We all gotta admit that no matter how simple or tiny some tools seem like, their impacts are much bigger and make our life easier; a windshield wiper is one of them. Everyone knows that the wipers are vital to keep the windscreen clean and clear, but not many know what makes them work, how they work.
Just below the base of your windshield, there is a linkage known as wiper transmission located. This is what makes the wiper blades go back and forth and sometimes up and down. Not only these sequenced the movement but also how the wiper transmission work is fascinating.
What is Windshield Wiper Transmission | Simplified Details
It’s a common misconception that the wiper blades are directly connected to the motor. Windshield wiper transmission or linkage works as the middleman between these two. When you turn on the wiper switch, it sends a signal to the control module so that the wiper relay can send power to the motor.
The motor has little arms connected to the linkage, and it helps to move the linkage. This articulation that is attached to the wiper blades then helps the wiper blades to rotate and wipe the windshield from dirt and rains. Unlike the wiper, the linkage is hidden under the vehicle hood to protect from the weather and other elements.
Though the wiper transmission is made super strong that may last longer than your vehicle, it may get damaged because of overuse in frozen and rainy days. But before they stop working totally, they show symptoms of the problems. If you notice early and take a step, you might not need to replace it.
Common Problems with Windshield Wiper Transmission
Wiper transmissions are governed by motors and that’s where most of the troubles get their roots. Although potential clashes are avoided well, a number of unprecedented hurdles appear as time passes.
One of the most common problems is the wiper blades don’t move while operating. It happens when the wiper transmission is broken. But if you don’t hear the sound of the motor running, then the problem is the motor itself. When the linkage is broken, the motor will keep using power but you won’t get any result.
Erratic & Interrupted Rotation
Sometimes the wipers won’t move orderly and they will stop at incorrect positions or clash with each other. In some other cases, you will see the wipers flinch during the operation causing uneven rotation. All of these things happen when the wiper linkage is worn out or the arm and linkage attachment is loose.
Even if the wipers work properly, sometimes you will hear wipers making a grinding noise during operation. It’s not a big deal, as it mainly happens when the wiper blade arm is attached too tightly to the linkage.
This pressure causes the wiper motor to make grind noise and the motor dies sooner. If you adjust the arm tension properly this problem will not happen.
Importance of Windshield Wiper Transmission
You may wonder, why don’t we just attach the wiper with the motor and why this transmission is a requirement. Try to imagine how the wiper blades would work without the linkage. There lies the answer.
Very few vehicles come with only one big wiper that can clean all the dirt. Most of the cars, trucks, and other vehicles feature a pair of wiper blades or even more depending on the size of the windscreen. So, if there was no linkage, we had to have more motors to operate the wipers individually, simply wasting power.
Besides, it would be impossible to synchronize the rotation of all the wipers when they are separated and thus, they would clash. For all these problems, windshield wiper transmission is the only simplest solution, and hence the importance.
Although the wiper system is a small part of your vehicle, and the wiper transmission is an even smaller segment, the impact of the linkage is much bigger. If the wiper transmission is in a good state, so will the visibility of your car, no matter how bad the weather is or how much dirt is there.
So, keeping an eye on the wiper transmission is important to avoid more work afterward. And do good maintenance so that the linkage won’t get damaged easily.