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Super Moderator
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Discussion Starter #1
Has anybody been able to do something to muffle the annoying clunk sound when the windshield wiper reverses its stroke? The sound at the top position is by far the louder of the two.
 

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The Modfather
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Have you tried another brand of wipers? The holder and rubber? I wonder if your holder is getting worn? My Icons don't have holders in the traditional sense so they seem pretty quiet.
 

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#8 Post ho
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So my friend isn't the only person in the world who notices it..

I don't know of a fix, doesn't bother me

I have a feeling peaty will

are you talking about the mini-blinker sound?
 

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admin
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Recently when washing the 98S, I noticed that there is a lot of play in the windshield wipers. I can easily move them up and down 3". I don’t think that play was there years ago. My 04 doesn’t have any play in the windshield wipers when parked. I suspect something is either loose or worn. I need to look into it this weekend.

SenorSubie, does your 99 have 3" of play in the windshield wipers when parked?
 

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SuperRü said:
SenorSubie, does your 99 have 3" of play in the windshield wipers when parked?
I just got a funny look from my neighbor who happend to be out for a walk, and seeing me in my pajama's checking my windshield wipers.. :|

and yes, I can move them about 3"
 

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Today, I took apart the wipers on our 98S in search of the excess play in them. I could easily move the wipers up and down 3" when parked. They worked OK, but this play didn’t seem right.

I discovered the wiper motor arm and wiper link joint had a lot of play in it. The wiper link arm had slid off the white plastic bushing and was free floating off the bushing. I think that the bottom black rubber bushing has weakened with age and no longer holds it in place. Or possibly the bushing has just plain worn out. This week I will try and order new parts to see how they are any different and update this post.

My solution for now is to add a washer/spacer . By adding this the wiper link arm now stays on the bushing as it is supposed to do. The wipers now have no play in them just like new. There is nothing hard in this procedure, definitely a DIY item.





Wiper Assembly PDF
 

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Discussion Starter #8
SuperRü said:
My solution for now is to add a washer/spacer . By adding this the wiper link arm now stays on the bushing as it is supposed to do. The wipers now have no play in them just like new.
A good piece of detective work. Does this do anything to the clunk?
 

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Our 98 didn't clunk, it was just sloppy. Any clunkers want to give this a try. :wink:
 

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Just a quick update. Those parts are not available separately. You have to buy the whole arm assembly. We will see how this solution holds up in the long run.
 

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Hey, I'm a new member who joined after finding this thread. I also cross posted to another thread so please forgive me. I am having the clunky, loose wipers problem also, and in fact the last two passenger side wiper blades have busted off from hitting the base of the windshield. I'd like to do the repair described above, but I'm a little auto body challenged. How do you get the plastic shroud off to expose the wiper assembly? I see some triangular cover plates in the corner, which seem to be held on with rubber plugs but I'm afraid I'll tear the plugs when I try to pry them out. I get that the wiper arms have to come off before the shroud can be removed :icon_idea: Any help would be awesome as it is raining like crazy around here. TIA.
 

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Thank You!

I encountered this VERY problem with my 03 WRX. The bushing on the left-side ball link was worn out, meanwhile the right-side link was in perfect condition no slack/slop whatsoever.

I took the free/cheap approach to fix this problem as well, as I did not want to fork out any cash for the whole assembly just to fix a bushing problem.

I ended up using a brass washer and two stainless steel shims to fill the gap ( I also applied grease for lubrication). I then re-installed the plastic cap on the ball joint and there is no play whatsoever. I just did this over the weekend, but I don't have any doubts about longevity. I feel that the brass washer and SS Shims will hold up much better than the cheap plastic bit.

My question to everyone that has dealt with this is: Was it the left or right ball joint plastic washer that had the problem? I'd like to see if its a common problem with the same side.

I also feel like Subaru sold-out on the wiper mechanism by using these cheap plastic parts. Perhaps using a bronze spacer and/or a sealed bearing would have worked better. From my research this is a VERY common problem among the Impreza groups, but I found the washer solution here first and that's why I became a member of this forum to give my gratitude and support. Comments and questions are welcomed.

Today, I took apart the wipers on our 98S in search of the excess play in them. I could easily move the wipers up and down 3" when parked. They worked OK, but this play didn’t seem right.

I discovered the wiper motor arm and wiper link joint had a lot of play in it. The wiper link arm had slid off the white plastic bushing and was free floating off the bushing. I think that the bottom black rubber bushing has weakened with age and no longer holds it in place. Or possibly the bushing has just plain worn out. This week I will try and order new parts to see how they are any different and update this post.

My solution for now is to add a washer/spacer . By adding this the wiper link arm now stays on the bushing as it is supposed to do. The wipers now have no play in them just like new. There is nothing hard in this procedure, definitely a DIY item.





Wiper Assembly PDF
 

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Grommet Fixes 'Wiper Clunk'

This is a DIY fix for a dollar. The white plastic caps that join the wiper arms together in the wiper assembly commonly wear and break under normal use. 1984 - 1986 Honda CRX and Civics also used these plastic caps for a short time - much to my dismay. In my 2000 Subaru Legacy and Subaru Forester (should work on 2001, 2002, 2003, and 2004 models as well), there is an easy DIY solution that will take care of the excessive play in the wiper travel, as well as the common 'wiper clunk'.
Head over to your local auto parts store an purchase a PCV Valve grommet for a Toyota. Part number 42058. These are only a dollar, and are normally stocked on the shelf. If you put the phrase 'pcv valve 42058' into to Google Image Search you will see what I mean. I’m attaching a picture as well.
For installation, gain access to the wiper assembly, I recommend removing the entire assembly (arms and motor) from below the black trim piece under the windshield. Inspect all the joints. If you have a loose joint, remove the white plastic cap and the arm from the ball joint. Slide the PCV Valve Grommet over the ball joint and press the arm into the grommet. This is now a perfect, snug fit. Wiper blades slamming into the car is a thing of the past.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Wow, this is one of the best intro posts I've seen here! Welcome, and thanks for the good info.

As an anti-spam measure, new members are restricted from posting links (such as to a picture site) till they've accrued 15 posts, but you can attach pictures directly by means of the Additional Options box at the bottom of the compose or advanced edit pages.

Now head over to the New Member Introductions Forum and tell us more about yourself and your ride. Glad to have you here.
 

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How to gain access to the wiper assembly

I'd like to do the repair described above, but I'm a little auto body challenged. How do you get the plastic shroud off to expose the wiper assembly? I see some triangular cover plates in the corner, which seem to be held on with rubber plugs but I'm afraid I'll tear the plugs when I try to pry them out.
This is the process for a 2000 Legacy Sedan


  • Remove windshield wiper bolt caps. These are black plastic caps that cover the nut that holds the wiper arm to the tower that protrudes from plastic shroud.
  • Remove wiper arm nuts that hold the wiper to the tower.
  • Remove wipers
  • Remove gasket / engine compartment seal. This seal is located between the engine compartment and gutter that the wiper arm and motor sit in. This seal sits just on top of the shroud and keeps it tight to the body with small plastic T shaped clips. It runs the length of the top of the engine compartment if you are standing in front of the car. Gently lift up one edge and you'll see a black plastic clip. Squeeze it with a needle nose pliers, place the pliers between the frame and gasket as you are gently lifting. Continue from one side of the engine compartment to the other until it is removed. If one T shaped clip comes out of the gasket, no worries, you can easily force it back in.
  • Remove the shroud. There are larger white clips, spaced about 8 inches apart, that are just under the windshield. Place both hands under the shroud, find the first clips on one side of the car and gently pull up, the clip will release and the shroud will pop up. Repeat the process as you work your way to the other side of the car. There is also a small rubber seal between the shroud and windshield, pay attention to how it connects to the shroud for installation. This is only there to prevent rattles.
  • The wiper arm assembly and motor are now exposed. Three 10mm bolts hold it in, two located to the extreme driver side of the gutter and one in the center of the gutter. The center bolt needs to be removed from inside the engine compartment.
  • Disconnect the electrical connection using two regular head screw drivers. Press the light grey clip down with one screw driver and use the other to separate the black and light grey connectors by placing it between the two and slowly twisting. A little twisting and tugging of the connector should also help get the two separated.
  • You can now remove the assembly and inspect it for wear. Install is reverse of removal. Just be sure you plug the electrical connector back into the assembly and motor when you reinstall.
 

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This is a DIY fix for a dollar. The white plastic caps that join the wiper arms together in the wiper assembly commonly wear and break under normal use. 1984 - 1986 Honda CRX and Civics also used these plastic caps for a short time - much to my dismay. In my 2000 Subaru Legacy and Subaru Forester (should work on 2001, 2002, 2003, and 2004 models as well), there is an easy DIY solution that will take care of the excessive play in the wiper travel, as well as the common 'wiper clunk'.
Head over to your local auto parts store an purchase a PCV Valve grommet for a Toyota. Part number 42058. These are only a dollar, and are normally stocked on the shelf. If you put the phrase 'pcv valve 42058' into to Google Image Search you will see what I mean. I’m attaching a picture as well.
For installation, gain access to the wiper assembly, I recommend removing the entire assembly (arms and motor) from below the black trim piece under the windshield. Inspect all the joints. If you have a loose joint, remove the white plastic cap and the arm from the ball joint. Slide the PCV Valve Grommet over the ball joint and press the arm into the grommet. This is now a perfect, snug fit. Wiper blades slamming into the car is a thing of the past.
Hi!

Do you mind posting a photo of the installed grommet for everyone to see? Also, by installing the grommet, you will not be able to reinstall the white plastic lock. Am I correct? Thanks!
 

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sure as sh*t this works, did the swap on my 98, pretty painless and doesnt take a genius. I had the clunk and the 3" of play and both are gone, great DIY
 

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Wow, this is one of the best intro posts I've seen here! Welcome, and thanks for the good info.

As an anti-spam measure, new members are restricted from posting links (such as to a picture site) till they've accrued 15 posts, but you can attach pictures directly by means of the Additional Options box at the bottom of the compose or advanced edit pages.

Now head over to the New Member Introductions Forum and tell us more about yourself and your ride. Glad to have you here.

BB, this the picture from Google Pictures of the PCV Valve 42058.



P.S. Just be aware that the rubber will perish over time with heat and use, but for a buck and a couple of minutes of your time it is a quick fix if it does indeed work.
 

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PCV valve worked but didn't last long, $4 replacement bushing seems better

First, I really appreciate those who posted advice in this thread. I found the thread by googling a description of the problem I was experiencing. The advice posted here put me on the right track to solve the problem for less than $10.

The driver's side wiper on my 2000 Legacy had too much play similar to what has been described in this thread. It became increasingly worse and eventually, at speeds above 45mph, the wiper would travel over the edge of the windshield before being whipped back with a bang. It was dangerous and inconvenient.

I found this discussion, identified that I had a worn out link joint as others described, and used a PCV Valve to fix the problem. The wiper worked great for about six weeks but then failed suddenly and completely. I was almost home from a long winter trip when my wipers stopped moving altogether.

I removed the wiper assembly and discovered that the action of the wiper had almost completely severed the valve and the arm had jumped off the socket. I went to an auto parts store and found a "Wiper Linkage Bushing Assortment". Brand is "Dorman Help!", model number is 49447, and cost was ~$4.

One of the sizes of bushings fit quite well. However, there was a gap that needed to be eliminated. I cut the little bit of rubber that was keeping the almost severed valve together and used the bottom part as a washer. It filled the gap and the new bushing now creates a tight connection.

Time will tell if this new solution lasts. I caution those who experience the linkage problem that a valve-only solution might not last. The replacement bushing is fairly low cost and should be more durable.

I am attaching several photos to show the various components I mentioned.

All the best,
Erik
 

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