Tips

Demystification: Framed vs Frameless Windshield Wiper Blades

We sell both framed and frameless windshield wiper blades in our online shop. So, what’s the difference? For many applications, not much. It often comes down to a matter of aesthetics. Do you like the clean profile of a single bar? Choose frameless. Do you prefer the high-performance look of a framed blade? Great.

framed windshield wiper blade

framed windshield wiper blade

frameless windshield wiper blade

frameless windshield wiper blade

That said, there are a few differences.

Framed Wiper Blades:

  • Available up to 52” in length

  • Require slightly less force to stay on windshield

Frameless Wiper Blades:

  • Available up to 32” in length

  • Include less steel, so can be beneficial in marine environments to avoid rust

  • Frequently preferred for RVs because they offer a streamlined appearance and don’t stand out against the tinted part of the windshield glass when at park

Whichever wiper blades you choose, note that all AM Equipment blades come with a protective plastic cover over the rubber portion. This cover ensures a longer lifespan for the rubber, plus it protects the graphite coating, which helps the blades travel smoothly across the glass. Don’t forget to remove the cover before use!

Find Road Trip Essentials In Our RV Replacement Parts Guide

Whether you’re headed out on a national park tour, a desert road trip, or doing some camping in the mountains, ensure your RV is road-worthy before you go. From our perspective, that means excellent visibility! You never know when you’ll hit a summer storm, extra dust, or pesky insects, so check that your windshield wiper system is in tip top shape before you hit the road.

RV-windshield-wipers.png

Maybe you just need some fresh windshield wiper bladesinspect them every six months!

Maybe your whole windshield wiper system is on the fritz and you need a motor, wiper arms, and blades. To make replacement as easy as possible, we created an RV Replacement Parts Guide where you can look up your coach by make, model, and year to find the correct motor, arms, and blades.

For the sake of your safety and the excellent views, keep that windshield clear!

How To Measure Windshield Wiper Blades

Measuring windshield wiper blades is so simple, you might second guess yourself and wonder if there’s more to it. Nope!

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Use a tape measure to determine the length of the wiper blade along the rubber wiper edge. Round to the nearest inch, and there you go—you’ve got your wiper blade length!

We offer both framed and frameless standard duty wiper blades in our shop for all of your windshield-clearing needs.

Avoid Slow Windshield Wipers on Trains and Light Rail

Do you know what's a drag?  Sluggish windshield wipers on your train.  Here's a tip to help you out.

train-windshield-wipers.png

The nominally 12 V and 24 V wiper motors that power boat, truck and tractor wiper systems really operate at charging voltages of 13.5 V and 27 V, respectively.  However, many locomotive generating systems operate at 110 V and light rail often runs at 74 V.  They then use an inverter to step down high-voltage.

If you use a setpoint of 24 V or 12 V, you’ll end up with wipers that operate at a snail's pace. Instead, use setpoints of either 27 V or 13.5 V to pep up your wipers.

Easy, right?  Contact us if you've still got questions.

 

What's Your Windshield Wiper Park Position?

“Park position” refers to the place wipers stop when the system is turned off.  We designate the park position by which direction the arm travels to reach that location, either clockwise (CW) to park or counter-clockwise (CCW) to park.  These terms speak to directions as viewed from outside the vehicle looking in.

Confusing?  A little.  These diagrams should help.

Radial Park Positions

Radial Park Positions

Pantograph Park Positions

Pantograph Park Positions

For more definitions and answers, visit our Glossary & FAQs page.

Is It Time for New Wiper Blades?

There are a few ways to determine whether your current windshield wiper blades have overstayed their welcome. 

old-windshield-wipers.png

First, take a look at them.  Does the rubber look cracked and brittle?  The result can be insufficient windshield wiping coverage.  Are the frames rusty?  That can happen when your blades have served you through winter weather or in a marine environment.  Also check to make sure the blades have good contact with the glass, since a bend can hinder them from doing their job.

The easiest way to know you need new blades is by using your current ones.  Do they leave streaks?  Make a squeaking sound?  Chatter across the windshield?  Probably time to say goodbye and start with fresh ones.  

How can you keep your blades working at their best as long as possible?  Make sure your windshield is clean, and never use your windshield wipers on dry glass.  Bear in mind, wiper blades aren't meant to last forever because rubber is a natural product that is affected by its environment.  We recommend inspecting your windshield wiper blades every six months and replacing as needed for maximum visibility.