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Discussion Starter #1
Hi Chaps/Chapesses!,
having been an Mg/Merc man for over 20yrs, finally got round to an Alfa Spider. So now having to learn everything from scratch. Problem; my wipers work, albeit very slowly. Can anyone advise me whether the motor is dying, needs lubricating somewhere, other???
Would appreciate any advice/help with this, particularly since the weather in Ireland means that wipers are prob the most essential bit of kit!!! Thanks. By the way, it's a 1992 series 4.
 

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alfa spider wipers are generally not that quick, but if you feel they are too slow then you have a motor or seizing linkage problem...with luck it might just be linkages seizing up which you can try to oil.
to get at these you need to remove front cowl.

Firstly though, click wipers off the windshield, operate them and see if they run much faster that way as there is no pressure on them. If so you might just have a sticky screen or the wiper arm springs are too strong (possible if someone has replaced the arms with non alfa ones)

Taking off the front cowl (the metal panel just in front of the windscreen) is a fairly easy job and useful job in any case as you can then waxoil in that area and protect it for winter, take out any leaves and check that it is draining properly (important)!

Removal:
Remove wiper arms - before you do, mentally make a note of their stationary position so they go back the in the exact same position (or put a mark on the screen along the top edge of wiper blade with a crayon or a piece of masking tape, exactly where the wipers are sitting)

You need to remove 2 screws in left and right corner of lower windscreen chrome strip.
gently pull off/slide forwards chrome strip (held on with clips, they are usually rusty, dont force them and good time to clean and waxoil these too! they are available somewhere if you break one)- keep the corner rubber seals safe. These 2 screw holes at the corner of the screen/body always start to rust, check and waxoil these!
open bonnet and you will see screws holding the front edge of the cowl to the rear drain channel there where the bonnet seal is - loosen these, the cowl should slide up and off the screws.
the metal cowl should now lift off with the windscreen washers connected, there is some movement here as the pipes are long enough, so leave these connected and put it aside on a cloth in the engine compartment somewhere. If you have to remove the pipes a gentle warm with a cigarette lighter allows them to be removed much easier than pulling and breaking the plastic nozzles!

Now you have acess to wiper motor and linkages.
check linkages visually, spray these with something like you would use to release a rusty bolt (rust release or brake cleaner!), whilst the wipers are "running" and see if there is a change to the speed of the whirring....if so that is the problem (or at least part!). dry off and then apply a light grease or oil till you are happy.
If it is not the linkages, then the motor winding might be giving up the ghost.
 

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It can be both the motor and/or the wiper rods. Start by removing the panel in front of the wind scream. I would then see how many strokes the wipers do in say 15 sec. Then clean and lubricate the rods joins and time again. If the number of strokes has increased, you are OK. Otherwise it's the motor. I don't know if it can be repaired but I'll give it a try as it's rather expensive at €300+
Erik
 

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Is everything else electrical working as well as it should? The voltage will make a difference if the alternator isn't putting out what it should, but you would notice that with slow electric wiindows, heater fan etc.
Also, it will be worth cleaning up the electrical contacts to the motor, check where it earths and clean that too.
 

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yes, good tip, check wiper motor ground as anglospider says. Alfa even put 2 grounds on some motors, as they knew their wiper motors were generally lazy!

slow electric windows and heater blower? I thought this was standard equipment on our spiders:)
 

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On my car the fasrter wiping speed is acrtually the middle switch position - might be worth checking if what you think is the fast wiper speed setting is actually the slow one.
 

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It's probably wrongly connected, my wipers are first slow and second (ehm) fast, but my fan is first fast second slow (and it's even got a warning light, a first in more than 100 cars I have driven/owned)
Erik
 

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hard to see how they can be rewired wrong since a terminal block connector only fits the one way on both wiper stalk wiring loom and heater blower switch connection...........perhaps a PO has been up to some tricks there or the wires have been inserted into the wiring block in the wrong order?!
The S4 heater switch warning light sort of "glows" on first speed and lights up on fast speed on my S4. The first speed is controlled by a resistor at the motor itself and is all but useless.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Thanks all!!!!

Thanks to everyone for their help and advice. Been away a lot, so car not had much use, also, due to leaky hard-top i try not to use in the wet. Wipers still slow, but working. Thanks everyone!
 
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