Saturday, March 29, 2014

RAV4 Rear Window Wiper Blade Replacement

Seems like the two over-whelming comments to this question are:
  1. it is so expensive
  2. it is impossible to find the blades

Well, since my rear blade was 5 years old (and of course the wiper was totally useless), I figured I'd tackle this issue.  So first, expense!

I quickly went onto eBay and searched for a supplier and quickly found a supplier from China that offered the blade and holder set for less than $6, including postage:

So myth 1 shattered ... $6 is not expensive.
(NOTE:  I have no business interests with this person so I'm not promoting him/them)

Next ... impossible to find blades.  Well, maybe ... guess it depends on how you define "impossible".  Yes, you won't find direct replacements at Wal-Mart, but I figured "how hard can this be?".  So I bought (at Wal-Mart) the Rain-X Expert Fit (conventional) wiper assembly, part number C-13-1, which is a 13" blade (the Rav4 uses a 12" blade).

Took the package home and examined it.  Found that of the 4 sets of fingers holding the rubber element, 3 were lose fits while 1 was a tight fit and holding it in place.  So I used a small flat tip screw driver to pry open the 1 set of tight fingers on the end of the rubber element and slide the blade "refill" out of the holder.  Then, with a little gentle pressure on the original assembly from the RAV, the blade comes right out of the holder.  

So now, how to put a 13" blade into a 12"holder ??!!

Well, I held the two blades up and compared.  Remember where the Rain-X holder fingers were tight and holding the blade in?  Well, that end is a little fatter for the tight finger hold ... so you use a Dremel drill grinder blade and cut 1" off that "fatter" end (use the Dremel for the metal part and a razor on the rubber part).

Once done, your new "refill" will slide into the original RAV4 holder assembly.

So with 5 minutes of extra work, myth 2 is busted.


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