What Size Wiper Blade Do I Need

"What size wiper blade do I need?" is an excellent question to ask. There are different size wiper blades for different cars. Some cars may even have different requirements for the blades on the passenger's and driver's side.

You can't simply eyeball your wiper blades and know what size is required. You'll need to know a few things about your car to get it right, starting with the make and model and the year your car was produced.

Choosing the Right Size
It would be great if all midsize cars used the same size wiper blade, but they don't. You might think that a 1997 model uses the same blades as a 1998 model, but there's a good chance you'd be wrong. Car manufacturers make a lot of changes from year to year, even when the make and model are the same. Windshields often come in different widths and lengths, with different curvature lines and styles.

The best way to determine what size wiper blade you need is to consult the Owner's Manual. If your Owner's Manual is missing, remove the existing wiper blade and take it to the store with you. If your wiper blades are missing, , your best bet is to consult the dealer.

Stores that sell wiper blades usually have a handy book that lists blade sizes for every car manufactured in the past 30 years, but it's common for the manual or the page you need to be missing. Make sure you know your car's make, model and year before you head out shopping. If there's anything unusual about your car, such as a sports package or a limited edition design, make a note of that as well. Any mechanic or auto parts store can hook you up with the right windshield wipers if you know the specifics about your car.

Things to Know

  • Not all makes and models of vehicles have identical wipers. Rear wipers are typically smaller. Driver's side blades may be shorter than passenger's side blades. 
  • When you buy a set of blades, they may be different sizes. Be sure to match them up to the right positions on your car.
  • For average cars, wiper blades run about 20" to 22" in length> Some foreign cars can have very small blades.
  • Changing a wiper blade generally means replacing the entire arm, not just the rubberized insert.
  • Using a protective sealant against rain and taking your car to the car wash will prolong the life of your wiper blades.

Once you figure out what size wiper blades you need for your current vehicle, write it down on a notepad and keep it in the glove box. When you go to purchase new blades in a few months, which is about how long a pair of wiper blades will last, you won't have to guess again.

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