National average cost of a a Windshield Wiper Linkage Replacement for popular vehicles:
Avg. cost $95
Avg. cost $427
Dodge Grand Caravan
Avg. cost $143
What is a windshield wiper linkage and how does it work?
Windshield wiper linkage is a term associated with the metal rods or arms that connect or “link” the windshield wiper motor to the wiper arms and blades. The linkage is also responsible for synchronizing the movement of both of the wiper blades. Like the wiper motor, the linkage is hidden beneath a panel at the back of the hood and below the windshield.
The wipers that clear away moisture on your windshield play an essential role in promoting visibility when you are driving in inclement weather. The components that are visible from the outside of your vehicle, namely the wiper arms and blades, are attached to the linkage arms through the cowl panel trim. When you engage the wipers with the switch inside your vehicle, the wiper motor moves the linkage, which, in turn, moves the wiper arms and blades across your windshield.
How do I know if my vehicle needs the windshield wiper linkage replaced?
If you have a problem with the windshield wipers, a fuse, relay, motor, or switch could be the culprit. So could the wiper arms, blades, or linkage that ties them to the wiper motor. If the linkage is damaged or otherwise broken, you might notice that the wipers do not move smoothly when they are engaged. Or they might not move at all. Or only one side works while the other does not. Sometimes, you might hear the wiper motor moving but without any effect on the wipers. You might also hear a clicking or grinding sound coming from below the windshield. If the linkage is seized, you might also notice an electrical smell coming from the wiper motor trying to move, and the fuse that is responsible for the wipers might blow repeatedly.
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How is a a Windshield Wiper Linkage Replacement done?
Replacement of the windshield wiper linkage is more involved than merely replacing the wiper blades or arms. On some vehicles, the linkage is integrated into the wiper motor assembly, and both must be replaced together. To replace the linkage, a technician will likely do the following:
Disconnect the negative battery terminal
Remove the wiper arms and blades
Unfasten and remove the windshield cowl panel to access the wiper motor and linkage
Disconnect any electrical connections to the wiper motor
Detach the linkage from the motor
Unfasten the wiper motor from its mounts (where applicable)
Remove the wiper motor and install the new one (if integrated with the linkage)
Reattach the linkage and electrical connector
Reinstall windshield cowl panel and wiper arms
Verify the repair by testing the windshield wipers
Other questions customers ask
How long does the windshield wiper linkage last?
The linkage that ties your wiper arms and blades to the wiper motor and synchronizes their movement should last the lifetime of your vehicle. Sometimes they fail due to excessive corrosion. They can also fail if they are subject to undue stress, as might happen if they are forced to move a considerable amount of snow or are frozen in place in the cold.
Why aren't my windshield wipers moving?
If your windshield wipers refuse to move, the problem could stem from a blown fuse, failed wiper motor, bad switch, or damaged wiper linkage. On occasion, the connection between the linkage and the wiper arms can become worn or corroded. When this happens, the connection can strip out and allow the linkage to move independently of the wiper arms and blades.
Can you drive without windshield wipers?
Driving without working windshield wipers is a risky move in clear weather, and a dangerous - and likely illegal - one in inclement weather. Most states have laws requiring street-legal vehicles to be equipped with working windshield wipers for this reason.
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What parts are related to a Windshield Wiper Linkage Replacement?
What are some other common services related to a Windshield Wiper Linkage Replacement?
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