We actually still like to go RVing in the winter, so back in September, I set out to buy some new wiper blades for Das Bus. I did research online, checked Amazon reviews, and visited manufacturers websites determined to get “the best” wiper blades I could. I needed the best, I reasoned, because I’m extremely OCD, and looking through streaks drives me absolutely batty. That, and almost any review or manufacturer will tell you that “Top Quality Blades are a Must”, so I was sure I was doing the right thing.
Armed with all my research, I bought a set of “WipeMaster Ultra, Teflon Coated, Dura Flex, Whatever Beam blades with triple squeegee action and rubber booties”. On Das Bus, the tab for these came to $42. Woo Hoo! I was on my way to wiping nirvana.
I put them on Das Bus, and, when all was said and done, they worked OK. But let’s face it, they’re just wiper blades. I mean, they didn’t suddenly give me Eagle Vision or anything like that. But OK. Nice.
Or so I thought, until two months later. The silly rubber booties on the wiper blades got stuck in ice and ripped. It’s as if the protective booties needed protective booties. It looked so awful I had to rip them off.
A week after that, I got the first persistent streak, and the annoying RRRRRRRRRRRRKKKKKKKKK with every swipe of the blades. I got about 9 or 10 weeks out of the “WipeMaster Ultra whatever whatever”. That’s about $4.20 a week, or 60 cents a day. But then you consider that this is an RV, and we used it only a few times in those weeks, and it wasn’t snowing or raining all of those days. So when you break it down another way, I paid maybe 70 cents PER WIPE for those blades.
Annoyed, I went to the auto parts store and bought the absolute cheapest blades they had. Total cost: ten bucks. I put them on Das Bus, and, when all was said and done, they worked OK. But let’s face it, they’re just wiper blades. I mean, they didn’t suddenly give me Eagle Vision or anything like that. But OK. Nice.
Wait a minute – that’s the same thing I said about the “WipeMaster Ultras”!
Two months later, I realized that the only REAL difference between expensive wiper blades and cheap wiper blades is how much of a chump you feel like two months later when they crud out on you. This is especially true on an RV, where they’re much more likely to fail from UV exposure than from wear (unless you’re lucky enough to keep your RV indoors – and I’m working on that…).
Anyway, to help you in your next trip to Auto Zone to buy wiper blades, I’ve put together the following graph which, depending on how much you spend on wiper blades, attempts to show how much of a chump you’ll feel like in two months when those wiper blades fail. Just decide how much of a chump you want to feel like, and buy appropriately priced wiper blades.
Me – I’m off the charts on the right somewhere. But I’m learning…