Finding The Best Windshield Washer Fluid: What Kind Do You Need

Whether you’re driving on a hot and humid or a cold and windy day, chances are, you’ll wind up with different particles stuck in your windshield. A windshield washer helps eliminate rain, snow, ice, and other forms of debris from your car’s windshield. Almost all types of motor vehicles are equipped with this device for both legal and safety reasons.

A washer fluid or sometimes called a wiper fluid is used to clean the windshield with the use of a wiper so that you can have a clean and stain-free view of the road. Thus, we’ve collected the best windshield washer fluid reviews for your reference.

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**Below, you'll find our more detailed reviews, but you can also click the links above to see current prices or read customer reviews on Amazon.

What Makes A Washer Fluid Important​

Imagine yourself driving at night with heavy rain pouring down your windshield. You won’t be able to see anything on the road and it may just put you in an accident. This is why a washer fluid is crucial to your safety.

Here are 6 reasons why you need a washer fluid in your washer system:​

It Acts As A Lubricant​

A washer fluid acts as a lubricant to keep the parts of the washer system functioning properly including the pump, hoses, and nozzles. Without a washer fluid, the parts can become corroded and therefore damaging the rest of the mechanism.

The fluid pump may not properly operate, the rubber may crack due to loss of moisture or the fluid system may leak.

An Empty Tank Will Damage The Wiper When Used​

A fluid pump without any fluid in the tank will wear down your device almost immediately. If your tank is empty then do not use your windshield wiper. Otherwise, you will just destroy and damage it.

You Won't Be Able To Clean Your Windshield​

​If your washer fluid reservoir is empty, you won’t be able to wash off the particles in your windshield. The dirt and filth accumulated in the glass will just continue to build up.

The wiper will only create a mess on the glass and make things harder for you to see. You should never attempt to drive your car with a dirty windshield.

auto-windshield

Safety Feature​

Any of the above reasons can hinder your windshield wiper from working effectively. It can also cause the mechanism to stop entirely. This may pose as a safety issue especially when you’re driving under various weather and environmental conditions.

Increases The Lifespan Of The Wiper​

The washer fluid helps extend the life of the wiper blades significantly.

Prevents Scratches​

If you activate your wiper without a washer fluid to lubricate it, you may most likely end up scratching the glass. It is not safe to drive around with a windshield full of marks. If this happens, you need to have your glass fixed immediately.

As you can see, a washer fluid is very important for your wiper to work effectively. You should always keep your tank filled with a washer fluid formula. Nowadays, there are specially formulated fluids that can clear off bugs, repel rainwater, and prevent frosting.

How To Fill Your Tank With A Washer Fluid

​Now that you are aware why using a washer fluid is crucial to the efficiency of your wiper, the next thing you need to know is how to fill the washer tank with formula. It’s actually easy and simple. Just follow these quick steps:

Buy A High-Quality Windshield Washer Fluid

buy-a-windshield-washer-fluid

It is widely available so you can easily find one in most retail stores. Look for a small bottle that contains a blue liquid. You can easily spot it among the aisles due to its distinctive appearance.

Look For The Washer Fluid Tank​

washer-fluid-tank​-blue-cap

Pop-up your hood and look for the reservoir. Usually, in most vehicles, the washer fluid tank is indicated with a blue cap and has either an image of a windshield or a wiper. In some cars, the cap has an inscription that says washer fluid only.

Fill It Up​

Make sure you fill up the tank without spilling over. Then place back the cap and seal it completely.

Inspect your tank once a month and make sure you regularly fill it up with washer fluid.


Best Windshield Washer Fluid Reviews​ 2017

If you're wondering what type of washer fluid you should use for your car, here is a list of the best windshield washer fluid reviews to help you decide on which you think may work best for you. Here are five of our recommendations:

This washer fluid combines an all season formula and a bug wash technology for a strong solution to keep bugs away as well as eliminate tree saps. It removes dirt and road grime especially during spring and summer seasons while melting ice and frost during fall and winter season.

The Prestone All Season Windshield Washer Fluid works well in getting rid of bugs and other insects and it also doesn’t leave any streaks on your windshield. However, it doesn’t perform well in freezing conditions especially with temperatures of 20 degrees Fahrenheit and below. Otherwise, if you don’t need its antifreeze feature, this fluid will do the job.

Pros​

  • It doesn’t freeze at low temperatures making it appropriate to use during winter seasons and places with cold climates.
  • The fluid effectively cleans the windshield without leaving any marks on the glass.
  • The de-icing feature helps clear the glass from any ice or moisture. This way, you won’t have to scrape off frozen ice on your glass which can lead to scratches on your glass.
  • The bug wash technology is an added bonus as it keeps away insects from thriving in the windshield.
  • The price for a gallon of this washer fluid is quite reasonable.
  • As an added bonus, you can use it to soften any hard gunk on your car’s finish before you take your car to the cleaners. It helps eliminate the dirt effectively.

Cons

  • The fluid has a strong and funky smell which tends to linger in your air conditioner vents.
  • When you use it under 20 degrees Fahrenheit, it has the tendency to instantly freeze which deviates from its selling point of being formulated for antifreeze.

The Rain-X Washer Fluid Additive should be added to your existing washer fluid or water to activate the Rain-X or water beading technology. Just add 4 ounces of this additive with 1 gallon of water or washer fluid. Just make sure that the washer fluid you are using is made for cold temperature. Otherwise, the fluid may freeze.

The Rain-X Washer Fluid Additive can improve the performance of your existing washer fluid. However, as compared to its predecessor, the original wipe-on Rain-X product appears to be more efficient than the fluid additive.

Pros​

  • Once you add this to your washer fluid, you can notice how it enhances your visibility when driving.
  • Its special formulation helps prevent road grime, snow, ice, and bugs from sticking on your windshield.
  • This provides a better cleaning solution and treatment to your glass. It removes the residue more efficiently.
  • The Rain-X technology is mostly effective when you are consistently using the product on your wiper.
  • This product is very easy to use. You can directly mix it with your existing washer fluid.
  • Its formula helps keep your wiper in good condition making it last longer.

Cons

  • The washer fluid additive doesn’t seem to be as effective as the original wipe-on version.
  • Some streaks tend to build up a hazy moisture in the glass.
  • This version may leave water spots on your windshield which are not that easy to remove.

This washer tablet is super concentrated with powerful cleaning ingredients. It comes in a tablet form where each piece can mix create a gallon of cleaner. It is very simple and easy to use. Just add one tablet to one gallon of water and the tablet will be instantly dissolved.

The Instant Windshield Washer Tablet is relatively cheaper compared to most washer fluids. It’s simple to use, convenient, and dissolves easily. However, it lacks anti-freezing capability so it won’t work well in cold climates.

Pros​

  • This fluid is three times stronger than any ordinary washer fluid.
  • The solution helps eliminate bugs and insects as well as dirt and grime thoroughly.
  • This economical solution significantly removes the use of plastic containers making it more environment-friendly.
  • It is made of non-toxic and biodegradable ingredients which can be used safely for rubber and paint.
  • It doesn’t have an expiration date. Just make sure you store it in a dry place.
  • Since it’s small and handy, it is easier to store than bottles of fluid.

Cons

  • If you live in a cold temperature environment, this tablet doesn’t have anti-freezing capabilities. You have to buy a separate anti-freeze solution.
  • It may not instantly remove hard particles such as bird droppings.

The Nextzett Kristall Klar Washer Fluid Concentrate is formulated for safer driving conditions. It is specifically developed for German automobiles and is over 100 times more concentrated than the standard washer fluid. It easily removes road grime and bugs without leaving a smear on the windshield.

Just add a dose of this fluid concentrate to a gallon of water and pour it in the washer fluid tank. One bottle can make 7 gallons of washer fluid.

The Nextzett Kristall Klar Washer Fluid Concentrate works well against eliminating bugs on the windshield and cleans up properly. However, make sure you don’t mix it too strong. Otherwise, you may have to deal with a soapy liquid streak all over your windshield.

Pros

  • The concentrated formula is stronger and more powerful than the regular blue liquid washer fluid.
  • It minimizes the wear and tear of your wipers.
  • Compared to washer tablets, it mixes well with the water and doesn’t leave any residues in the tank. Since it contains water softeners, you can mix it with regular tap water.
  • This inhibits the build-up of minerals in the washer system so that your wiper can function properly.
  • It is ammonia free and safe to use on paint, plastic or rubber parts.
  • The concentrate is made with biodegradable and phosphate-free substances.
  • It has a pleasant citrus scent which is refreshing compared to other fluids with a strong ammonia smell.
  • This concentrate effectively removes bugs and dirt without leaving any smears on the glass.

Cons

  • It doesn’t work in freezing weather and environment.
  • Although it cleans your windshield well, it somehow leaves a messy streak on the car exterior.
  • Make sure you measure the right amount of concentrate before you mix it with water. If the concentrate is too strong, you may end up with a soapy formula.
  • The liquid concentrate may tend to leak.

This washer fluid is a product of BMW and is exclusively available at BMW dealerships. Technically, a pint of this solution can last you up to 8 complete refills in your tank.

The BMW Windshield Washer Fluid is produced by a reputable car manufacturer brand which makes it more appealing to many motorists. However, due to its limited availability, not all consumers are willing to travel all the way and look for a BMW shop just to buy this fluid.

Pros

  • This fluid concentrate is easy to pre-mix with simple instructions and works well with your wiper.
  • Since it is produced by BMW, you can be sure that you are using a good quality and reliable product.
  • The fluid smells nice as opposed to other washer fluids that have a strong smell of ammonia making it more appealing to use.

Cons

  • This product is a bit pricier compared to other washer fluids.
  • It could be better if it was packaged in gallons so that you won’t have to buy separate bottles from time to time.
  • Since it is exclusively sold at BMW dealerships only, it can be inconvenient for some motorists to look for a BMW center near their home. It limits the access to this product.
  • In some regions, it requires a specific mixing instruction, especially for warm climates.

Conclusion

After reviewing the best windshield washer fluid in the market 2017, our recommendation goes to the Prestone All Season Washer Fluid. It clearly does the job of lubricating your washer system to ensure all parts are working well. It is affordable making it easy on the pocket. The solution effectively cleans your windshield from all debris including dirt, grime, droppings, and bugs.​

It is infused with bug wash technology to get rid of insects sticking to your glass. At the same time, it gets rid of streaks to keep your windshield spotless. Compared to other washer fluids, the Prestone All Season Washer Fluid is more efficient making it a great choice to solve your windshield problems.

We often overlook the importance of using windshield washer fluids. Hopefully, this article will help you understand the need and benefits of a washer fluid so that you won’t neglect the purpose of your wiper. Keep in mind, a washer fluid comes in a mixed gallon or a concentrated liquid or tablet form.​

Anthony Ebden
 

He’s an auto blogger. He worked as an auto mechanic for more than 5 years and his mission is to provide our readers with the best car maintenance tips, DIY guides and the most updated trends in the automotive industry.

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