How to replace windshield wiper refills

Written by melissa worcester
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How to replace windshield wiper refills
Changing your wiper blade refills can save you money over replacing the entire blade. (Sur la route image by val� ©rie Beunardeau from

Blades are the main part of windshield wipers, and each has several parts. The wiper arm moves the blade back and forth. The wiper bar is the horizontal part, and the wiper refill is the rubber part that wipes water away. The wiper blade consists of the wiper bar and the wiper refill, and this is more expensive to replace than replacing the refill only.

Skill level:

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Things you need

  • Needle-nose pliers
  • Tape measure

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  1. 1

    Measure your car's windshield wiper blades. You should know their exact length and your car's make, model and year of manufacture. Purchase wiper blade refills that will fit your car. Most stores have a chart you can consult to find the correct size for your car. Double-check to make sure the length is correct.

  2. 2

    Pivot one of your car's windshield wiper arms away from the windshield. For most cars, wiper arms will stay in place at about a 90-degree angle with the windshield.

  3. 3

    Examine the clips that hold the blade refill in the blade arm to determine how they work. Most can be pinched to release the grip on a blade refill. Use the needle-nose pliers to do this, and slide the old blade out of the blade arm.

  4. 4

    Slide the new blade refill in, using roughly a reverse motion to the one you used when removing the old one. Remove the pliers, and make sure the clips hold the blade refill securely.

  5. 5

    Return the blade arm to the proper location.

  6. 6

    Repeat Steps 2 through 5 for the other windshield wiper.

Tips and warnings

  • You can give your wiper blades a longer life by cleaning your windshield every time you get a tank of gas. When you do this, wipe the blades with a damp cloth to make sure you remove any dirt that could damage the blades or scratch the windshield.

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