Welcome to the Crown Vics ETC blog!

On April 6, 2000, I purchased a 1998 Ford Crown Victoria LX HPP with 23,490 miles. I decided to start a little website for it featuring a running log of my experiences with the car. Vic 1.0 was retired in 2015 due to rust and electrical issues. Vic 2.0 was a 2006 P71 in Blue Pearl that belonged to my boyfriend. It was a Ford demo and never saw actual police use. It was damaged in September of 2018 with well over 186,000 miles. It was replaced by Vic 3.0 in October 2018, a 2008 P71 in Silver Birch with 120,971 miles. To read posts prior to 2010, click a link at right, or go to Crown Vics, ETC.

Monday, December 9, 2019

130,000 Mile Update: Wipe Those Tears Away...

All through November, Vic 3.0's wipers were acting strange.  They would switch on and off... all on their own!  Sometimes, just the fluid would start squirting, usually as I was driving into the sun.  I figured it was the actual wiper control (part of the turn signal stalk).  But our mechanic, "Taxi Guy", said it was the wiper motor itself.  So first we got hold of a used multi-function wiper/turn signal unit.  A few days later, things got much worse...

While driving along, the wipers once again would go on and off all on their own.  Sometimes for a short time, sometimes long enough that I pulled over to see if they would shut off if I re-started the car.  Long story short, I ended up driving about 20 miles with my brand new Bosch wipers wiping my dry, brand new windshield.  I wasn't happy...

The next day, we got a used wiper motor/rack and I planned on doing the install myself.  After all, I had done it with Vic 1.0 & 2.0, so why not 3.0 as well? 

Curious about what it takes to swap the unit out?  Read on...

The first thing to do is remove the two wiper arms.  This is either a pain in the backside, or no big deal, depending on how picky you are about the paint finish of the arms and the edge of your hood.  You need to raise the arms until you can pry up the release "loop".  Then let the arm down.  It should lay off the glass.  That means you can now gently lift off the arm. 

Now, we need to remove the wiper motor/rack unit:

1) remove the weather seal.  That is simple.

2) remove the two black plastic pins that are located on the corners of the cowl trim/cover.

3) remove Phillips screws from the cover.

4) remove four clips that hold the cover to the assembly "bucket".

5) you can now remove the cowl trim, and see all of the "organic matter" that has built up through the years!

6) use a socket to remove the bolts that hold down the wiper assembly "bucket".

7) there is a part connected to a black metal bracket, which is attached to the "bucket" with two nuts.  This is the EVAP Canister Purge Valve.  Those nuts often rust solid, and some people just break the bracket off.  BUT, there is a very simple way to get around this... press the plastic tab on the purge valve and slide it off the bracket!  It should slide easily, but if not, just use a little WD40.

8) you can now begin to remove the bucket assembly.  You need to disconnect the motor connector and the wiper fluid hoses, which press into little plastic holders molded into the part.  The ends simply press onto the sprayer nozzles.  There may also be a wire-loom or two to remove.

At this point, you can either remove your motor or do what I did, which is go with the whole motor/bucket unit.  Either way, I highly suggest that you make sure the "drainy flappy trap door thing" is clean when you put the new bucket into the car (see photo). 

From this point, you simply reverse the above steps.  The entire job took me two hours, though I was using only hand tools, and spent extra time cleaning up the replacement parts.  I also stopped to observe a baby chipmunk who was stocking up on birdseed... it was the latest in the season I had ever seen a chippy out-and-about.

This is what your wiper motor looks like
Old "bucket", old cowl trim, replacement cowl trim all cleaned up
Replacement motor/rack installed and almost ready to go!
A 11/29/19 chipmunk!