2008 Ford Focus with only 10,000 miles. Wipers ice up very quickly and even in light rain fail to clear window adequately. The defrost (even at highest heat setting and full blower) frequently leaves icey mush along bottom of the windshield.
Do I need new wipers already? Is this a defroster problem? or both wipers and defrost.
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There may be a relay under the hood.
Be advised, many cars & trucks, in particular Ford, had problems with wiper motors and window winder motors. I had thought their problems were remedied by 2011, but perhaps not.
If you cannot get this fixed quickly, try the "Rain-ex" products, those will keep you windshield clear until you get the wipers working.
God bless your efforts.
If the ice buildup was severe enough and you tried to run your wipers while they were frozen in place, the wiper transmission has probably failed, slipped a joint and now the motor will turn but it will not turn the wiper arms. You will have to open up the wiper panel and visually check to see what part has failed in that wiper transmission.
You can usually avoid that by using a good quality winter mix washer fluid that resists freezing, making sure the wipers are cleared of ice before beginning the drive and using the defroster to keep the windshield warm. In extreme conditions you just need to pull over and manually clean the ice off by hand.(only do that where it's safe). There are also specially designed wiper blades that will also help a bit.
The only thing that might help some with that is to keep your defrost vents on high to keep the windshield warm. There is not much else you can do to stop the wipers from freezing up in inclement winter weather.
If the wipers were buried under snow/ice or frozen to the windshield, you may have blown the red 10 amp fuse located in cavity 9 in the fuse block located on the bottom left side of the instrument panel near the parking brake pedal. In order of easiest to check: 1) ensure wipers not frozen to windshield. 2) ensure wiper arms are not loose on the pivot stud, 3) check the red 10 amp fuse. You stated that "you can hear the motor". Which motor do you hear? The engine or the wiper motor? If you hear the wiper motor, then the fuse is alright. Try 1) and 2) above. PT Stanley