Mechanic says you’re probably replacing wiper blades wrong, mistake could cost you $1K

@royaltyautoservice/TikTok เลิศลักษณ์ ทิพชัย/Adobe Stock (Licensed)

‘Learned it the hard way’: Mechanic says you’re probably replacing wiper blades wrong, mistake could cost you $1K

‘Wow, expensive lesson to learn .’


Beau Paul


If your car window wipers are squeaking as they move across your windshield your wiper blades are likely due for replacing. But have a look at this video by Royalty Auto Service before you do.

It might just save you the time and expense of replacing your windshield.

Sherwood Cooke from Royalty Auto Service (@royaltyautoservice) has given plenty of advice to car owners on the company’s TikTok page. This time, he’s confessing that he made the mistake he’s warning drivers about.

The video was posted to TikTok on May 7 and has garnered over half a million views as of Monday.

How to properly replace wiper blades

It doesn’t matter what car you’re driving, according to Cooke.

“I’ll give you this from personal experience,” he tells his viewers. “You’re putting wiper blades on, right?” he says before pulling a Subaru’s wiper arm up.

“No matter what, do not leave [the arm] up like that and walk away,” he warns. “Because there’s a possibility that that’s going to fall, hit that windshield, and if you want to know how I know that, I bought a $1,200 windshield on a Volvo once because that thing was sitting up, it fell down, and it cracked that entire windshield.”

“You’ll notice I’m not taking my hands off it. That was a very painful experience,” he tells his interviewer.

Cooke then puts the arm back into the down position, propping it up by about an inch with a small rectangular box.

“The box is not a bad idea either,” the person filming says.

Cooke goes on to say customers should be aware of the potential problem even if they are having their blades replaced at a parts store.

“They can be really expensive,” he concludes.

“Wow, expensive lesson to learn,” Mike Rhaburn (@mikerhaburn) wrote in the video’s comments section.

“Been there, unfortunately,” another viewer wrote in commiseration.

“Learned it the hard way. cracked the windshield. and that surprised me and I dropped my phone. cracked that too,” another viewer admitted.

@royaltyautoservice So simple yet can save you lots of money and heartache! #tips #cartips #mechanicsoftiktok #mechaniclife #automotive #carmaintenance #cartok #diy #fyp #foryou #viral #car #duet ♬ Pop beat BGM / long version(1283324) – nightbird_bgm

Plenty of other social media posts indicate that the tough lesson has been learned by many others.

On the Bimmerpost BMW forum, scottyn posted, “I was washing my car, and when I started to lift up the windshield wiper to clean underneath, it slipped out of my hand. It was probably only 3-4 inches off the glass at the time, but it slammed down and the blade came off. I didn’t think it would cause any real damage, but I was wrong. There’s now a huge starburst crack (with one of the legs going almost the entire height of the glass) and a 2-3 inch gouge right underneath the wiper.”

He included several pictures of the damage in the post.

In Reddit’s r/mechanics forum, a car dealership worker admitted to damaging a customer’s windshield this way.

“I’m used to F150 wiper arms that don’t need to be pushed back far to lock into place, but I guess I didn’t push the wiper arm back far enough on the passenger side for this truck and now they need a new windshield!” 

And in the MacResource forum, a poster wrote, “I was changing wiper blades. I did that so many times before. This time I wasn’t careful and the wiper arm WITHOUT WIPER snapped down and it cracked the windshield. 100% my error. Stupid not-paying-attention-error.”

The Daily Dot has reached out to Royalty and Cooke via TikTok messenger and Royalty’s website for further comments.

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