to hit your windshield in the right spots.
The Right Wiper Parts for Your Hyundai
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