How To Choose The Best Windshield Wipers 2018-An Easy Guide

Choosing the right windshield wipers for your vehicle is an important part of being a responsible car owner. Whether you live in hurricane prone Florida, or chilly upstate New York, having a reliable set of windshield wipers could mean the difference between safely getting where you need to go, and being helplessly stuck at home.

We here at FIXD know that buying windshield wipers may not seem like the most exciting part of owning a vehicle, but we are here to help make the process as easy and quick as possible.  We’ve done extensive research into different wiper brands to make sure we are recommending the absolute best quality for your car, your climate, and your budget!

If you want to skip straight down to our windshield wiper brand recommendations based on climate, go ahead and look in the table of contents below to find exactly what you are looking for!

Windshield Wipers: Things to First Consider

There are a lot of things to consider when deciding which windshield wiper is right for your car. There are hundreds of different makes and models of wipers, and sorting through all of them to find the best one for you can feel overwhelming. Be sure that when you begin the process you consider these things first in order to significantly narrow down your search:

  1. Do you even need new wipers?

You are supposed to change out your windshield wipers every six months to a year depending on how they are performing. When you rub your hands along the rubber do you feel some abnormalities? Do your wipers seem to actually be making your visibility worse when you use them? Do they sound like someone screaming when they slide across your windshield? If the answer to any or all of these things is YES, then it is time to invest in some new effective wipers.

  1. Where you live/ your area’s climate

When it comes to buying windshield wipers, the most important thing to consider is the area that you live in, and the weather conditions that are common there. Your windshield wipers need to be able to stand up to the harshest conditions your area experiences, and different wipers work better for different circumstances. In our list of best windshield wipers, we went ahead and separated our recommendations based on climate to make the buying process as quick as possible for you!

  1. Difficulty of attachment

While wipers are generally pretty easy to install, different types of wipers have slightly different levels of attachment difficulty. If you don’t feel fully confident in your DIY abilities, no worries, because we have made a video detailing out the exact steps needed to quickly change out your wipers!

We also want to point out that different cars come with different wiper arms, and this affects which wipers can or can’t be attached to your vehicle. While the J-Hook is the most common attachment style for wipers, most of the wipers we have recommended on this list come with a universal attachment mechanism.

  1. Windshield Wiper Size

It is always important to make sure you know what size wipers your vehicle requires. This depends on the size of your car’s windshield. Often you can consult your car owner’s manual for the correct sizing, or, if over time you’ve misplaced your manual, a simple Google search for your specific vehicle’s windshield wiper size normally does the trick.

  1. Blade Material

Different blades are made from different materials, and some hold up longer and better than others. The most conventional and common material used for wiper blades is rubber. Rubber blades will typically be cheaper than most other materials, but they also tend to have a shorter life span than some of the other options.

Silicone blades are a newer technology that generally tends to be more durable than their rubber predecessors, and generally last longer too. The downside of silicone wipers is that their cost is noticeably higher.

Coated blades are a third option that are gaining popularity quickly. These blades are typically a rubber material, but they are coated in either graphite or Teflon, which means they don’t wear out as quickly as a plain rubber blade might.

The IMPORTANT thing to note is that a particular blade material is not always right for every situation, and our list reflects that. Our recommendations include all 3 types of blade materials, all of which you can be sure will be the best blades for your individual circumstance.

Winter Condition Wipers

Bosch Icon – High Price Option

Pros
-Long lasting
-Easy installation
-Duel rubber lining
-Great curvature to window
-Well distributed pressure
-Resistant to extreme weather
-Extensive compatibility
-Extensive sizing
-Quiet

Cons
-High price

Topping almost every list of reliable windshield wipers for winter conditions is the Bosch Icon. They have a longer lifespan than the average wiper, along with a dual rubber lining (silicone shell with rubber core) that allows the wiper to withstand extreme weather conditions. The unique beam design allows for peak visibility, even when conditions become their roughest.

Although we have placed these wipers in the Winter Conditions category, they could easily be included under the Rainy Conditions section as well due to their extensive durability. We know these windshield wipers are a little pricier than some of our other recommendations, but the Pros attached to this brand far outweigh the Cons, and we should know, because we personally tested them! (link here)

Rain-X Latitude– Moderate Price Option

Pros
-Great hidden framework
-Easy to install
-Extensive compatibility
-Extensive sizing
-Good rubber grip/flexibility
-Quiet

Cons
-Moderate/High price

Rain-X is an awesome brand that consistently puts out reliable and efficient wiper blades. The Rain-X Latitude is no different! These blades are perfect for icy conditions due to their protected internal frame mechanism. By making the framework internal, the wipers prevent any ice or snow buildup that would normally accumulate, giving you a more efficient wiper experience. The wiper’s flexibility and grip is also greatly enhanced by the presence of a graphite coated rubber blade, meaning a better wipe across your windshield and increased visibility. These wipers are reliable, and slightly cheaper than the Bosch Icons, which we recommended earlier in this list.

ANCO Winter Wiper– Low Price Option

Pros
-Low price
-Extensive compatibility
-Extensive sizing
-Easy to install
-Smooth glide across windshield
-Rubber, internal frame mechanism
-Quiet

Cons
-No significant cons

ANCO is constantly brought up on best value windshield wiper lists, and with extremely good reason! These wipers are great for resisting icy conditions, and best of all, they are EXTREMELY affordable. ANCO offers an extensive list of different sizes, meaning you are sure to find the right fit for your vehicle. The internal rubber framework prevents freezing of the joints, and installation is pretty simple for those of you who want something quick and easy. They might not be as fancy as the wipers mentioned above, but for their price and efficiency level, they are a great bargain.

Rainy Condition Wipers

PIAA 95055 Super Silicone– High Price Option

Pros
-Special silicone treated blade
-Long lasting blade
-1-year warranty
-Corrosion resistant
-Low wind related drag
-Smooth glide across windshield
-Quiet

Cons
-Tricky to install
-Bracket wiper, bad for winter months
-High price

The PIAA Super Silicone windshield wipers are known for 2 distinct features: the water-resistant oil they coat your windshield with in order to increase the beading of water, and its higher-than-average cost. While these wipers are more expensive than most other brands, they make up for it with their unique features. The water-resistant oil the silicone wipers are treated with allows for water to bead and fall off your windshield easier, which is great if you live in an area that experiences frequent rainfall. While the bracket structure isn’t the best for winter months, it is good if you live in a particularly rainy climate, which can make windshield wipers susceptible to wind damage and corrosion.

The PIAA Super Silicone wiper is also a fan-favorite for 1 other important reason, which is that it comes with a 1-year warranty, which every car owner is sure to love!

Rain-X Latitude 2-in-1 Water Repellency– Moderate Price Option

Pros
-Water repellent coating
-Quick water beading
-Beam blade
-Good contour to windshield
-Easy installation
-Extensive compatibility
-Extensive Sizing
-Quiet

Cons
-No significant cons

Rain-X offers a variety of windshield wiper options in an effort to best accommodate the needs of its customers, and that includes differing climate features. Our second Rain-X recommendation is the Rain-X Latitude Water Repellency wiper, which sports a water repellent coating on its blades that promotes the beading of surface water, and in turn increased visibility. These wipers have a strong beam structure, meaning that they are great for not only resisting heavy rain, but also snowy or icy conditions.

Also of note, this second recommendation is slightly cheaper than our first Rain-X recommendation.

Pros
-Enclosed in protective case
-Good for both ice and rain
-Independent suspension
-Extensive compatibility
-Extensive sizing
-Smart Flex technology
-Multiple adaptors
-Quiet

Cons
-No significant cons

The Stealth Hybrid windshield wiper from the famous tire company Michelin is great for any car owner that needs a strong but relatively cheap wiper to fiend off large amounts or rainfall. Slightly cheaper than its other Michelin counterpart, the Stealth Ultra, the Stealth Hybrid lies somewhere between a beam and a bracket blade. In fact, with their unique design, a buyer gets many of the benefits of having a beam style blade, but without having to pay the higher price for it. They also distribute pressure evenly throughout the entire wiper, meaning that your windshield gets a better clean with each swipe.

 All-Season Wipers

*Keep in mind that brands mentioned in other sections can also be utilized as all-season brands

 Aero Premium All-Season –Moderate Price Option

Pros
-Internal frame mechanism
-Good contact with windshield
-Extensive sizing
-Teflon-coated rubber blade
-Beam blade
-Good for year-round conditions
-6-month warranty
-Quiet

Cons
-Shorter lifespan than other more durable wipers
-Limited connecting options

The AERO Premium All Season wipers are a dependable brand that are sure to keep your windshield as clean and clear as possible throughout any weather conditions it encounters. Not quite as expensive as the Bosch Icons we recommend way back in our Winter Conditions section, the AERO Premiums use their Teflon-coated rubber blades to make sure that your windshield is as clean and streak-free as possible, while also maintaining good contact with the windshield at all times.

Users have complained that the blades themselves are not as durable as some other brands, and do not come with as many attachment options for fitting purposes. But for a good quality pair of beam blades that are available at a relatively fair price, we at FIXD recommend AERO Premium for drivers who want blades that can stand up to weather conditions no matter what time of the year. Also, fun fact, 2 blades are included when you purchase the AERO Premium All Seasons instead of the conventional 1 blade per package.

Valeo Ultimate 900 Series– Moderate Price Option

Pros
-Steady positioning
-Extensive sizing
-Beam blade
-Good contact with windshield
-Good for high speed drivers
-Quiet
-Lets you know when to change them

Cons
-No significant cons

The Valeo Ultimate 900s are on almost every list of best windshield wipers, and that is because of some pretty cool unique features they boast. They sport an aerodynamic flat structure that helps decrease any wind resistance or drag. This means that even when you are driving fast on the highway, the Valeos will still give your windshield a nice and even clean. They are a beam blade, so they can stand up to snow or rain no matter which season, and they have a special blended rubber that helps slow down any wear or tear that your wipers may accumulate over time.

They Valeos also have a pretty neat feature that lets you know when you need to replace your wipers, which is pretty handy if you are the type of person who doesn’t like to do too much automotive investigating.

*Our Cheap Recommendations*

Michelin High Performance Conventional Wiper– Low Price Option

Pros
-Cheap
-Reliable brand
-Extensive compatibility
-Extensive sizing
-Multiple pressure points

Cons
-Open frame
-Not good for winter weather

If you are in a financial bind, but still need a windshield wiper that is reliable and will get you where you need to go, look no further than the Michelin High Performance Wiper.

These wipers are certainly not claiming to be the best or most durable windshield wipers on the market, but they are good, sturdy, and most importantly, CHEAP! We here at FIXD wanted to provide our readers with a wiper that won’t by any means break the bank, but that we can also promise will get the job done.

We picked a Michelin brand wiper as our low cost option because they are a well-known and trusted brand that that has been providing its customers with quality automotive goods for over a century.

Trico Exact Fit– Low Price Option

Pros
-Cheap
-Reliable brand
-Extensive compatibility
-Extensive sizing
-Conventional, Hybrid, and Beam option
-Easy installation
-Uniform pressure

Cons
-No significant cons

We all want to believe we have multiple options in life, and that is true even when we are buying our windshield wipers. With the Trico Exact Fit, you get multiple windshield wiper options, with the added benefit of not having to give in on cost!

The Exact Fits come in 3 different styles: conventional, hybrid, and beam. This means that no matter where you live or the weather you may encounter, Trico has an Exact Fit Wiper that will perform well for your vehicle. No matter which style you choose to buy, you can be sure that you won’t empty your wallet in the process, as all 3 styles are on the relatively cheaper end of the spectrum.

DON’T let the low prices fool you! Trico is a trusted and well-established brand that you can be sure only makes top-quality products, and in terms of replacement blades, the Exact Fit is an awesome cheap option.

ALSO, make sure that when you click our link to purchase them, you specify whether you want the Conventional, Hybrid, or Beam style blade in the search bar.

Still having problems? Call a FIXD Mechanic Today!Our team of ASE certified Mechanics is here to answer any questions and to give you unbiased advice before you go to a shop and pay $$$.

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Comments 4

Dana Hughes

November 7, 2018

Very informative!

Dana Hughes

November 7, 2018

Very informative piece!

FIXD Marketing

November 8, 2018

Thanks Dana! Glad it was helpful!

FIXD Team

Tamara

November 20, 2018

Super helpful!