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January 30, 2009

Wiper Blade Maintenance Tips from Rain-X

Lattitude Rain-X Offers Tips and Information to Help You Outsmart the Elements

Visibility is fundamental to safe driving. Although drivers depend on their vehicles' wiper blades to clear away rain, sleet and snow, many wait to replace them until they need them the most. So remembering to maintain wiper blades regularly can maximize visibility, efficiency and reliability.

Wiper blades deteriorate due to many environmental factors including:

  •     Sun: Ultraviolet light and ozone deterioration
  •     Oil: Car waxes and exhaust hold rubber-deteriorating oil
  •     Airborne debris: Sand, mud and dust carried in the wind
  •     Moisture: Acid rain and salt water (in moist air both near the shore and inland)

Remember, wiper blades should be checked every six months and changed at least once a year. Evaluate both the rubber squeegee and the metal frames to avoid common problems such as streaking, skipping, chattering, wearing and splitting - all offenders of reduced visibility and slowed reaction time while driving.

  • Streaking occurs when the rubber squeegee dries, hardens and cracks. It can also be caused by tree sap, road tar and other foreign substances collected on either the glass or the blade.
  • Skipping occurs when the blade develops a curvature from lack of use (e.g.: left in the 'parked position' for an extended length of time).
  • Wearing occurs with extensive use and is when the rubber edges are rounded instead of squared.
  • Splitting is caused when the sun's ultraviolet rays penetrate the rubber squeegee, causing it to breakdown and separate from the frame.
  • Bent refill vertebra and bent frames cause inconsistent contact with the glass surface, creating streaking or skipping.

Avoid these common problems and extend the life of your wiper blades by following these simple steps:

  • Clean your windshield every time you fill your gas tank.
  • Gently wipe the rubber squeegee with a damp paper towel to remove any loose dirt or oil.
  • Never use your windshield wipers to de-ice your windshield. Instead, either use an ice scraper or use your defroster to melt snow and ice.
  • Pull your wiper blades away from the windshield during winter months to prevent ice build up on the rubber squeegee and to prevent them from sticking to the windshield.

Efficient wiper blades are as important to a vehicle's safe operation as clean oil and good tires. So remember to change your wiper blades at least once a year, to inspect them frequently for wear and tear and to enjoy the view!

 Rain-X® Original Glass Treatment, The Invisible Windshield Wiper, improves wet weather driving visibility by repelling rain and by helping to keep sleet and snow from sticking.

Over the past 30 years, the Rain-X® brand has evolved from a single product to ‘masterbrand’ status. Its strong brand equity provided a platform from which to successfully launch into multiple car care categories including wiper blades, windshield washer fluids, glass cleaners, car washes and waxes.

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