Documenting Wiper Motor Problems - North American Motoring


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Documenting Wiper Motor Problems

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Old 02-09-2007, 12:47 PM
PastorMike PastorMike is offline
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Documenting Wiper Motor Problems

I have searched all over the internet and have not had much luck on the topic of troubleshooting front wiper motor failure on a 2002 MC. The assumption is that if it stops the motor is bad and the fix is a dealer repair of $600-$1000 because of the location of the wiper motor.

My hopes with this thread is to find out if that is the only option, if there are other things to check BEFORE going to the dealer, and to document the process step-by-step.

Please keep comments to a minimum, tech advice to a max, and let's see what we come up with!

So far...

If your front wipers fail the first place to check is the fuse panel located in the engine compartment. There is a great diagram of this at the following thread: FUSE DIAGRAM

The fuse you are looking for is F9 [20 amp]. The best policy is to replace the fuse, as sometimes fuses can look good and not work.

If you replace the fuse and still have no wipers, you should look at the relays. Though relays rarely go bad, it is worth a chech.

There area also two relays that control the wipers: R5 & R7. It is difficult to trouble shoot these unless you are good with a multimeter or want to buy extra relays. However, relay R6 is the same model, part number and specs as R5 & R7. R6 controls one of the light functions (perhaps high beams). You can try swapping R6 with R5 and then R7 to see if the wipers work.

If the wipers work, obviously the relay is bad and you should repalce it. If you keep having problems with the relays going bad there is probably a bigger electrical problam and you should take it to the shop.

If replacing the fuse and swapping relays does not work....

*** that is where there is NO guidance! Is there any other place to check, and place to get a meter on a wire to test if the motor is bad, shoudl you be able to move hte wiper arms, etc... **** Please help me finish this article and the job )
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Old 11-14-2009, 05:45 PM
fx3 fx3 is offline
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I've recently been told that there is a problem with the Body Control Module and a plug to/from it that may play into this problem. My local mechanic could have replaced my wiper motor for all the same reasons you're having but he said the motor was fine, and scared up this supposed service bulletin.
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Old 02-11-2010, 09:57 PM
rzelred rzelred is offline
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Wiper Motor Failure Not

My front wiper quit in the rain. I searched several posts and found a grounding problem with the wiper motor. The fuses were fine. I added a new wire from one of the 3 bolts that secure the wiper motor and connected the other end to a bolt that was screwed into the frame. The wiper motor works fine now. If you want to test your wiper motor use a jumper wire and touch the positive stud at the fuse box and touch a mounting bolt for the wiper motor.
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Old 03-05-2010, 08:40 PM
jpatrician jpatrician is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rzelred View Post
My front wiper quit in the rain. I searched several posts and found a grounding problem with the wiper motor. The fuses were fine. I added a new wire from one of the 3 bolts that secure the wiper motor and connected the other end to a bolt that was screwed into the frame. The wiper motor works fine now. If you want to test your wiper motor use a jumper wire and touch the positive stud at the fuse box and touch a mounting bolt for the wiper motor.
Do you happen to have any pics of this. I've tried everything to get mine to work. I have already replaced the motor, checked the fuses and relays, and really don't want to have to bring this in to Mini.

Thanks in advance!
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Old 03-06-2010, 08:56 AM
rzelred rzelred is offline
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No pics, remove the plastic grill on the drivers side, you will see three bolts securing the wiper motor. I took a 14 guage wire stripped the ends and wrapped one end under the bolt securing wiper motor. The other end was run to a bolt grounded to the frame near the fuse box.

To test the motor secure the wire to the motor bolt and touch the other end to the main positive wire at the side of the fuse box. The wiper should start working.
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Old 03-06-2010, 01:16 PM
jpatrician jpatrician is offline
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Thanks! Fixed mine today!!!!!
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Old 03-21-2010, 02:54 PM
LiquidYellowS2002 LiquidYellowS2002 is offline
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Had the same issue as jpatrician and rzelred after a freak late March snow storm yesterday in the Midwest. Both the test and the fix worked perfectly on my 2002 MCS!
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Old 03-29-2010, 09:18 AM
zigzag930 zigzag930 is offline
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WHAT??? Positive to ground?

I'm confused about rzelred's suggestion on how to test the motor as "to connect a wire at the wiper mounting bolts to the positive lug on the fuse box!!!!"

What am I not understanding? Is your vehicle a positive ground vehicle?
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Old 03-30-2010, 10:53 AM
zigzag930 zigzag930 is offline
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FIXED, but why?

Minutes after a torrential FL downpour, my wipers went out. I performed the gound jumper wire installation as others suggested and presto.... wipers are now working again! Thanks to all.

Now does anyone have any idea how the original system was grounded and why it fails? Is there something that needs to be cleaned or a wire that may be broken?
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Old 06-02-2010, 08:18 AM
tr6drvr tr6drvr is offline
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Letting everyone know I had exactly the same problem of sudden loss of wipers and tried the ground wire trick and they came right back to life. I have no idea why this happens but it works!
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Old 07-25-2010, 06:06 PM
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djmuka djmuka is offline
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Back to life!
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Old 11-29-2010, 03:49 PM
grhone grhone is offline
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Wow! Great fix, saved hundreds of $$$

That fix is perfect - worked for me; took about 10 min max. and the wipers are back to life. They died when my daughter tried to turn them on when they were caked in ice and snow after a flash storm - I thought it would be a big fix b/c the motor burned out or something - checked fuses, all okay; tried this new ground wire fix just as pictured and it worked a treat! Thanks!
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Old 12-15-2010, 10:29 AM
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Curbiecooper Curbiecooper is offline
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Just going to say my dad thought you were all crazy and now he is mind blown that this worked =) lol THANK YOU i would have prolly went and bought a new motor and wasted a lot of money. I am really glad we have this website so that we all can help each =D
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Old 12-15-2010, 07:16 PM
WayMotorWorks WayMotorWorks is online now
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Yes the whole assembly has rubber mounts to keep noise and vibration out of the cabin, so the ground isn't that good.
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Old 12-17-2010, 06:35 PM
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KINGR2R KINGR2R is offline
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Awesome

Eureka,the trick with the extra ground wire works .
Thank you guys , today I saved lots of $$$$$$$$$$$.
Cheers
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Old 04-03-2011, 01:01 PM
wakeslayer wakeslayer is offline
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Great advice and fix !!!

My daughter's wipers failed on her 02 lat week. Check fuse, both relays, relay sockets, etc. Discovered this thread and had it fixed in ten minutes.

Thank you.

PS: Also replaced the A-pillar from PO's poorly replaced windshield. Learned about that issue from this site, too.
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Old 04-03-2011, 03:03 PM
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Crashton Crashton is offline
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That is a wonderfully elegant & easy fix. It should be made a sticky so others can find this info easily.
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Old 11-30-2011, 08:47 PM
eganearl eganearl is offline
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Is the wiper problem connected to others?

My 2002 MCS heater core failed. I had my local mechanic replace it which was very invasive to the dashboard, etc. Within a week thereafter my wipers stopped AND my airbag warning light came on. Too coincidental not to be related I thought!

In another thread about the airbag problem I saw comments about wiring under the seats. Here I read about bypassing wiring to the wiper motor. Any newer guidance would be most welcome.
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Old 11-30-2011, 09:01 PM
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Windshield Wiper and Airbag Light

Run a ground wire from any of the screw which hold the windshield wiper motor to the car chassis and see if your wipers works .To clear the airbag light I bought a B200 BMW srs scan and reset from eBay .Good luck.
Your problem might be a coincidence.
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Old 12-03-2011, 01:06 PM
eganearl eganearl is offline
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Thank you

The ground wire did the trick on the wipers. Now on to the airbag.
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Old 01-14-2012, 12:13 PM
stevenee stevenee is offline
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Wiper Motor Ground Trick

All,

After a pretty serious freeze here in Cookeville, TN , I made the mistake of turning the wipers of my 02' Mini while they were still frozen to my windshield. Low and behold, they stopped working completely. I did some research, and I was scared that I burned out the motor. Nothing I did could get them working again, including thawing out the wiper motor.

However, I stumbled across this forum this afternoon and decided to give the "wiper motor ground" trick a try. I went to the local car audio shop and got approximately 4ft of 14 gauge power wire (for free, mind you - - thanks again to Innovative Audio of Cookeville). I followed the pictures posted in this thread and it WORKED LIKE A CHARM. I couldn't believe it.

I joined this forum just to make this post. THANK YOU TO EVERYONE who posted in this thread to help me solve this problem. I was thoroughly convinced I'd have to spend $500 + to get this thing fixed. Instead, I fixed it for free. To anyone else with intermittent wiper problems, give this mod a try. It's worth the 10 minutes it took to complete.

All the best,

Steve
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Old 02-17-2012, 07:22 AM
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Thanks for the pics. Adding the ground wire worked for me. I did manage to break the tabs when removing the cowl...
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Old 09-28-2012, 06:20 PM
JJGreer JJGreer is offline
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Worked like a charm

Driving home at 70mph when the wipers stopped in the home position.
Checked fuses and relays. Then I found this thread.

Tested by jumping between a good ground and one of the motor bolts. Dang wipers started moving.

Made the jumper permanent and viola!
Thank-you for the sticky!
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Old 10-20-2012, 05:37 PM
Peace Mini Peace Mini is offline
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We were in a rein storm in the Colorado Rockies going back to California and just when we needed the windshield wipers the most they just stopped. All the fuses checked out fine and we made it back to CA without a problem, but this could have been a big problem. Since so many have had this problem, do you know if this is a recall issue?

The fix worked great and it took only about 10 min start to finish and our wipers are now working great again. Thanks
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Old 12-02-2012, 02:12 AM
teknotexan teknotexan is offline
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Simple and effective! After two wet soaked Bay Area days, the wipers on my 02 MCS decided to fail during a rail fallen night commute. After this quick mod, they work like a charm! Thank You!
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