There are plenty of ways you can keep an eye on your car, truck or SUV in between routine maintenance, and one important aspect of at-home care is ensuring your windshield wipers are working well. Wipers that are old, broken or otherwise functioning improperly can lead to reduced visibility, which is especially dangerous during those pesky April showers. Thankfully, it is relatively cheap and easy to replace your old blades. A good rule of thumb is to switch out the current set of blades every six months or so, but you should check them at least once a month to make sure they're in good shape.
If you noticed streaking or ineffective results the last time it rained, it's probably a good idea to take a closer look. Test the wipers out using your car's washer fluid if you're not sure how they're holding up. Even if things appear to be OK, take a closer look. You should examine the blades, which are commonly made of rubber or other soft materials, for signs of wear, tears or other damage. At the same time, make sure the blades are properly attached to the wipers, as they can sometimes come dislodged. If the blades are in decent condition, you might just be able to slip them back into place, but be sure to keep an eye on them. Otherwise, head to an auto parts retailer (mega retailers like Wal-Mart and Target will also have wipers available) and ask for help selecting the right blades for your make and model.
Your car's owner's manual should provide instructions for how to remove the current set of blades and attach new ones. However, if you are having trouble or don't feel comfortable doing this yourself, you can bring your car to the experts at New Jersey Auto Auction's Total Car Care Center. The mechanics will be able to assist you in this process, and while you're there, you might as well have them perform a tune-up if you haven't done so already this spring.