Question about 1997 Pontiac Sunfire
The problem with your wipers is that your wiper switch is going bad that is one of the signs, they will eventually go all the way out and wont even come on at all, replacing the switch will cure most likely cure your wiper problem.
Posted on Jan 02, 2011
The parking pawl has gotten stuck. It is a 1.25"
long piece of metal that pivots on one end and is free swinging using
gravity and centrifugal force. It is external to the motor and is
exposed as part of the Stack-O-Plates that is on the output shaft of the
motor and to which the wiper push rods are attached. When you turn the
wipers off the motor will reverse direction and the pawl will swing
outward using gravity and centrifugal force where it can jamb against a
stationary tab mounted on the motor/wiper frame. This will allow the
parking Stack-O-Plates-and-Spring gizmo to do their magic which puts the
wiper arms in the parking position. If the pawl never swings out and
engages the stationary tab then the wipers will swing through half a
swing at which point a cam/switch that is internal to the pulse board
(the cover on the motor output gear, three T20 Torx screws to remove) will tell the motor to stop because it thinks the wipers are nicely parked but instead the wiper arms will be stuck in the "Hello, I'm a dork" raised flag position.
If you can't see the pawl, you can feel for it around the edges of the motor output Stack-O-Plates. You can spray a light lubricant like WD-40 on it and wiggle it to get it to swing freely again. Do not use heavy oils or grease because the tab relies on gravity to swing and must move very freely to move to the outward parking position.
WARNING: Use caution while working around the wiper mechanism. If the key is on and the wiper lever is set to "Intermediate" then the motor can start unexpectedly. If your fingers are down there in the wrong place, the mechanism has more than enough power to break bones and/or peal the skin right off of them. Don't be afraid, just be deliberate and methodical and always be aware if the motor/electronics are energized.
It is very easy to remove the motor/wiper assembly so do not hesitate to do so. It is much easier to see what you are doing and confirm that this parking pawl is clean and free swinging. If the wiring harness is long enough then confirm that the mechanism is working after cleaning before reinstalling the motor/wiper assembly. Make sure you test the unit in approximately the same position as it would be when installed because the pawl relies on gravity to swing into position.
Unfortunately, my parking pawl was worn enough that I could not get it to reliably swing out just using gravity even after thoroughly cleaning and lubing with Deep Clean (like WD-40) spray. I had to add a small loop of a spring (like from a retractable ball point pen but bigger) around the end of the pawl to hold it in the "swung out" position. When the motor runs in the forward direction the pawl harmlessly swings out of the way when it passes by the stationary tab. I put one loop of spring around one tab on the end of the arm and around one tab of the clip that limits the swing of the arm. The loop of spring applies very light pressure but that is all it needs. I will try and post pictures of all this.
If you remove the Stack-O-Plates assembly from the motor output shaft (T30 Torx) to access the pawl to put a spring on like I had to then you will need to remount the assembly in the properly timed position. Leave the output plates and arms unmounted from the motor output shaft, plug the motor in, then turn the wipers to "Intermediate". When the motor stops then turn off the ignition switch or quickly disconnect the motor. The motor is now in the correct position. Remount the Stack-O-Plates so there is about 1/4" to 1" space between the pawl and the stationary tab. Test the unit to see if it reliably does all its parking gyrations then remount the motor arm assembly. Test it again a number of times before you put the cowl cover and wipers arms back on. You are now done. Try not to wear out the wipers by constantly turning them on and off for the next few hours of driving just so you can marvel at your handy work. :O)
Buy the way, if you turn the wipers off and they just wiggle a little bit while the motor goes ****-****-****-**** trying to do its parking thing then you need to alter (slightly) the relationship between the cam/switch arm inside the pulse module (again, the cover on the motor output gear, three T20 Torx screws to remove). There are two switch/contact arms in the center of the pulse board. The one closest to the board that engages the plastic cam mounted to the board is the one you want to change slightly. The other free floating arm is driven by the cam on the big motor output gear and is the contact to let the electronics know the output gear has rotated half a turn and the wipers are now parked. I bent the one arm closest to the pulse board away from its cam just slightly so that only about 3/4 of the "hook" on the end of the arm (you will know what I mean when you look at it) is hitting the ramp on the cam (the cam spins clockwise). Verify that the electrical contact actually opens a bit when the arm is riding on the high part of the cam. You may have to adjust and verify a number of times to find that sweet spot where it runs reliably. It took me half an hour of fiddling. O_0
Posted on May 23, 2011
Bill J will you do mine?
Posted on Apr 19, 2014
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Posted on Jan 02, 2017
This has happened a couple of times on my 1999 Pontiac Montana. Here's what I did to fix. Open the hood. Remove the shield over the the wiper cam mechanism on the passengers side. This is easy to access. Road salts and other dust and dirt gets in there and causes the sticking problem. Spray WD-40 in between the parts. Get in there with that little red spray straw and saturate it good, flush junk out. Get in the car and try the wipers. If I remember, you might have to manually place that little knob or lever on top of the cam in the opposite position to get it to resync, but try it first. Be sure the wipers are off when you're spraying the WD-40 so you don't injur your hands. I've had to do this twice and it worked both times.
Posted on Jan 16, 2009
SOURCE: Windshield wiper problem
check the wiper arms first take off the end caps loosen bolts and adjust then tighten then try again please rate my response thank you very much
Posted on Feb 01, 2009
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