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Windshield wiper blade : replaceable wiping edge?

do they make windshield wiper blades with a permanent bracket part which holds a replaceable rubber wiper edge?

I have been using Bosch Excel+ windshield wiper blades, and I have also tried Michelin, maybe something else, all the same design - the entire assembly is purchased. I have been able to bend the Bosch out enough so the wiper edge comes out, but I have not found a part to replace only the rubber wiper edge inside the perfectly good attachment piece.

I remember seeing them years ago, but not recently. But I’ve always just bought new blades though.

Many auto parts stores do not sell “refills” and force you to buy a new blade. I did find one local auto store that stocks “Trico” refills that you trim to fit the length. They carry 3 styles (narrow, wide, etc.) and I know what to buy and they work fine for me.

I still see the refills sometimes. it was either NAPA or Pep-Boys. not sure about the brands. I bought the re fills once when I was a broke kid with his first car. I didn t have much experience back then,
and not many tools. I just remember that was a pain in the butt. I ve just sprung for the whole assembly since. when I bought my last set of wipers they were pretty expensive, I may look into re-filling them when the time comes. I m back to being broke :slight_smile: .

The national chains seem to be shying away from selling refills (or sometimes they are called “inserts”). I asked an employee at one of these stores, and he said the reason was that DIY customers would buy the inserts but not be able to figure out how to install them correctly, and a big scratch on the window would result. So he said refills became a liability problem for the store.

Not all auto parts stores refuse to sell refills. My local (non-chain) auto parts store offers them for example. The problem you may have is getting a refill that fits the wiper blade assy you already have. If that’s the case, your best bet is to purchase new wiper blade assy’s this time, but make sure the store stocks refills that fits that part. Trico, as mentioned above, is a brand that seems to be happy to offer compatible blade/refill pairs. Maybe buy a couple sets of refills at the same time as you buy the blade assy’s, then you’ll be certain of the refill part number when you need it.

Coincidentally, I had this problem for my 90’s Corolla recently. Refills – I discovered – consist of just three parts, the rubber part, and two metal wires which provide flexibility and mechanic support. I wasn’t able to find refills which fit my existing blade. But I found refills where the rubber part was the same. But the wire part was a different width. So I purchased the refill, used the wire part from the existing blade, with the new rubber part from the refill, and that worked out fine. And saved me quite a few dollars compared to purchasing new blade ass’ys.

The other thing I should mention since I have recent DIY’er experience w/this topic is that I discovered almost by accident that I could purchase the entire blade ass’y at some web parts stores for about the same price of an insert at a local parts store. So it might be worth taking some time to see what some of the web parts stores offer too. Best of luck.

Here’s my observations . . .

The NAPA website lists the blades. Yet, when you go to the store, they look at you funny and tell you they don’t have them, and can’t order them.

I also like the Bosch wiper blades, but they’re not cheap, as you know.

I have found that my local Toyota dealer actually stocks the inserts I need. So I bought a set of factory blades. Next time, I just bought the refills, and it worked out to be very cost effective.

I’ve been trying to figure out when inserts for wiper blades first became available. As I remember, the whole wiper blade was replaced in the cars made before 1970 or so. I do remember buying the inserts for my 1978 Oldsmobile Cutlass, but I don’t think the inserts were available for my 1965 Rambler Classic or my 1971 Ford Maverick.

My OEM Acura wiper blades are like this. It’s a bit inconvenient to replace them, but they seem to use good-quality rubber so that I’m not doing it very often.

I remember having that kind of wipers but now I don’t think you’ll find them because they are quite old fashioned. Anyways you can find other parts of your car in online auto part stores. I recently bought a door mirror for my car from Iautobodyparts store. They gave me the part at amazing price with warranty on them.

There’s too many different manufacturers of blades ( Anco, Trico, Wexco ) that each take a different refill/insert.
Inventory of all the possibilities becomes a nightmare. Then the fight to get the right one to the customer after three tries and then they still can’t make it fit so you have to go out to their car and you end up taking off the whole blade anyway to take it in to your counter to figure it all out because they may have been replace before and not be o.e. anyway…
you may as well sell them whole blade in the first place.

Attempting to replace the rubber insert is not worth the effort. At most McParts stores if you purchase the entire wiper blade they will install it for free and that policy is likely the result of all the lost inventory and lost time and unhappy customers dealing with the inserts.