Wiper Linkage Replacement-VW
How to remove and replace the wiper arm linkage on a mk5 and newer VW
My wipers have been out of whack since I bought this old 2006 Jetta TDI so after doing several other repairs thanks to the folks on this forum I decided to have a go at removing and replacing the Windshield Wiper Linkage. At first I thought the problem was that the nut holding the passenger side wiper was loose, so I tried to tighten it:
It "turns out" that the nut was the absolute wrong size and when I tried to tighten it it snapped the sucker right off. So I bought a replacement wiper linkage from IDparts and set to work.
I couldn't find a whole lot about the Mk5 linkage, but it seemed pretty straightforward.
Editors note: this article was originally by Jokevalues, for support on this article please post in this forum thread.
Parts and tools
13mm socket (and maybe a 10mm socket)
T30 Torx bit
Something flat (preferably plastic) with which to pry the plastic dust
Pay attention when you take anything apart so you can put it back together again.
The plastic covers on the wiper arms were long since gone on my car, but if you've still got them, pry them off first. It might also be a good idea to hit the nuts with some liquid wrench/PB Blaster/WD-40 to assist with their removal if you're having difficulty. You will want to open the hood to get a good look at the wiper arms.
Next remove the 13mm nuts from the bottom of the wiper arms/top of the linkage. You may have some trouble with these as I did. After you get the nuts off you'll have to remove the wiper arms, which can be tough. Bend the spring on the wiper arms (as if you were lifting them to clean the windshield) to release some tension from between the arm and linkage. If you really can't get them off you can buy a tool to remove the wipers, or rent a jaw puller from a local auto parts store, but they came off pretty easily for me.
After you get them off you have to remove the plastic dust cover. I think there's supposed to be a rubber part at the bottom of the cover you have to remove before the rest of the dust cover (mine was gone). Be careful because old plastic breaks and there's not much between the plastic and the glass. I'd recommend using something plastic to get it started. It doesn't take much pressure.If you have to use a pry bar or something metal try to use a rag between it and the windshield to prevent cracking. I used an old ice scraper to get it started.
Spread the cover off slowly and pull it out, not down, so it doesn't catch and break.
Once you get it off you'll be able to see the linkage and the motor.
Two T30 torx screws hold the linkage/wiper motor to the car. The mk6 and other models use 3x 10mm bolts (I think). You'll have to disconnect the Wiper motor's connector. It just snaps on and off. Again, be careful of old dry plastic and try not to crack anything.
After you get the linkage disengaged you can try to jiggle it out. I had to remove the two 10mm bolts holding the passenger side of the linkage to the chassis to get enough clearance.
Here's one of the 10mm bolts to the left of the T30 screw. That half rusted piece of metal came off to give me enough clearance to get in and out.
After you get this sucker (with the motor) out of the vehicle there's 3 x T30 Torx screws holding the wiper motor to the linkage.
I took those off and there was one more 13mm nut connecting the linkage to the motor's moving part. I had to remove it to get the new mount and linkage connected to the motor.
The rest is the reverse of the removal. The linkage had two indentations for the motor/mount that you can't miss so that you can get the spacing exactly right. Most of the pieces of the linkage snap together if they're not already connected, just pay attention when you take it apart and match the old pieces and the new pieces.
I had to play around with the wipers briefly to get everything lined up, but once I tightened the nuts on top everything was pretty easy.
I was able to remove and replace just the linkage during my lunch break and everything takes me twice as long as it probably should (and I took pictures). Another few minutes to connect the wipers and get them timed up correctly.
If anyone knows the torque specs for any parts of this job I'd be so happy to hear them. I just did a quick hand tighten on most everything I touched.