How to get to wiper arms?

Tiny
LAKESPEED
  • MEMBER
  • 1997 TOYOTA VAN
  • 2.8L
  • 4 CYL
  • RWD
  • MANUAL
  • 234,000 MILES
Just trying to sort out my wiper arms problem.

My front wipers are moving but the passenger side wiper seems to be spinning around and not moving the wiper arm like its supposed too?

Any ideas what it is and how to get to it?
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Friday, January 10th, 2014 AT 1:48 PM

6 Replies

Tiny
CARADIODOC
  • EXPERT
Look for a plastic cover that's snapped over the pivot. Pop that cover up and look for a nut. Be sure the arm is positioned properly, then tighten that nut.
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Friday, January 10th, 2014 AT 1:59 PM
Tiny
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Thanks for that. Is it easier to get the wipers from the dashboard or from removing the front grille?
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Friday, January 10th, 2014 AT 2:04 PM
Tiny
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I just checked and can't get to it from the grille so I'm guessing the dashboard has to come out.
Any ideas?
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Friday, January 10th, 2014 AT 4:04 PM
Tiny
CARADIODOC
  • EXPERT
Sorry to keep you waiting.

What exactly are you trying to solve, and which model do you have? It's pretty common for that pivot nut to work loose, and just tightening it makes the arm grab onto the splined shaft better. The symptom is one arm works normally but the other one either doesn't move at all or it sticks in various positions. There's no abnormal noise associated with this problem.

Another, less-common problem is the arm on the bottom of the shaft breaks off. I never fixed one on a Toyota, but generally the arm is just pressed onto the splined shaft, then the shaft is peened over to retain the arm. The fix is to remove the shaft assembly, tap the arm back on, and tack-weld it to keep it on. The alternative is to replace the assembly.

You should not have to go under the dash to work on the wipers. On a lot of newer models the entire wiper transmission and motor are mounted inside a large plastic bucket that can run the entire length of the bottom of the windshield. This is done more commonly on vans when there isn't real good access to the back of the engine compartment. You'll typically hear the arm / lever flopping around. That bucket is removed and unplugged, then it can be disassembled on the work bench.
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Friday, January 10th, 2014 AT 9:38 PM
Tiny
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It's a 97 Toyota Hiace van 2.8ltr diesel van. I originally thought that the spline on the wiper arm had been worn out and was spinning on the wiper pivot but when I replaced it with a whole new wiper arm it still spun around. So I'm guessing that the arm behind the pivot is either worn or loose. I can't seem to get in behind the dash to see it and was wondering how I could get to it?

Thanks in advance.
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Sunday, January 12th, 2014 AT 9:36 PM
Tiny
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I'm afraid I'm not familiar with that model. My best suggestion is to get a copy of the manufacturer's service manual. A good place to look is on eBay. There are online services too but they often don't cover things like this.

Wish I had a better answer for you.
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Sunday, January 12th, 2014 AT 10:35 PM

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