Where to Put Windshield Wiper Fluid (Answered)

Are you wondering where to put windshield wiper fluid in your vehicle? If so, then you are on the right page.

This article answers the question of where to put windshield wiper fluid as well as a step-by-step guide on how to properly put windshield wiper fluid on your vehicle.

As you read further, you will also learn how to choose the right windshield washer fluid for your vehicle, and there is also an FAQ section to answer any other related questions you might have.

Let’s begin!

How to Add Windshield Washer Fluid to Your Vehicle

Step 1. Locate the Windshield Washer Fluid Reservoir

The year of production, model, and make of your car will determine the location of the windshield washer fluid reservoir. Oftentimes, it can be found beside the engine bay or by the firewall close to the windshield.

Symbols similar to the windshield with moving wipers will be marked on the reservoir. You can consult your user’s manual for more guidance if you cannot find the reservoir.

Related: Windshield Wipers Won’t Turn Off (Causes & Solution)

Step 2. Identify the Low and Full Lines on the Reservoir

Observe the high and low fill lines by the side when the reservoir is found. The windshield washer fluid reservoirs are mostly produced with translucent plastic, with lines by the side to indicate the quantity of fluid in the reservoir. Check and be sure the fluid level in the tank is low before you top up.

When the level of fluid in your reservoir is high but refuses to spray, this could be caused by clogged lines. A faulty sensor could be responsible for the low wiper light popping up when the fluid level in your reservoir is high.

Step 3. Open the Cap and Set It Aside

Turn the cap in a counter-clockwise direction to unfasten it, then take it off. Keep the cap in a safe place. Keep it away from debris or dirt to avoid introducing particles inside the fluid while replacing the cap.

The presence of debris and dirt in the reservoir could cause the washer lines of the windshield to get clogged. Be careful not to get the cap destroyed. If it doesn’t fit properly on the reservoir, you must get a replacement.

Step 4. Add Windshield Washer Fluid Until It Reaches the Full Line

Using the sprout on top of the wiper fluid bottle or a funnel, carefully pour the fluid into your reservoir till it gets to the “full’ mark. Use a rag or paper towels to clean any spilled fluid. When the reservoir is full, observing from the side should be possible.

Step 5. Avoid Overfilling the Reservoir

Avoid overfilling the reservoir to prevent the expansion of fluid when heated. Because of the increased temperatures under the bonnet, the pressure could lead to the reservoir cracking and leaking if it has excess fluid.

If you overfilled the reservoir, you could suck out excess fluid using a turkey baster.

Step 6. Screw the Cap Back Into Place

Once you have successfully filled the reservoir with wiper fluid, pick up the cap from where you kept it. Clean it thoroughly using a towel or rag to eliminate any debris or dirt in it.

Place it back on top of the reservoir, and rotate it clockwise to fasten it. If any damage occurs to the cap, you can get a replacement at the nearest auto parts outlet.

Step 7. Start the Vehicle and Test the Fluid Sprayer

Go into the car and place your key inside the ignition. Switch on the car and engage your washer fluid to ensure it’s working efficiently.

Many windshield wiper fluid jets gets activated by pulling or pressing the windshield controls. You can consult your user’s manual if you aren’t sure about how the windshield is activated.

Chech out this video for more tips on how to add windshield washer fluid

Choosing the Correct Wiper Fluid for Your Car

Most vehicle owners argue that you should use wiper fluid, while others say water can do the job perfectly. Yes, water can perform the work, but you will miss out on the advantages that a wiper fluid offer.

Let’s analyze the advantages of wiper fluid usage over water usage.

Advantages of Using Windshield Wiper Fluid Over Water

Don’t use water for your windshield if you live in a cold region. The water may get frozen inside your vehicle during winter, causing damage to the washer system. It could also get frozen on the windshield as you try clearing winter mud away from the shield, and this could lead to reduced visibility when the visibility during winter is already poor.

The windshield washer fluid contains some antifreeze components that prohibit freezing during winter. The windshield washer makes sure your washes are streak-free whenever it is activated.

Most washer fluids are designed specially to remove dead bugs from the windshield, especially in areas with bug problems. During fall, spring, and summer, you can easily dilute your wiper fluid without any challenge.

However, during winter, do not dilute your wiper fluid.

You can equally use water if your region does not experience extreme winter weather. It is less expensive anyway. But, it could become an issue if you drive to a cold neighborhood with water inside your wiper tank. Always try to use a wiper fluid because it is safer.

Also Read: Coolant Reservoir Empty (Causes & Fix)

Preparing Windshield Washer Fluid

For effectiveness, it is important not to use only water in the windshield wiper fluid. The normal windshield wiper fluid is formulated to prevent freezing in extremely cold weather and streaking. However, the anti-freezing wiper fluid could be your only option if you live in a region that experiences very low temperatures frequently.

The antifreeze wiper fluid could help defrost your windshield whenever an ice layer is formed in the morning.

Chemicals that allow water to bead off the glass are contained in other windshield wiper fluids, increasing visibility while driving in the rain.

If you bought a concentrated wiper fluid, you might have to dilute the wiper fluid before using it on your vehicle. Just like antifreeze, concentrated wiper fluid can be mixed in a 50/50 proportion with water.

A 50/50 proportion of fluid to water means half fluid, half water. Follow instructions provided on the particular brand of wiper fluid you buy.

Where to Put Windshield Wiper Fluid

Frequently Asked Questions – Where to Put Windshield Wiper Fluid

Can you just put water in the windshield wiper fluid?

Using plain water in place of washer fluid has its risks. The water will not clean the windshield as much as the wiper fluid. Water does not possess the cleaning strength to get rid of grime and insects on the glass, and it leaves extra streaks behind, which impedes the driver’s vision.

How much windshield wiper fluid do I put in?

The windshield wiper fluid should be poured through the opening directly into the reservoir. You can also use a funnel to avoid spilling the fluid, but it can also be done without using a funnel, only if you are extra careful. If the fill line is not visible, you can fill it to about three-quarters of the reservoir.

How do you fill a wiper with liquid?

Get the wiper fluid reservoir opened. Use a funnel to pour the liquid into the jar until it reaches the fill mark. If the fill mark is not visible, leave some space in the reservoir. Place the cap back and close your bonnet.

How long does wiper fluid last?

The windshield wiper fluid is mostly made up of water and some methanol, making it last indefinitely. You will have no issue using the product after leaving it open.

How do you check windshield wiper fluid?

You could check the wiper fluid level by opening the bonnet and removing the windshield washer fluid reservoir cap. You can also check the fluid level by the reservoir side depending on its location and top up if necessary. Try to avoid the use of water to avoid freezing.

When should I refill my windshield wiper fluid?

Learning how to replace the wiper blades should be the next thing after understanding how the wiper fluid could be refilled. You can do this every six to twelve months or after three to six windshield wiper refills. When your wiper blades are worn out, that may not effectively prevent the rain or any other weather condition.

Do you need to empty the windshield washer fluid?

During stormy weather, the windshield water fluid serves as a lifesaver. You will have to drain out the old fluid if your washer fluid is long gone and make a replacement with the new fluid.

Conclusion – Where to Put Windshield Wiper Fluid

You should put the windshield wiper fluid into the windshield washer fluid reservoir.

Finding the washer fluid reservoir should not be any problem. Vehicle manufacturers make the wiper fluid reservoir easy to find. Search for a yellow or white container with a bright-colored cap carrying a windshield sign and fill it up to the full line.

Refilling your washer fluid is quite easy, but if you are not careful, it may go wrong. Check the washer fluid level frequently to ensure you don’t run out of fluid when driving.

You could use water as a wiper fluid, and nothing would go wrong, but using a windshield washer fluid is highly recommended.

Scott Greene is a seasoned automotive technician for over 5 years and has been deep into advanced automotive diagnostics for a couple of years. He Loves writing about Automotive Diagnostics and Repair, Trouble codes, Buyer guides for various car parts and accessories, and lots more. 

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