How to Fill Your Windshield Washer Fluid and Install New Wiper Blades and Inserts


Something we use a lot in our cars without even thinking about it is our windshield wipers, which means we also need to replace them when they get worn down, along with the windshield washer fluid. The good thing is both processes are pretty simple.

Buying the Right Windshield Washer Fluid

Windshield Washer FluidTo change your windshield washer fluid, you’ll need to first purchase the right windshield washer fluid for you. The number one thing you’ll want to consider is the current climate, as the type of fluid you get depends more on the environment than it does on the type of vehicle you drive.

Standard/Summer Windshield Washer Fluid

Your standard windshield washer fluid you find at the store is usually blue and is sometimes labeled as a “summer” windshield washer fluid. It’s usually the most inexpensive and can be found in most supermarkets and convenience stores or gas stations. If you see the “summer” fluid is selling for more, just go with the standard fluid, as there is no real difference. Because the standard fluid will freeze, it’s not a good option in colder weather.

Cold Weather Windshield Washer Fluid

If the temps are below freezing, you’re going to want to get a windshield washer fluid with a de-icer. Most winter windshield washer fluids have antifreeze in them and can go up to –20℉. There are some that can go lower though, so just check the label to see the lowest temperature it will work at and plan accordingly based on where you’re driving.

All-Season Windshield Washer Fluid

If you’re not sure which windshield washer fluid to get, you could try an all-season windshield washer fluid. These fluids generally provide a year-round solution for those who live somewhere with a moderate winter, but some can work at an even lower temperature. Just be careful to read the labels to see what the operational temperature is so that it works for your current climate.

Other Windshield Washer Fluids/Treatments

There are a couple other types of windshield washer fluids you can try as well. One type that is nice in the warmer months, is the kind that has some sort of bug wash in it. The bug repellent windshield washer fluids clean off bug guts by breaking down the proteins, making it easier to clean off the windshield. These windshield washer fluids do typically cost a couple extra dollars, and because they have less antifreeze in them, you won’t want to use this one in the cold weather.

Another fluid to try is a water repellent formula that forces rain to bead up on your windshield and roll off, which can help improve visibility when driving in heavy rain or snow. Sometimes it’s sold as a washer fluid, but it’s mostly sold as an additive you can mix with your current washer fluid or a liquid you can just wipe on your windshield using a cloth.

Our Recommendation

We recommend using a traditional all-season windshield washer fluid year round, specifically the Champion Windshield Washer Fluid that is rated to -20 degrees.

Filling the Windshield Wiper Fluid


Once you have the windshield washer fluid, just follow these steps to fill it up.

1. Pop the hood of your car and securely prop it open. 

2. Locate your windshield washer Reservoir Tank, which will feature a brightly colored plastic cap (usually blue) with an image of a windshield engraved on it.

3. Open your jug of windshield washer fluid. 

4. Pour the fluid into the tank until it reaches the fill line. If you do not see a fill line, leave a couple of inches of space at the top. If you want to avoid spills, try using a funnel.

5. Make sure to replace the cap once it’s full and lower your car’s hood until it locks shut. 


Buying the Right Windshield Wiper Blades & Inserts

Windshield Wiper Blades Sunset

When it comes time to change your windshield wiper blades or inserts, you’ll first need to buy the replacements, which will depend on what make and model vehicle you have. While most wiper blades and inserts are fairly standard parts, there are slight variations in designs, so you’ll need to buy the right parts for your car. You can find the part number you need in your owner’s manual, or you can call into our parts department and our staff would be happy to help you identify the wiper blades or inserts you need.

The average cost for wiper blades and inserts is between $15 and $30, depending on the type needed for your vehicle and the brand. If you are driving a Honda, we highly recommend you stick with Honda wiper inserts. The same goes with any other vehicle make, we suggest you stick to the manufacturer’s blades or inserts.

Changing the Windshield Wiper Blades & Inserts

Replace your old windshield wiper blades or inserts by following these steps

1. Remove the old ones by raising each wiper blade away from the windshield, starting with the driver’s side first. This will make accessing the removal mechanism easier. 

2. We recommend putting down a towel or some cardboard once you have the blades up. This will ensure you don’t damage the windshield if the wiper blade were to bounce back and hit it.

3. Around half way along each blade holder there will either be a pinch clip which you press inward from both sides, or a smaller peg clip which you press down into the blade arm. Either way, pressing the clip will loosen the blade, which you can then slide downward out of its holder. You can then remove the blades.

4. The next steps are different for whether you’re replacing the blades or inserts:

For Blades:

  • Attach the new blades by simply positioning the new blade so that the hooked end is pointing at the wiper attachment, and then slide it upward into the holder until you feel or hear a click as it slots into place. 
  • With the pinch clip type of holder you’ll need to apply pressure to open up the holder and make room for the new blade to slide in.

For Inserts:

  • Remove the old insert by grasping the insert tip and then pulling the insert out of the wiper blade. 
  • Remove the two metal splines from the old insert and put them on the new insert.
  • Slide the new insert back into the wiper arm until the end firmly sits against the bottom of the blade. 
  • Reattach the blade to the tip of the arm, in reverse order of removing it, by closing the recessed lever. 

5. Once the new inserts or blades are solidly in place, carefully fold the wipers back down onto the windshield as normal. You can use this process for the rear window wipers as well.

6. Now is a good time to test it all and make sure the windshield washer fluid works, and the new wiper blades are properly fitted and aligned. If they leave streaks of water behind, loosen and re-fix the blades until the problem is fixed.

Don’t know what to buy? Order your windshield wiper blades or inserts through our parts department.

Don’t have time to do this yourself? Our friendly Service Advisors are ready to help you. You can stop in or schedule an appointment online or over the phone at 608-268-3161.

Check out our current service specials to see what we are offering today.

Windshield Wiper Blades