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Broken windshield wipers?

MarcG

Active Member
Oct 29, 2014
3,963
5,645
San Francisco
When I got to the ski resort this morning, I placed my windshield wipers in service mode so I could raise the riper arms.
However when tried to raise them they wouldn't budge past a couple of inches off the windshield, so I exercised a little more force.

In doing so, I heard a loud metallic pop and thought I broke something.
However it seems that I am left with a spring and a hook in my hands, so I'm hoping it's not broken.

Has as anyone seen this before, and if so, do you have any tips on how to reattach it?
 

ohaq

Model S #P9,326
Apr 20, 2012
243
6
Michigan
Once I had heavy slush, turning on the wipers broke the thing (metalic/aluminum) where it rotates. Service replaced it. Not sure if yours might be the same.

Update: This is what was listed on the Tesla invoice
Cause: Wiper transmission frame broken at far left body mounting tab
Correction: Wiper Motor Assembly: I replaced wiper motor and transmission assembly.
 
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mknox

Well-Known Member
Aug 7, 2012
10,103
1,894
Toronto, ON
When I got to the ski resort this morning, I placed my windshield wipers in service mode so I could raise the riper arms.
However when tried to raise them they wouldn't budge past a couple of inches off the windshield, so I exercised a little more force.

The Model S wipers can only be raised an inch or two off of the glass. They cannot be "stood up" like on many other cars.
 

MarcG

Active Member
Oct 29, 2014
3,963
5,645
San Francisco
Thank you all for the helpful responses.

I spoke to Tesla tech support and they confirmed that nothing was broken, it was just the hook and spring that came apart.
To reattach them the wiper arm needed to be removed, and even then the spring was super tight so a few tools were required.

Thanks again everyone!
 
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CHG-ON

Still in love after all these miles
Jun 24, 2014
3,079
648
Santa Cruz Mountains, USA
This just kills me. I love my car, but why can't they use a wiper design that has been around forever and is proven to work. The inability to raise the wipers makes it really hard to clean the blades well. And...apparently it causes problems like this! Along with the Frunk, another item to not touch.

But yes, I still love my girl! Time for counseling.
 
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fawu

Member
Sep 14, 2013
56
73
Snoqualmie, WA
The same happened to me (or better, I did the same to me) while on a ski vacation in the middle of the Rockies far far away from any Service Center. I removed the wiper arm and tried to get the spring back on - which was hopeless...the spring is way too strong.

I put some stronger rubber band in instead, but my 500 mile return trip was still miserable. Realized that working wipers in winter weather are quite essential.
My Service Center fixed it at no cost after my return, but I've learned my lesson.
 

David.85D

Active Member
Oct 29, 2016
1,547
1,304
USA
Fixed Mine! Just needed a somewhat old fashioned $12 tool - a brake spring plier used to attach springs on drum brakes.
There is even a little hole already in a convenient place to catch the pointy end of the tool. The hook end fits perfectly onto the spring.

It was a bit of grunt. Definitely use safety glasses and heavy gloves in case the spring flies off (and work away from your Tesla...)
I'm not the strongest person. If you have been to the gym in the last year, you ought to be able to do this.

I'm convinced if the double ended hook was bent around a little further then none of us would have this problem. The wiper arm has a stop to limit travel, but it barely seems to engage - if that was a little longer, I think that also would also prevent this problem.


FullSizeRender-6.jpg FullSizeRender-5.jpg
 
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Fixed Mine! Just needed a somewhat old fashioned $12 tool - a brake spring plier used to attach springs on drum brakes.
There is even a little hole already in a convenient place to catch the pointy end of the tool. The hook end fits perfectly onto the spring.

It was a bit of grunt. Definitely use safety glasses and heavy gloves in case the spring flies off (and work away from your Tesla...)
I'm not the strongest person. If you have been to the gym in the last year, you ought to be able to do this.

I'm convinced if the double ended hook was bent around a little further then none of us would have this problem. The wiper arm has a stop to limit travel, but it barely seems to engage - if that was a little longer, I think that also would also prevent this problem.


View attachment 218853 View attachment 218854

Either your pliers are longer than mine, or I need to go to the gym... Even with the above tool, I can't quiet get the spring on. I'm coming up less than 1mm short.
 
Happy to do it if you are near Maryland. Or mail me the parts if you want. If nothing else, it can be a spare...

I put the arm on the floor, stood over it, and did a big grunt and got it to slip into place. That's a very tough spring!

Saved me $80, so I'm happy... I've been driving around with one wiper arm on the car because I was on my way to Jacksonville when I bought new wiper blades and broke the passenger side arm.
 

techMology

Member
Aug 3, 2013
311
56
Toronto
EF0E8738-8135-41AF-A48C-79FF6554E4F3.jpeg EF0E8738-8135-41AF-A48C-79FF6554E4F3.jpeg 317EF959-06C5-4150-9742-34BFC8EE6921.jpeg For those wondering, you can do this without any special tools. It’s hard, though, as others have noted.

My 67 year old father did it using a screwdriver as a lever to expand the spring. Took him a few tries. Harder than that was getting the windshield wiper arm off the bolt. It was ceased on there pretty bad after 4+ years and there isn’t a lot of places to get leverage (especially on the driver side). A screwdriver also saved the day here.
 

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scottm

Legacy account
Jun 13, 2014
3,070
2,349
Canada
Great! The easy way to get the wiper arm off is a “wiper arm puller” which is $12 for the cheap import tool from amazon. Wasn’t sure when I bought it, but have used mine on 3 cars now...

Very sane to use a puller. It's tempting to use a pry tool to get the wiper off its drive mount, but there's a big piece of glass nearby that would be a shame to catch the side of ... and crack it.

I was able to get the arms off with a lot of jiggling motion, grasping the arm as the lever. After a minute it wiggled off the mount.
 

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