The wiper blade is the primary piece of your windshield wiper. The wiper blade is almost always made of a rubber material, and is what comes into direct contact with your windshield. If you are looking for a wiper blade that will last, look for one that utilized different types of rubber or rubber compounds. Rubber infused with different materials or coated with different materials will offer more strength and resistance to harsh weather conditions. Keep in mind that your car’s wiper blades are constantly exposed to the elements. Heat, cold and the outside air can cause your blades to deteriorate. Over time, the blade will begin to crack and tear; this is unavoidable. However, buying a good blade with excellent rubber material can extend the life of your blade.
There are three blade types you should consider: conventional, beam and hybrid.
Conventional blades have a cross-section metal frame and a thin rubber strip. They are always straight in design, and are fairly effective at pushing material off the windshield. However, many new cars come with windshields that have a curvature to them. There are several reasons for this, including limiting wind drag. However, this necessitates using a windshield wiper that can better conform to the shape. Traditional windshield wipers are typically very rigid and not good at conforming to the curved shapes. They will more often get stuck to the windshield during snow and ice events as well.
Beam blades have a distinct curve in the middle. This design helps them better conform to different windshield shapes, and helps to prevent sticking during snow and ice. You will find that the beam design also lasts longer. However, beam designs are often louder than conventional wipers if no attention is taken to prevent his. Beam blades also do away with the criss-crossing metal frame that conventional blades use for support. Instead, they utilize a flexible steel beam internally.
Hybrid wiper designs combine features of both. They are often mostly straight with a slight curve, and use a modified frame. You will find that they are often quieter than beam blades, but more effective than conventional blades.