Safelite AutoGlass Poll Finds Most Drivers Don't Replace Windshield Wipers Frequently Enough


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COLUMBUS, Ohio, April 8, 2013; In honor of April Car Care Month, Safelite AutoGlass®, the nation's largest provider of vehicle glass repair and replacement services, polled its customers on routine vehicle care habits and found that most drivers follow experts' advice with the exception of windshield wipers.

Safelite AutoGlass recommends drivers replace windshield wipers every six months or 6,000 miles. The survey found 65 percent or respondents replace them only once a year while 23 percent go every two to three years.

Meanwhile, most vehicle manufacturers recommend rotating tires every 5,000 to 10,000 miles. The majority (61 percent) of respondents followed those guidelines and 30 percent do it even more frequently.

Finally, the majority of respondents (55 percent) follow experts' advice to check their tail lights at least once a month, but the next largest segment (29 percent) only check them when they are told one is out.

"At Safelite AutoGlass, we care about the safety of those on the road. That's why with every windshield repair or replacement, the labor of installing new wiper blades is free," said Tom Feeney, Safelite AutoGlass president and CEO. "What many don't realize is that windshield wipers are critical to safety, as many of the most important driving decisions are based on a clear, unobstructed view."

Drivers can extend the life of windshield wipers by inspecting them regularly – looking for cracked, torn or contaminated blades – and by cleaning the wiper blades frequently with non-abrasive glass cleaner or windshield washer solvent with a soft cloth or a cotton swab.

About Safelite AutoGlass®

Safelite AutoGlass, founded in 1947, is the nation's leading provider of vehicle glass repair and replacement services, providing mobile service to more than 95 percent of the U.S. population in all 50 states. The Columbus, Ohio-based company employs nearly 10,000 people across the United States and served more than 4.1 million customers last year. For more information, visit www.safelite.com.

Windshield Wipers Maintenance Hints From Safelite

In order to maintain your safety, it is important to replace your windshield wipers regularly. Much like auto glass helps support the structural integrity of your vehicle, each part of your vehicle, including windshield wipers, has its own key duties.

Experts recommend replacing your wiper blades every six months to 6,000 miles.

How to maintain your windshield wipers

Windshield wipers are critical to your safety. It's important to have windshield wiper blades replaced every six months, as many of the most important driving decisions are based on a clear, unobstructed view. By following the three steps below, you may extend the life of your windshield wipers.

1. Inspect your windshield wipers regularly

Here's what you should look for when inspecting your windshield wipers:

  • Cracked rubber - Splits and slashes in the rubber blades are evidence of wear
  • Contaminated rubber - Road film or chemicals can adhere to the rubber refill surface, causing smears across the glass
  • Torn rubber - Element pulls away from its support structure, creating a "slapping" sound when in use.
  • Improperly installed refill - A windshield wiper refill that is too short or not properly installed in the blade support structure may cause windshield scratches
  • Park set rubber - Direct sunlight and extreme temperature change can cause the rubber blade to harden and lose flexibility, resulting in an uneven wiper sweep
  • Damage superstructure - Ice scrapers and car wash equipment can bend wiper arms, blades or refills and make wipers less effective
  • Abrasion-worn rubber - Winter conditions or worn rubber elements can cause ragged edges and reduce wiper sweep coverage

2. Clean your wiper blades frequently

To clean your windshield wipers, apply non-abrasive glass cleaner or windshield washer solvent with a soft cloth or a cotton swab. Please consult your owner's manual to see if the manufacturer recommends a specific cleaning solution for wipers.

3. Remove ice and snow

Be sure to thoroughly clean ice and snow from your windshield and blades before operating your wipers. Heavy ice and snow can damage your blades or cause the windshield wipers to shut off in the event of an overload. If this happens, please consult your owner's manual and follow the manufacturer's suggestions.

Safelite AutoGlass® now makes it easy to replace blades. We offer quality Hydrogard® windshield wipers or Bosch® Evolution flat blades, for an additional cost, when we repair or replace your glass. We’ll even install them free of charge. Value, convenience and safety - just what you would expect from America's auto glass experts.

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