How to Clear Clogged Windshield Washers


It is inevitable that you discover the windshield washers are clogged when you need them most. If a nozzle or the line is clogged, you get a weak spray of cleaner or none at all, which only adds to your angst. Take a few minutes and get rid of the clog before you're caught on the road again with a smeared windshield and no washers.

Things You'll Need

  • Sewing needle
  • Compressed air
  • Check the amount of windshield washer fluid in the reservoir. Locate the vehicle's reservoir and use products recommended by your car's manufacturer to fill it.

  • Turn on the vehicle ignition. Test the windshield washer to pinpoint the clog. Examine the washer fluid system to see whether it's in one nozzle or in the line. Make sure excess car wax is not blocking the nozzle opening. Insert a sewing needle into the opening of the nozzle a few times to dislodge a clog. Test the windshield washers.

  • Unclog a blocked nozzle or lines with a can of compressed air. Hold the can upright with the directional tube against the nozzle to force air into it. Listen for the air to bubble in the fluid in the reservoir. Remove the tube from the lower portion of the nozzle. Blow air through the tube into the reservoir to remove any debris in the line. Reconnect the tube to the nozzle. Try the washers again.

  • Remove the clogged nozzle and disconnect the line. Snap the new nozzle into place and reconnect the line.

Tips & Warnings

  • If the blast of air disconnects the feed hose from the nozzle. Locate the retaining buttons under the hood insulation to reconnect the hose.
  • If you live in a cold climate, the clog may be ice. Use a no-freeze washer solution to prevent the reservoir and lines from freezing.
  • Visit the dealership or an auto parts store to obtain the correct replacement part.
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