The mechanical linkage between the wiper motor and wiper arms is typically called a wiper transmission or wiper linkage assembly. Dodge also calls this a wiper module. The wiper transmission assembly allows the mechanical rotary output of the wiper motor to transfer that power to 2 wiper arms/blades. This mechanical linkage provides millions of cycles of operation over the years and therefor is prone to failure. Also using the wiper in heavy weather conditions like ice & snow put much more strain on the wiper transmission. Many times the wiper transmission will come apart and this will cause the wiper to move separately from each other, not work at all, or work sporadically.
Tools Required: Basic hand tools including screw drivers, wrenches, ratchets & sockets is all that is needed for this repair.
The following instructions are specifically for a 2003-2005 Dodge Ram Pickup, however they are very similar for many vehicles:
Step 1. Remove the wiper arms from the vehicle. Lift the wiper blades away from the windshield. Once you lift them to about 90 degrees from the windshield, they will stay in place. Next search around the bottom of the wiper arm where it attaches to the wiper transmission. Once you find the base of the wiper arm, their is a little lever to lift up or pull out, This lever is what locks the wiper arms to the wiper transmission. Once you lift that lever, gently rock the wiper arms up and off of the wiper transmission pivots.
Step 2. Open the hood and disconnect the negative battery terminal
Step 3. Remove the Cowl, which is the cover located below the windshield and where the wiper pivots stick out. The wiper transmission or wiper module as Dodge calls it, is located under this cowl. Their will be a rubber hood seal at the front edge of the cowl to remove, This simply pulls off. Their will be 6 push pin fasteners located around the front perimeter of the cowl. Remove these, then their is 2 bolts holding the cowl in place. These bolts are located at each corner of the cowl.Remove these bolts and now you can lift the cowl up and out of the way.
Step 4. Unplug the wiring harness for the wiper motor, This is a snap together connector located at the back of the wiper motor. Some models may have a little lock tab that should be released.
Step 5. Remove the 2 bolts attaching the wiper module in place. See image below:
Step 6. Remove the remaining screw that is securing the wiper module to the bottom of the cowl plenum.
Step 7. Lift out and remove the wiper module/wiper transmission assembly
Installation is the same steps in reverse order.
TIPS: The number one cause of wiper transmission failure besides normal wear and tear is running the wipers during any condition that stresses the wiper system as a whole. This is typically snow or ice. It is strongly recommended to remove any snow, ice, or other debris from the windshield before running the wipers. The wiper system was never designed to remove anything from the windshield besides normal rain.
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