Car Guides

My windshield-wiper fluid doesn’t squirt. What could be the problem?

Sometimes, windshield wipers don't stop where they ought to. Flickr / State Farm

Why can’t I get the washers to squirt?

Q. I have an old truck, and I can’t get the wiper fluid to squirt. I’ve checked the pump and tried replacing it with a used one, but it still won’t work. The hoses and switch all work, but the pump makes noise. Why can’t I get the washers to squirt?

A. This is a simple system: a switched circuit, a pump, and some hoses. You should start by making sure the hoses and nozzles are clear. Then test the pump. It needs to make noise and have the ability to pull fluid from the reservoir, then push it to the washer nozzles. If all else fails, you can easily purchase a universal washer pump or an entire kit that includes the fluid reservoir. Look for one online or at a quality auto parts store.


John Paul is AAA Northeast’s Car Doctor. He has over 40 years of experience in the automotive business and is an ASE certified master technician. Email your car question to [email protected]