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Q: Wipers are streaking

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My wipers often leave streaks behind and no amount of washer fluid seems to get rid of them. I have to really wipe off the streaks by hand with a cloth and soapy water. My car only has 4k miles on it -- is it possible I need wiper blade refills already? It only rains a moderate amount near where I live (SF Bay Area).

A: Although you only have 4,000 miles on your ...

Although you only have 4,000 miles on your Prius, wiper blades aren’t given a mileage replacement interval. Instead, it’s recommended to change them out every six months because the rubber that creates the squeegee effect hardens and can’t conform to the windshield any longer. Anytime I see streaks on the windshield on my personal vehicle I figure that it’s time to swap them out for some fresh ones. If you park your car outside in the sunshine, the UV rays degrade the rubber blades and can cause early failure, try parking inside a garage or under some shade to help make them last longer next time. If you need assistance replacing your wiper blades, a mechanic can help install new ones on your car.

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