What is the Washer Fluid Level Switch all about?
Many vehicles are equipped with a washer fluid level switch or sensor that illuminates a light on the dash when the fluid is low in the washer fluid reservoir. The switch is located at the bottom of the washer fluid reservoir and is a simple resistance switch. When the sensor no longer recognizes the correct electrical resistance because there isn’t washer fluid touching the sensor, it sends a signal for the low washer fluid level warning to illuminate. To prevent the warning from coming on when the washer fluid is sloshing in the reservoir, there is typically a one minute delay before the warning illuminates. If the washer fluid level switch is not working as it should, the low washer fluid level warning will not illuminate before the reservoir is empty or will be illuminated all the time, even with a full reservoir.
Keep in mind:
- If you run straight water in your reservoir, the developing mold can damage the switch, pump motor, lines, and nozzles.
- The washer fluid level switch can be damaged by frozen fluids in the reservoir.
How it's done:
- The faulty washer fluid level switch is located and identified
- The washer fluid tank is drained and the washer fluid level switch is removed
- The new washer fluid level switch is installed and connected
- The washer fluid tank is filled and checked for leaks
- The washer system is tested for proper operation
The washer fluid level switch does not require maintenance, though you should make sure the correct fluid is used depending on the ambient temperature to prevent fluid from freezing. If you experience symptoms of a washer fluid level switch failure, have one of our expert mechanics inspect and replace it.
What common symptoms indicate you may need to replace the Washer Fluid Level Switch?
- Washer fluid reservoir runs empty without the low fluid indicator illuminating
- Low washer fluid indicator is on even with a full washer fluid reservoir
How important is this service?
The most detrimental effect a faulty washer fluid level switch can have is that you may run out of washer fluid unexpectedly. Not all vehicles are equipped with a washer fluid level switch, so it is categorized as a convenience feature. Have the switch replaced at your convenience.