How to clean windshield wiper blades (with vinegar or alcohol)

If your windshield wipers are leaving streaks or don’t seem to be wiping your windshield as effectively as they used to, it might be time for a cleaning. You may wonder about how to clean windshield wiper blades. Wait, we will cover it here.

Wiper blades are one of the most important parts of your car, and keeping them clean is crucial to maintaining clear visibility while driving. But over time, your car’s windshield wipers can get clogged with all sorts of things: bugs, dirt, debris, and even ice. It can impede your wipers’ performance and shorten their lifespan.

Fortunately, cleaning your wiper blades is a relatively simple process that requires very little time and a few things you might have lying around your house. Yet many people don’t know how to get this simple task done by themself. For them, here is a step-by-step guide on how to clean wiper blades.

Ways to clean wiper blades with vinegar or alcohol

What supplies do you need for cleaning wiper blades?

Windshield wipers are made of rubber, susceptible to drying out, cracking, and tearing. Over time, the rubber will degrade and will no longer be as effective at clearing your windshield. That’s why it’s important to clean your wipers regularly. There are several ways of doing it. Here, we will describe the methods for cleaning wiper blades using rubbing alcohol or vinegar.

Here is a list of supplies you will need before you get started with cleaning a wiper blade:

  • Vinegar or Rubbing alcohol
  • Soapy Water
  • Paper towels or rags

Steps to clean windshield wiper blades

  • Step 1: Lift your wipers off the windshield. Most wipers are attached with a small lever or tab. Make sure the wiper blades are locked on for a comfortable cleanup. 
  • Step 2: Make a mixture of soapy water with vinegar to clean your wiper blades. You can use only soapy water to clean your wiper blades, but using it together with vinegar will get you a better result. How much vinegar and soap you’ll need to mix will depend on how dirty your wipers are. If they’re just a little dirty, you can mix 1 part vinegar with 4 parts soap. If they’re quite filthy, you might need to use a 1:1 ratio of vinegar to soap.
  • Step 3: Simply soak the clean cloth in soapy water to clean your wiper blades. Now wipe down the blades. Be sure to clean both sides of the blades and pay special attention to the areas where the blade meets the arm.
  • Step 4: Once you’ve cleaned the blades, rinse them with water and dry them with a clean cloth. Now, apply a small amount of rubbing alcohol to the blades. This will help prevent streaking in the future and remove any soap residue that your wiper blade might have.

Should you use rubbing alcohol to clean wiper blades?

Rubbing alcohol is an excellent choice for cleaning wiper blades because it’s a strong solvent that will quickly break down any build-up on the blades. In addition, rubbing alcohol evaporates quickly, so there’s no need to worry about damaging your wiper blades or leaving behind any residue.

You can use the rubbing alcohol together with soapy water. But you can also use it after you have cleaned the wiper blades to give it a finishing rub.

Is rubbing alcohol safe to use on wiper blades?

There are a few things to keep in mind when using rubbing alcohol to clean your wiper blades. First, make sure you’re using isopropyl alcohol and not methyl alcohol. Methyl alcohol can damage your wiper blades. Second, only use a small amount of alcohol. You don’t want to soak your wiper blades in rubbing alcohol. A little goes a long way.

So, does cleaning your wiper blades with rubbing alcohol have any adverse effects? No, not if you’re using isopropyl alcohol and only apply a small amount. Cleaning your wiper blades with rubbing alcohol can help to extend their life.

Can you clean wiper blades with wd40?

WD-40 is a multi-purpose lubricant that can be used for various things, including cleaning your windshield wipers.

So, does cleaning your windshield wipers with WD-40 have any adverse effects?

For the most part, no. WD-40 is safe to use on your windshield wipers and will not damage them. It can actually help to prolong the life of your wipers by keeping them clean and free of debris.

However, make sure to clean the blades thoroughly before applying WD-40. Otherwise, the WD-40 may just spread the dirt and debris rather than clean it off.

Also, check whether there is any excess WD-40 after cleaning the blades and wipe them off. If WD-40 is left on the blades, it can attract more dirt and debris, eventually leading to clogging.

Should you use white spirit on the wiper blades?

Some people swear by white spirit, but is this the best way to clean your wipers? Let’s look at the pros and cons of using white spirit on your windshield wipers.


  • White spirit is a strong solvent that can remove stubborn dirt and grime from your wipers.
  • It’s relatively cheap and easy to find.


  • It can damage some types of rubber.

So, should you use white spirit on your windshield wipers? It depends. If your wipers are dirty and you’re careful when using them, the white spirit can be an effective way to clean them. However, if you’re not careful, you could damage your wipers.

But whatever you do, make sure it doesn’t get in contact with your car’s paint!

How often should you clean your wiper blades?

You should clean your wiper blades at least once a month!

That may seem like a lot, but consider how often you use your wipers. They’re working overtime to keep your windshield clear of snow and ice in the winter. In the spring, they’re busy wiping away all the pollen and dust in the air. And in the summer, they’re constantly fighting the sun’s glare.

So, to keep your wipers in top condition, give them a good cleaning once a month. Otherwise, the performance of the wiper blades will decrease fast and soon you’ll need to remove and replace the wiper blades.

How to keep wiper blades clean?

Here are a few tips for keeping your wiper blades clean:

1. Use a soft cloth to wipe down the blades once in a while. It will remove any dirt or debris that has accumulated on the blades.

2. Periodically clean the blades with soapy water. It will help remove any built-up grime or residue.

3. Inspect the blades regularly for wear and tear. If the blades are starting to show signs of wear, replace them with new ones.

4. If you live in an area with a lot of snow and ice, consider investing in winter wiper blades. These blades are designed to withstand the elements and help keep your windshield clear all winter long.

Final Words

As you can see, cleaning your wiper blades is quite a simple thing, but it can save you a lot of hassle afterward. It takes so little time and costs very little as you can clean it out with household items. It will make it more difficult to see while driving in bad weather, but it can also be dangerous. So, be sure to clean your wiper blades at least once a month and more often if you live in an area with a lot of dust or pollen. It’s also good to regularly inspect your wipers for any damage. If you notice any cracks or tears, replace your wipers as soon as possible.


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