Caltrans Engineering Innovation

Windshield Wiper Strut

To help solve a costly and reoccurring problem with windshield wiper system failures on plow trucks in the Sierras, the DOE Engineering Design Department has come up with an innovative solution, the Caltrans windshield wiper strut.  The Windshield Wiper Strut acts as a suspension system that allows the windshield wipers to keep functioning in the event of snow build up on the windshield and cowl area. The strut works by extending out and allowing the windshield wiper motor to keep functioning properly, when the wiper blades contact an unmovable obstruction of snow and ice in their path.

After building and testing a functioning prototype in 2006, Caltrans worked with a vendor to come up with a more streamlined lighter weight production unit.  Over the past two snow seasons the Windshield Wiper Struts have performed very well, preventing numerous wiper system failures and saving crucial tax payer dollars. Caltrans plans to retrofit all makes and models of trucks affected by wiper system failures with the strut, but currently applications include International 2574 and 2674 model trucks.

For more information contact:
     Caltrans Engineering Design
     Attn: Jeremy Johnson or Angela Wheeler
     P.O Box 160048
     Sacramento, Ca 95816-0048
     916-227-0977 fax

Spring Housing - Prototype Diagram (PDF format)