Vehicle: Car: Windshield Wiper
Wiper Saver   (+20, -1)  [vote for, against]
Keep wipers fresh and streak free

I came up with this several years ago. I hate streaks on my windshiled from worn wipers. So, I studied the problem. Even brand new wipers will begin to leave streaks after a short time. I found out the first culprit is sun...heat. The rubber tends to dry out and crack and deform as the glass gets hot and the pressure of the wipers on the glass deforms them. The second most damaging element is ice. Even tiny bits of frost will cause the fine edge of the wipers to adhere to the glass. When you turn on the wiper, some of the fine edge is ripped off leaving gaps for streaks. Third is sandy grit. The wipers form a small dam against the glass. Dirt and sand accumulate and when you turn on the wiper (usually because of wet weather) this dirt and sand turns to sticky mud and will grind not only the wiper, but the glass as well, eventually ruining the windshield. Here is my solution. I attached little blocks of wood to my wiper arms with split key rings. When the wipers are at rest, these blocks are stood up between the wiper arm and the glass, lifting the wiper rubber a quarter inch off the glass. When I turn on the wipers, the blocks flip out of the way and drop the wiper onto the glass. No ice, no deformation from heat, no grit to scratch my windshield. When the rain has stopped, and I park, I take a second or two and reposition the little blocks. I can use the same set of wipers, streak free, for over two years. This device is very inexpensive and actually fun to make. My blocks are 3/8" x 3/8" x 1-1/4" (exact size will vary for each model of car)...drilled a small hole in one end for the split ring and then slipped the ring over my wiper arm with the wiper removed...put the wiper back on and all ready for streak-free rainy weather driving.

Addenda post questions: For Ling; No, the little block of wood tends to just drift to the bottom of the wiper arm and swings harmlessly our of the way.

For DrCurry; The patent attorney I approached was very disinterested because wiper lifters have been on the market for decades. This is just an easy home concoted way of making one. "Like trying to patent a wooden, home built wheel barrow" is what he told me. I did copywright one design of it...but that was years ago.
-- Blisterbob, Sep 13 2005

Wiper Lifter Wiper_20Lifter
The quickie version. [phoenix, Sep 14 2005]

Very nicely done.
-- skinflaps, Sep 13 2005

Nice simple solution. And you've built it.
-- wagster, Sep 13 2005

Similar in concept to the wiper setup on some new vehicles. A small plastic ramp lifts the wiper arm from the surface as it returns to the rest position.

Something like this could be made and glued to the cowl vent of just about any car.

As [wagster] said, nice simple solution. [+]
-- Freefall, Sep 13 2005

Nice +.
-- Susan, Sep 13 2005

What, an idea on the halfbakery that actually works? We can't have any of that!

Nice and welcome, Bob. (WTAGIPBAN)
-- krelnik, Sep 13 2005

Cool. Designed, tested, proved. Can't help feeling that a little ramp glued onto the windscreen might have the edge, but can't argue with evidence from the field! Bun.
-- moomintroll, Sep 13 2005

Wauw, he Is new. welcome, welcome, welcome.
-- Susan, Sep 13 2005

I think a combination of this and [waugsqueke]s Wiper Lifter (link) would be ideal.
-- phoenix, Sep 14 2005

+ Do you have a photo? If I understand correctly, EINSTEINAMITE!

(I coined that exclamation, in case it catches on).
-- Zimmy, Sep 14 2005

Smart. A lot less complicated than roll down wiper blades, and retrofittable.
-- reensure, Sep 14 2005

I might try this, but I want to check one thing: does the little piece of wood get dragged along the glass, behind the wiper?
Perhaps a small (weak) spring could lift the wood out of the way?
-- Ling, Sep 14 2005

That's really neat! But the real question is whether my wife will let me put little blocks of wood on the precious Mercedes.

I hope you patented this thing?
-- DrCurry, Sep 14 2005

You can try latex sponge wedges that they sell at beauty salon supply stores for use in pedicures. Nail salons use them to keep customer's toes separated. Weighing maybe a gram each, they offer little risk of damage, they're tapered and they're cheap, cheap.
-- bristolz, Sep 14 2005

I like it! Made of wood! So good! Also the wiper theory preface is very nice.
-- bungston, Oct 26 2005

I have been pondering these blocks. I do not want to have to place them when I park. Plus when I get my McLaren F1 going up over 160 mph, the blocks rattle around alarmingly.

I propose that instead of loose blocks, one could install two small slick plastic wedges at the lowest point of the windshield. The wedges would act as a ramp, and when the wipers came to rest, the body of the wiper would ride up the ramp, lifting the blade off the windshield.
-- bungston, Oct 26 2005

It's yet patentable in the US and for another 10.5 months or so. International patents are out, though.
-- bristolz, Oct 26 2005

The problem with ramps is that they'll lift the wipers on every cycle, while the wipers are running. This might lead to excessive wear or load on the motors.
-- notexactly, May 19 2018

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