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Tested: Best Wiper Blades for 2022

If your wipers don't move the rain off your windshield like they used to, it may be time for an upgrade.

best wiper blades 2022
Andi HedrickCar and Driver

We've all been there—happily driving along when suddenly you're hit with torrential rain unleashed like a power washer from the skies. In those intense, white-knuckle moments, you lose visibility. The car in front of you disappears, and the rain's roar silences your music. You flip that windshield wiper stalk to the max speed and let the wipers go to work, flinging off water in a mad frenzy. Almost immediately, visibility returns—as does the circulation to your fingers. Indeed, visibility is a driver's most important tool.

Since a good set of windshield wipers is essential for every vehicle, we set out to determine the very best wiper blades on the market today. To find them, we ordered a set from major brands such as Rain-X, Bosch, and others. We then tested them with varying simulated rain settings and noted ease of installation, unusual squeaking, streaking, and residue left behind. After getting sprayed by our homemade rain simulator more times than we would've liked, we have the results.

So if you're noticing any squeaking, streaking, or otherwise poor operation from your current vehicle's wiper blades, it's time to replace them. A new good set of wipers will improve your visibility, keeping you, your passengers, and other drivers around you safe. Here are our picks for the best wiper blades you can buy for your vehicle.

Note: Each vehicle's wiper blades will be different. Make sure to research which blades fit your vehicle. The easiest way to do this is to call an auto parts store, but if you want to purchase blades elsewhere, always verify the size you need. We found the "Fits Your Vehicle" function on Amazon isn't always accurate, so verify via a second source just to be sure.

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Our Top Picks

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How We Test Wiper Blades
windshield wiper installation
Andi HedrickCar and Driver

To properly test these wiper blades, we wanted to simulate different wet-weather conditions as accurately as possible. So, naturally, we used a garden hose! Since the garden hose at the Car and Driver garage has multiple settings, we were able to simulate light, medium, and torrential rain.

Now that we had the precipitation set up, we hopped in the driver's seat to operate the wipers themselves. We alternated between intermittent, medium, and high wiper speed on each level of simulated rain—running each speed for 30 seconds. Once we cycled through the water levels, we ran the blades for 30 seconds on a dry windshield and noted any noises or streaks.

We then compiled our results based on ease of installation, water removal at each speed, squeaks, chatters, streaking, adapter quality, and, finally, price. Once the tests were complete, we felt satisfied that each wiper blade was tested and judged equally in every area of concern.

best wiper blades 2022
Andi HedrickCar and Driver

Are expensive wiper blades worth it?

Expensive wiper blades can make for a good investment, especially if the costs reflect added features like rain repellent or silicone blades. If you can justify the larger cost up front, they're typically worth it. However, there are cheaper wiper blades that do the job just fine—they just lack some key features that improve operation.

Bear in mind, if you live in a dry, arid region such as Phoenix or Las Vegas, premium wiper blades aren't nearly as critical to safe driving as they would be if you live in, say, Portland or Seattle. It's your car and your call.

Rubber vs. silicone blades: Which is better?

Silicone blades are built to last up to twice as long as conventional ones, and that durability can help them perform better than rubber blades in demanding conditions. However, silicone blades are still more expensive than normal rubber.

The big advantage to silicone blades is they stay pliable in winter and tend to not freeze to your windshield. In climates where that's common, you know how valuable that can be.

How do I find out what wiper blade I need?

This can be easily done in your vehicle's owner's manual. Just flip to the wiper-blade section, and it should plainly lay out the size you need. Calling a dealership for OEM wiper blades is the safest way to ensure you buy the correct blades, and calling an auto parts store works as well.

If your vehicle has a specialized wiper arm, you'll need to verify that a wiper blade is compatible with that style. They usually tell you which styles work on the packaging and feature an adapter that will fit on your vehicle.

How often should I replace my wiper blades?

A good rule of thumb for this is every 12 months. But because noticing worn wiper blades is pretty easy, this is really up to you. If your wiper blades start streaking, squeaking, chattering, or just not removing water like they used to, it's time to replace them. If you use your wiper blades on rough ice before it has melted, this will seriously decrease the lifespan of your wiper blades, so keep that in mind.

Why trust us?

Car and Driver and its sibling publications at Hearst Autos represent three of the most influential automotive publications in the world. With the legacies of Autoweek, Car and Driver, and Road & Track behind us, the Hearst Autos Gear Team doesn’t need to worry about our bottom line. Our picks and recommendations of products and gear are based on testing and knowledge, not hype.

For consistency, this test was conducted in an environment that provided equal testing procedures for each product: the Car and Driver garage. We tested the wiper blades on each wiper speed and with varying rainfall amounts. We then graded each wiper blade on ease of installation, water removal at each speed, squeaks, chatters, streaking, adapter quality, and, finally, price.

Upon tallying up our findings, we agreed that our test was fair, legitimate, and provided the most complete information for us to recommend our picks.

Read more about our product testing and evaluation process here.

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