::: Improving Your Corrado's Windscreen Wipers :::
Anyone who owns a Corrado will know quite how useless the standard wipers are at clearing water from the windscreen!
It appears that VW ran out of development enthusiasm when it came to boring things like the wipers (and headlights for that matter). All is not lost however, as there are a couple of things that can be done to improve matters. The first is obviously to not drive your car in the rain. In the UK however that isn't really an option as it rains for about 50% of the year.
You will be pleased to know that there are a couple of more practical fixes which we will explain over the next few paragraphs.
Firstly it helps to understand why the wipers don't work. If you have driven a Corrado you will know that they work OK (but not great) at slow speeds but above about 60mph they lift off the windscreen. Firstly, this is because the spring within the wiper arms is not strong enough to hold the arms against the windscreen when there is a lot of airflow over the screen.
Secondly, there are two metal lugs within the arms that "bottom out" and prevent the arm getting as close to the screen as it ought to be, even when there is no airflow over the screen. There are two solutions, the first is quite expensive but far more effective than the second, although as the second is completely free it is worth a go. We will attempt to explain both.
:: Lupo (Euro)
Wiper Conversion -
The first and most effective solution is to bin the existing wiper arms and blades and replace them with better ones. Conveniently, wiper arms from the Lupo GTi are a direct swap and these use stronger springs to force the wipers onto the screen. Unfortunately the arms are dealer-only parts and so are a bit on the expensive side.
The parts you need are as follows and they will probably need to be ordered-in:
2 Drivers' side windscreen wiper arms and blades off VW Lupo GTi - Part number: 6X2 998 406 [NOTE - the parts-guy may have to type this straight in to the system rather than navigating from car-view]
The blades come with the arms and cost £20.40 each so the total cost is £40.80 (inc VAT). Please note that VW have changed the part number for these parts on numerous occasions in the last few years so as of Mid 2005 the above number is correct but it would be worth describing the part when ordering so you are sure to get the correct one.
TIP: Ensure that you get 2 drivers' side arms. If you use a passenger side arm and drivers' side arm, the passenger side arm will foul the bonnet when you lift the arm away from the windscreen.
Once you have got the parts, all you need is a 13mm socket, a flat blade screwdriver and ten minutes. Lift the bonnet and prise the plastic cover off the top of each of the wiper spindles and undo the 13mm nuts that hold the arms to the spindles.
Discard the old arms and blades and then refit the Lupo items in place of the originals and replace the plastic spindle covers. It is prudent to clean up the splines on the wiper spindles before attaching the new arms. This ensures that the arms get a good purchase and do not round off the spindle splines when the wipers are in use.
You may find that it takes a few attempts to line the arms up properly so that they sit nice and flat... But then - Hey presto, wipers that work without too much time and effort.
[With a bit of time and care the wipers sit good and flat]
You might notice that the drivers' side blade wipes very close to the roof. If this bothers you, then you can use a passenger side blade on the drivers' side arm which, although the same length as the drivers' side blade, sits about an inch lower on the arm (see photo). It is not necessary but does make a slight difference and we would recommend it.
It also means that you are left with a spare blade for the passenger side so the surplus blade is not wasted. The blades are available off the shelf from either GSF or VW under part number 1J2 955 425A and are £12.87 (inc VAT, VAG price).
[ passenger blade fitted to driver's side, note lack of clearance
with driver's blade - held in hand ]
As well as improving the performance of the windscreen wipers, the Lupo items look much smarter than the clumsy standard wipers and so the conversion has some aesthetic plus points as well.
As a general note, some people have reported that the Lupo blades do not last as long as one would expect (bearing in mind their £12.87 price tag) and it has been suggested that this is a result of the concentration of screen wash being used. Excessive quantities of screen wash do not, it would seem, do kind things for the blades
:: Modification of Existing Corrado Wiper Arms
If the thought of lining your local stealers' coffers to the tune of over £40 for a couple of wiper arms fills you with horror then you might want to try the following mod. It's free, and if it doesn't work then you can always go down the Lupo Wiper route (as above).
Responses from people who have tried this have been mixed, with some saying it works very well and others saying it made no difference. You essentially shorten a couple of stops within the wiper arms to allow the arm to sit closer to the windscreen. the snag of course is that if the wiper arm spring is too weak then it still won't hold the blade on the screen at speed; and with most Corrados getting on a bit now the wiper arm springs are often a bit past it.
Thus if your springs are a bit tired, on older cars in particular, this mod probably won't make a vast difference. If you find this to be the case, you could of course buy some new standard Corrado wiper arms complete with new springs. We would, however, suggest that your money is better spent on the Lupo set up, even though it would work out a bit more expensive.
Raise the bonnet and prise the plastic wiper spindle covers off with a flat blade screwdriver. Undo the 13mm nuts that hold the wiper arms in place and remove the wiper arms.
Starting with the drivers' side arm, fold the hinge back on itself thus opening the underside of the arm. You will see two metal lugs that act as a stop when the arm is in the straight position. They are part of the spindle end of the arm and stop up against the long wiper blade end of the arm (see photo). All you need to do is file these stops down slightly with a Dremel or needle file. Repeat this process for the passenger side.
[remove material where indicated ]
Once you have removed enough material (a couple of mm), refit the wiper arms to your car and give them a test. They should certainly be a bit better at low speed but possibly not much better at high speed. However, some people swear by this mod so you will just have to suck it and see…..it is free after all!
We would recommend you set aside 1 hour for this task!
Disclaimer : Matey-Matey accept no responsibility for any of the information contained within this document or the accuracy thereof. It is intended as a helpful guide and is solely based on personal experience. The authors also wish to stress that the methods highlighted are centred around personal opinion and there may be other equally credible ways of performing this conversion.