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MASTER THREAD: Auto Wiper functionality, complaints, praise, etc.

They definitely have gone downhill in recent months. Driving in the rain at night with no ambient street lights or oncoming cars, if you wait for the auto wipers to kick in you won’t be able to see anything. Manual mode is mandatory in that situation. Drove for 3 hours last weekend on a very rainy night and the wipers drove me crazy. Manual mode is also annoying b/c to change speed takes 2 actions - button on turn signal stalk to bring up the menu, then pick speed on the screen. Would be nice if the card on the screen persisted so subsequent changes could be made quickly. The whole wiper system is nuts from the camera based “rain sensor” to the control module. How about a real rain sensor like every other car company uses? Too much to ask?


Active Member
Aug 28, 2019
Phoenix, AZ
Caveat: I dwell in Phoenix, where I am more likely to use the wipers to clear away dust than hydric acid.

In the rare occasions where I have driven in levels of rainfall varying from "misty drizzle" to "blattering deluges of torrential squall", my experience with the auto-wipers has been generally quite positive. Many updates ago there was the occasional instance of roughly ten droplets' accumulation per square decimeter causing the wipers to start flapping so madly I thought they might fly off, but at least for my perception and preference, much of the time the wipers will start to actuate just about the moment I start thinking of manually doing so. When rainfall gets to the point of constant rather than intermittent wiping, they tend to err on the side of higher rate than lower for my taste, but if you're going to err one way or the other, that's the safer direction to go.

When rainfall ceases, there are maybe four to eight swipes of a dry windscreen before they stop which is more than I would like but not enough to raise my ire.

I even had one instance a fortnight or so ago wherein I was stopped at a traffic light on a rainless sunny day and the cat autonomously decided it was time to wash the windscreen, which was functionality I was unaware the car even had.

All that said, I do realize that my experiences and preferences are my own, and what is perfectly acceptable to me may be irredeemable garbage to someone else.
Updated my 2021 Model 3 this morning. This afternoon, it started to rain before I left work for my commute home (35 minutes commute). Rain was from a drizzle to a light rain. I had absolutely zero complaints about the auto wipers. They worked exactly like I would have set them myself, even as it was getting darker (Canada so the darkness comes early at this time of the year).

I noticed it right away as I put the car in Drive. The windshield was all wet and it did only a single sweep and went to low intermittent. For the first half of my commute (city trafic), it fluctuated from that mode to high intermittent. Only once in that first part of the commute did go in low continuous sweeps (rain picked up) but that lasted maybe 30 seconds. The second part of my commute is almost all highway and there, it switched to continuous slow sweep. It never went once into high speed. That was a first for me. The slow speed was the perfect speed for the rain level and wetness of the road. Once my speed dropped as I left the highway, it went back to low intermittent sweeps.

I know it was just one ride and hopefully it wasn't just a fluke. Anybody else saw something similar?


Active Member
Mar 12, 2021
I have 2022.42.2 and have not noticed an improvement yet. My complaint is that the auto wipers do not turn on in light rain. Even if the window is very difficult to see out of due to rain covering they just sit there in the off position like everything is just fine. I have no choice but to hit the button frequently or engage manual mode.
I have 2022.42.2 and have not noticed an improvement yet. My complaint is that the auto wipers do not turn on in light rain. Even if the window is very difficult to see out of due to rain covering they just sit there in the off position like everything is just fine. I have no choice but to hit the button frequently or engage manual mode.
Just drove to the cottage in a light snow storm. Highway were wet with melted snow. Cars in front created a mist that the wipers correctly took care off. On less busy two way roads, when going over 70 km/h, the wipers didn't kick in because the snow didn't hit the windshield. At lower speed, they worked correctly to get rid of that snow that melted on the windshield.
Hi I have just bought a 2020 3 series love the car but have issues with wipers didn’t work on auto initially then after software update worked fine, now completely packed up! Anyone had these issues? Also I’m a novice with evs and am getting really bad battery performance- any tips? Know it’s winter etc but any advice would really help thanks
It sounds like you have run into some frustrating issues with your new car! Regarding the wipers, there are a few things you can check before reaching out to your dealer. First, make sure that all of the wiper blades are in good condition and not cracked or worn down. Additionally, check if any dirt or debris has built up on the blades or on the windshield, as that can impede their performance. If all of that looks okay and the wipers still don’t work, it could be an issue with the wiper switch itself or a problem with the wiring. In this case, you may need to have your car serviced by a professional.

As for the battery performance, EV batteries can be affected more severely by cold temperatures. Make sure that you’re charging your car to its full capacity every night and keeping it plugged in whenever possible. You should also try to avoid using high-power features like air conditioning or heated seats while driving as they will drain the battery quickly. Finally, if you’re having continuous issues, it might be worth investing in a battery warmer or blanket to help keep the battery at an optimal temperature during the winter months.

We hope this helps you with your car troubles! Good luck and safe driving!

From Precision Auto Styling

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