How to Clean a Clogged Windshield Washer Nozzle During Your Auto Detailing Career

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It’s a familiar moment to many drivers when they attempt to clean their windshields but their washer nozzles are unable to deliver enough fluid—or any fluid, for that matter. Often, this problem results in grimy streaks left across the glass. Not only can this be quite frustrating, but it can also be dangerous due to reduced visibility caused by the dirty windshield. Paying attention to the state of windshield washer nozzles is therefore important.

Just like the majority of a car’s components, windshield washer nozzles require regular care to ensure they are working properly. The most frequent reason they might malfunction is because of clogging. Common culprits include daily grime from the road, but also car wax and polish. Cleaning such residue and debris from the nozzles should keep them in top shape. Keep reading to find out the steps you can take to deliver your clients a ready-to-ride vehicle complete with clean windshield washer nozzles!

Visible Nozzle Blockages Can Be Gently Scrubbed or Blown Away

When finishing up a job of professional automotive detailing on a vehicle, always remember to inspect the windshield wiper nozzles to make sure no car wax or other grime is obstructing them. If something is clogging the nozzles, then the blockage is usually visible in the form of some sort of residue covering the tiny jets. To clean them, the first step to take is to grab a small and soft brush, like a toothbrush dipped in warm water. This will help to loosen up any grime in and around the nozzles.

Next, use a soft cloth to wipe it away. You can also choose the alternative method of spraying the nozzles with a concentrated stream of compressed air to clear away bits of visible debris.

Sometimes a Deeper Blockage Requires a More Intrusive Approach

Professionals with auto detailing training know that tougher clogs may require a bigger intervention. Deeper blockages usually need a bit of excavation, which should be approached with the utmost care. To tackle these more serious clogs, you may use a pin or needle to very carefully pull out debris that may be lodged deep within the nozzle. Be sure not to push the pin so far that you won’t be able to remove it. If you can’t reach far enough to clear a blockage, you may also use a wire, but it must be very thin—think the width of a guitar string.

Pros in Auto Detailing Careers Know to Always Test Washer Nozzles After Cleaning Them

After cleaning windshield wiper nozzles on a vehicle, always remember to test them to make sure they’re working properly. This is how you’ll figure out if you might need to try cleaning them out using a needle or wire, or if there might be a blockage somewhere else.

Continuous malfunctioning after a thorough cleaning of the nozzles may be due to a blockage somewhere under the hood. The problem in this case may be in the wiper fluid hoses, check valves (if the car has them), or a faulty wiper fluid pump. If it turns out something under the hood may be preventing a car’s windshield washing system from working properly, then the car should be examined by a mechanic.

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Test the nozzles after cleaning them to make sure they’re working properly

Advise Your Clients to Use the Proper Windshield Washing Solution

Sometimes clogs aren’t caused by dirt and grime from the outside or even malfunctioning components on the inside, but due to issues related to the use of the improper windshield washing fluid. This can cause problems especially in the winter where temperatures can drop really low and washer fluid can congeal or freeze, causing various blockages.

When you’re handing back your clients’ sparkling clean vehicles to them, you may advise them to always use the correct washer fluid to avoid these potential issues. That means checking what fluid the car manufacturer has recommended, and opting for no-freeze solutions in the winter to prevent ice clogs. Overall, taking these precautions and having the nozzles cleaned regularly should save your clients from the frustration of a streaky windshield.

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The correct windshield washer fluid should always be used for best results

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