Windshield Wipers


The windshield wiper system of the motor home is comprised of an electric motor, linkage, wiper arms and a dash switch, which in some cases may also be located on the Smart Wheel.

Do not use the wipers to clear ice from the windshield during freezing conditions. Attempting to use the wiper system as an ice scraper can over stress and damage the wiper linkage and motor. Lubricate the wiper arm linkage that attaches the wipers to the wiper motor with a white spray lube yearly. You can access the wiper arm linkage through the front engine cover.

Clean the wiper blades at least one time per month using a damp rag. As you clean, inspect the system. If the rubber is warped, brittle, cracked or coated with debris, it is time to replace the windshield wipers. Examine the wiper arm to assure it is straight and has adequate spring tension. Damage to the assembly is also an indicator that it is time to replace the windshield wipers. Streaking and chattering when the system is in operation are other signs indicating that the windshield wiper blades are at the end of their service life.

If the windshield wipers fail to operate, check the fuse, which is generally located in the front electrical bay. Some model motor homes have more than one fuse to operate the wiper system. If all wiper fuses are good and the wipers still fail to operate, or only operate in a certain mode, the problem may lie at the switch. In some cases the problem may be at the wiper motor itself and in that instance it will be necessary to replace the wiper motor, which is located behind the front fiberglass cap.

It is recommended that you replace the windshield wipers once per year, or more often as necessary. Wiper blade assemblies may differ between windshield models. For detailed instructions on how to change your wiper blade assembly, and where you can obtain replacement windshield wipers, contact your RV dealer or Monaco Technical Support. Be sure to have the model and year of your motor home on hand, as well as the six-figure vehicle identification number.

When removing a wiper arm is necessary, use caution to reduce contact between the metal and the window glass that may result in scratching. Pull the assembly away from the windshield and prop in the open position. During removal, keep one hand on the wiper arm to hold the wiper in place while using the other hand to slide the wiper off. If you must turn away from the windshield while performing this procedure, carefully position the wiper blade back against the windshield to prevent the bare metal from accidentally snapping down against the glass.

During storage, or when parked at a campground for extended periods of time, use a ‘wiper boot’ to help protect the wipers against extreme weather. Be sure and remove the boot prior to driving down the road.

Hazardous driving conditions can arise when bugs, dirt and other debris builds up on the windshield to decrease visibility. Refill the windshield washer reservoir as needed. Check the reservoir levels each time you perform a fluid inspection in the engine, or more often, depending on how much you use the windshield wash system. The reservoir is generally located up in the front engine compartment or in the front roadside cargo bay and may be identified by a label on the bottle, or icons of a wiper blade on the cap.

Fill the reservoir with an approved windshield cleaning solution. Use of products other than those specifically designed for use in the windshield washer reservoir may clog the tubes and cause the system to malfunction. Do not put only water into the wash reservoir during cold weather conditions.

Water lacks the anti-freeze properties necessary to prevent freezing. After filling the reservoir, securely replace the cap. If the system has been allowed to run low or completely empty of washer fluid it may take a couple of attempts to fill the tubes. In some instances the spray nozzle may become blocked and prevent fluid from coming out. Carefully use a straight pin to clear debris from the nozzle.

© Barry Brideau 2003-2018