Wiper blades tested: windscreen wipers product test

Testing wiper blades
11 Mar, 2016 11:30am Kim Adams

The best replacement wiper blades from Bosch, Michelin and budget brands reviewed

Worn-out or wonky windscreen wiper blades are not just an irritation, they can be dangerous too.

The persistantly annoying squeak of an old wiper blade is one thing, but when those old blades start to compromise bad weather vision by failing to clear the windscreen effectively - you've already waited far too long to change them!

Sadly, most motorists don't think about replacement wipers until an MoT tester slaps a fail notice on their car, but it doesn't have to be that way. Replacement windscreen wipers from premium brands like Bosch and Michelin are easy to find online or from accessory shops, and there are plenty of cheap wiper replacement options out there too.

Whichever you choose, they're all a piece of cake to fit, and as technology has come a long way in recent times there's no reason why anyone with a modern car should have to stick with the old 'coathanger' style of windscreen wiper.

Flat wipers have long been the answer. Their internal steel shafts push the blade against the screen for much greater efficiency, and they can be retro-fitted to most cars with conventional designs.

They’ve now been joined by Michelin’s Stealth hybrid blade – with its blend of flat blade aerodynamics and conventional frame flexibility, it shows where wiper blade tech could go in the future. But which is the best performer day to day?

How we tested them

We looked for a clean wipe with no missed areas or lines at motorway speeds. Also key was quiet running, which we assessed on a dry screen. None squeaked or juddered. To avoid fitting costs, we wanted good instructions, easy installation and just one adaptor in the pack for our Skoda Octavia test car. Price was the final factor – we quote online prices – although this played a fairly minor role.

Verdict

Standards were high, but Bosch wins again due to its superb wiping and easy fitting. Wiper Blades’ own brand is our budget pick, while we love the Michelin’s tech and it performs well.

1. Bosch Aerotwin
2. Wiper Blades Aerowiper
3. Michelin Stealth