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Volkswagen Rabbit, Jetta, Scirocco, Convertible: 1975-1984 (A1) Windshield washer trouble


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Last Post: Feb 19, 2014 9:28 PM Last Post By: MDeath
MDeath

Posts: 101
Registered: 06/17/05
Windshield washer trouble
Posted: Feb 7, 2014 7:42 PM
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82 Jetta - first the fluid stopped sqiuirting, but the wipers engaged, now when I pull the lever absolutely nothing happens. Any suggestions?

thanks,
MD

p.s. Thomas et. al. - got all the other issues working, thanks SO much for your help!
MDeath

Posts: 101
Registered: 06/17/05
Re: Windshield washer trouble
Posted: Feb 10, 2014 3:20 PM   in response to: MDeath in response to: MDeath
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well, got the wipers to engage but still no fluis...I think the pump is dead.
tcovenant2000

Posts: 1,750
Registered: 12/09/03
Re: Windshield washer trouble
Posted: Feb 10, 2014 10:13 PM   in response to: MDeath in response to: MDeath
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I doubt the pump is dead.
The switch gets dirty. Spraying with contact cleaner and buffing with emery cloth often helps.

For the pump, you have to do some tests as follows:
Get a voltmeter and a friend.
1. )Put the - of meter on battery - term. Put plus on the + of the pump (push the lead into the connector until you touch metal). Have friend operate wiper by holding for several seconds. If the voltage is <11V then the switch is dirty or you have a connection problem. If 11 or more then:
2. )Put - of meter on battery - terminal. Put + of meter on - of pump (again pushing the lead in). Have friend operate pump. If the voltage on the meter is <.5V, and step 1 was 11V or more, then you can safely say the pump is probably bad. You can pull the pump and use jumpers from the battery to test it out of the car to be certain. If the voltage on the meter is .5V or higher then the pump ground is dirty. Clean it up and all should be well. Don't discount the engine to frame or battery to engine grounds as possibly being the source as well.

The above tests MUST be done with the pump connected. If there isn't a load, the tests will pass no matter how dirty the connections are.

Thomas

MDeath

Posts: 101
Registered: 06/17/05
Re: Windshield washer trouble
Posted: Feb 10, 2014 11:13 PM   in response to: tcovenant2000 in response to: tcovenant2000
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I take it you mean the switch in the steering collumn, right? Can I use PB Blaster or find actual contact cleaner? I think I can sneak some from work. I can try the switch cleaning first and pray it works. If not I'll have to get it to the shop for the rest. My landlord is on me bad about doing even the simplest work on the cars here at home; he says it's "insurance issue". Make sense, not. It sucks when you can't even do the simplest things yourself.
tcovenant2000

Posts: 1,750
Registered: 12/09/03
Re: Windshield washer trouble
Posted: Feb 11, 2014 6:23 PM   in response to: MDeath in response to: MDeath
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Yes. The column switch is what I meant. In my '84 I relayed the pump and wipers to take the load off of the switch. I wouldn't use PB blaster. You need contact cleaner.
Do you know for a fact the pump isn't running? Even with somewhat low voltage it ought to run a bit, if slowly. Possibly you have clogged lines?
If your landlord won't let you do the work, take it to a public parking lot and do the tests there...or at work.

Thomas
MDeath

Posts: 101
Registered: 06/17/05
Re: Windshield washer trouble
Posted: Feb 11, 2014 6:40 PM   in response to: tcovenant2000 in response to: tcovenant2000
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Yeh, I found out there's some actual contact cleaner at work so I'll try that tomorrow. Also I will try to check for clogged lines and nozzle.
Sometimes I try at public lots, but someone always shows up to hassle me or be too nosey - I guess I just don't fit the profile of someone that does their own work. Being a novelty act for strangers gets old real quick. My boss even makes snide remarks to my face while wearing a big ole smile. He says he can't see why anyone would drive a " hundred year old car". All I mean to say is, things that seem like a simple common act to a lot of folks is a concerted effort for me. It doesn't stop me, it just makes it take longer.

I'll try the contact cleaner tomorrow at lunch time and post back with the results.

Thanks, Our Thomas...
MDeath

Posts: 101
Registered: 06/17/05
Re: Windshield washer trouble
Posted: Feb 18, 2014 4:11 PM   in response to: MDeath in response to: MDeath
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sorry for the delay - we had a slight blizzard going for a bit. well...the good news is the contact cleaner worked at getting the switch going. I now have wipers as I should, but still no fluid. I checked the lines and they do not seem clogged. They are clear so you can see what's in. I will try to pry the jet nozzle off and soak it in some CLR. This guy told me it worked for his same issue. I hope it works for me, if not, I 'll have to maybe chat up the guy at advance auto into helping me test the pump contacts like you said. I'll post back up and let you know...

Edited by: MDeath on Feb 18, 2014 4:12 PM
tcovenant2000

Posts: 1,750
Registered: 12/09/03
Re: Windshield washer trouble
Posted: Feb 18, 2014 5:20 PM   in response to: MDeath in response to: MDeath
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Well...the easiest thing to do is to have someone operate the washer (engine off) while you listen with the hood up. If the pump is running you'll hear it. If so, disconnect the out line and see if it sprays at the pump. If not, the clog is in the inlet side.
If no pump running then do the voltage checks.
Thomas
MDeath

Posts: 101
Registered: 06/17/05
Re: Windshield washer trouble
Posted: Feb 19, 2014 9:28 PM   in response to: tcovenant2000 in response to: tcovenant2000
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I am happy to say that I now have windshield washers again! It was the switch and a clogged nozzle. I did not end up prying it off but ended up drowning it in white vinegar. It was like a science experiment! One of the guys from work gave me an old top from an aerosol can We cut a hole in the top and the goobered a bunch of grease around the bottom and stuck that over the nozzle. Then we poured in the white vinegar. There was a volcano of foam but it took a long time before it started to leak. .The foam lasted for about three minutes or so, then we let it sit for another five minutes. Popped of the cap and doused the area with cold water for about two minutes. I had to "pump" the switch for a bit but then the washers worked! So much fun! It left a nastey taste in my mouth though. Rinsed itout with a little Guinness.

Thank you, Our Thomas. You always stick with us and help us through!

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