Saturday, February 02, 2008

Replacing the washer jets on a Jaguar XJ40

Replacing the washer jets on a 1990 Jaguar XJ40 is a fairly simple job if you know how to use a screwdriver, have some patience, and a bit of strength. For the job, you will need a 17mm wrench and a set of Torx screwdrivers. At the time of this repair, the dealership was able to special order replacement washer jets for approximately $70 each. However, a good used jet can be acquired for $20-40 through an establishment such as North Coast Exotics in Cleveland, Ohio. It is also recommended that you purchase the plastic piece designed to cover the washer jet. Otherwise, it is very easy to accidentally knock off the snap-fitted spray nozzle when scraping snow and ice off the windshield. A pair of these can be special ordered from the dealership for $8.

The job can be divided into the following steps:

  1. Open the hood of the vehicle.

  2. Remove the plastic cover from the bottom of the windshield wiper. Do not pry with a screw driver. Simply pull the cover toward the right hand side of the car. You may need to lift up and out at the same time.

  3. Remove the 17 mm nut which holds the wiper arm to the wiper transmission bolt.

  4. Remove the wiper arm.

  5. Remove the five torx screws which hold the plastic cover to the bottom of the windshield.

  6. Raise the plastic cowl a few inches from the windshield and turn over toward the front of the car. Note that the washer jets are still connected to the cowl at this point.

  7. Disconnect the electrical connectors for each washer jet. Be careful not to break the plastic tabs on either side.

  8. Disconnect the plastic water hose from each washer jet. This may prove to be the most difficult part of the job. You will need both strength and perseverance. After completing this step, the plastic cowel is completely separated from the car.

  9. Locate the base of the washer jet on the bottom side of the cowl.

  10. Press the washer jet's plastic tab inward and push the entire assembly upward through the hole.

  11. Installation is accomplished by the same steps in reverse order.

Personal Notes:

For the past 17,000 miles, I have been driving our XJ40 with only one working washer ... on the passenger side of the car. This meant that I would have to spray the passenger side of the windshield at just the right time so that the single wiper arm could hopefully drag the liquid to the driver's side. It worked fairly well but I wouldn't recommend it.

After the first snowfall, I must have knocked off the adjustable spray nozzle while clearing the windshield. This wouldn't have been possible except for the fact that the bowl-shaped plastic cover was missing on that side. The missing nozzle made things even more interesting. From this point on, all I had was a thick vertical spray of water. Again, I wouldn't recommend it, but it still worked — especially when traveling at highway speed!

If the adjustable spray nozzle comes loose, it can be snapped back on. Also, note that the nozzle may become clogged. It can be removed and cleaned by blowing air through either end of the nozzle. This was the solution for the driver's side nozzle on our car.

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