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The Reason Why Vehicle Wiper Blades Are Different Lengths

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Car windshield wipers different lengths

There’s a lot of DIY work you can do for your car to keep it running smoothly as the seasons change, including replacing the windshield wiper blades twice a year. If you’ve purchased new blades for your car, you’ve no doubt noticed that each of the wipers are different lengths. Thus, you have to buy two different sizes from the auto parts store. Why is this? Most car parts are uniform throughout a model, such as tire size, so why are wiper blades different lengths?

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Why your car’s wiper blades are different lengths and how that improves visibility

RainEater Elements All Seasons Wiper Blade Review test (1)Unlike the single wiper that cleans your car’s rear window that is positioned at the center of the glass, the front wipers arms are not centered on the windshield. You’ll notice that the driver’s-side wiper is actually near the side-edge of the windshield. When that wiper arm moves, it only travels approximately 90 degrees — perpendicular to its original starting point — before returning to its original position. That’s important.

The differing lengths of windshield wiper blades pertain to the position of the wiper arms. If the wipers were equal sizes and positioned centrally on the windshield, there would be a lot of unnecessary overlap between the two wipers’ paths while the top-center and top-corners of the windshield would be neglected.

By altering the position and path of the wipers, vehicle designers have identified the optimal layout to clear the most area — particularly on the driver’s side. Thus, the sizes of the wipers have to vary to coincide with those positions.

So, the next time you buy new wipers for your car, you’ll know why you need to purchase two different items instead of an identical set.

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Source: Your Mechanic