Tuesday, November 28, 2006

Windshield Wipers


Well, this week we are finally getting a little snow here in the valley. As usual, the news spent a few days sensationalizing yesterday's approaching storm, which was slated to show up at the evening rush hour. The storm didn't prove to be much; just an inch or so of snow (a couple of feet in the mountains), and other than an icy morning commute it caused little problem. All the impending doom did remind me of one of those important things on my "I need to get around to it" list... my lousy windshield wipers. So who is actually good about replacing their wipers as recommended?.... twice a year.. ha! Living in in Utah we don't get much rain, so it is easy to ignore how bad your wipers are. That is, until the first winter storm.

A few years ago my brother Jeff came out to ski, and was so appalled by windshield wipers he made me stop at the first store we could find, buy new ones, and he replaced them for me in the store parking lot. The following Christmas he sent new wipers as a joke. I thought they were a great gift, and now when he asks what I want for Christmas I tell him wiper blades, because with out his gentle reminder I am bound to neglect my wiper maintenance duties.

So last night, in the middle of the "big" storm, I realized that I really needed to do something about my more than 2 year old windshield wipers. Darn my brother, he didn't send me wipers last Christmas so I had to go the store for refills. Of course when I got out to the car I realized refills wouldn't work, that I need to replace the whole shebang. So back in the store I went to exchange them for complete replacement blades. Doesn't it seem wasteful to have to throw the whole assembly away when you really just need a new rubber blade?

In the back of my mind I had this small memory that replacing the wipers was a pain in the rear. Not a faulty memory at all. I decided, even though it was snowing a little, to change them in the parking lot, because the lighting was better then in my driveway, and more replacements were in the store if needed. I started with the passenger side, figuring if I screwed up I could still see out the driver side. I guess you're supposed to be a rocket scientist to change those puppies out. It took forever to figure out how to get the old one off, a little less time to get the new one on. The replacement was aided by that "wonderfully informative" 1 inch by 1 inch instructional picture (see picture above!). Thinking I had it all figured out I went around to tackle the driver side. The problem being the drivers side wiper faces the middle of the car, and my car (a Toyota highlander) is tall, and I am, well, short. So I'm stretching over the car, trying to disassemble and reassemble the wiper from the opposite orientation, thinking it should be easy because I should have learned something from the passenger side. Well It took me twice as long to replace that wiper. I guess I'm not a rocket scientist. My fingers were frozen but at least I can finally see out my windows. My brother will be proud. And if I get new wiper blades for Christmas, maybe next time will be sooner than two years from now.

1 comment:

ellen said...

Oh, Linda, I just read your entry to my husband who has gone through the same ordeal many, many times. You didn't mention swearing like a sailor - he claims that helps. Not sure the neighbors would agree, however.