With this recent snowstorm, the question came flooding back into my head, is it better to leave my windshield wipers down, or should I put them up?

I truly don’t know what is better but either way, I always forget!

I did not realize there is truly a big debate on this and there are many people on both sides to this argument.

I scoured the internet to find some answers and I think this website makes it clear what is best.

Erieinsurance.com asked Harold Singh, material damage claims quality control manager at Erie Insurance, to help determine what system is better: leaving your wipers down, or putting them up.

Those Who Lift Their Wipers Up:


The drivers who lift their windshield wipers when it snows share many reasons why it is helpful. Having your wipers up and out of the way makes it easier to scrape ice and snow from the windshield.

Plus, it also prevents the soft rubber wiper blades from getting frozen to the glass. “If this has happened to you, you know it can be a pain to chip away ice from your frozen wipers. And attempting to pull them loose can make matters worse,” says Erie Insurance.

Those Who Leave Their Wipers Down:


Those who are on team Leave Down, say the cons outweigh the pros when lifting your wipers up. Erie Insurance notes that “not only does it require an extra step each time you get in and out of your vehicle, if your wipers do get frozen to the windshield, but your window defroster can also make quick work of melting the ice.”

Those who prefer to leave them also claim that “continually lifting your wipers can wear out their springs.” While Singh shares that this is not always true, I went to AutoZone and they state the following:

This is okay for a short time, like when you are changing the wiper blades. However, leaving them in the upward position for a long time can permanently stretch the springs over time. This is why it is not a good idea to leave your wiper blades up in preparation for cold precipitation. Once you stretch out that spring, the wiper arm can no longer provide the right amount of pressure, causing poor wipe quality.

So who wins this battle?

According to erieinsurance.com while there are risks either way, Singh, their professional says your best bet is to put them up. “The risk is higher that you’ll tear the rubber trying to free a frozen wiper blade. So leaving them up is probably your best bet, if you can do it,” says Singh.

From his experience, Singh says “there’s not a lot of vehicle damage reported from leaving wiper blades up or down during a snowstorm. However, he has seen auto claims related to the improper clearing of snow and ice.” So you know, don’t go using a shovel to clear your car!

So, I am going to try and lift my wipers up when we have another snowstorm (which will probably be tomorrow), but hey, if I forget I probably won’t be too mad about it.

All information is credited to erieinsurance.com and autozone.com.

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