Full-Size Jeep Window Wipe Replacement
"Window wipes" is the official term for the weatherstripping that runs along the bottom of all your roll-down windows and (theoretically) prevents water from running down inside your door. After 25 years, these wipes (especially the outside ones) can get very hard and brittle, and tend to break off easily. Before I installed spiffy new speakers in the front doors of my '77 Wagoneer, I decided I probably ought to replace the wipes to minimize the amount of water that poors down inside my doors.
I went to BJ's Off-Road, which specializes in odd-ball factory-style parts for FSJ's, and bought a full set of new wipes for all four doors and the tailgate. Cost me $130 on sale. BJ's is a great place to work with. They gave me the sale price listed on their web site, even the sale had supposedly ended, just because they hadn't gotten it taken down off their site yet. They also had the new parts at my door in just a few days.
The one problem I found was that the left and right front outer wipes had the part numbers swapped. On my wipes, the one labeled 10-9017 was actually the right wipe, and 10-9018 was the left wipe. You can tell because the retaining clip locations aren't symmetric, and will only fit if you've got the wipe in the correct location.
Although not really a problem for me, it should be noted that BJ's wipes don't have the chromed edge on the outer wipes like the stock wipes did on my '77 Wagoneer. This is only an issue for those doing concourse-grade restorations.
Replacing the wipes on all four doors and the tailgate took a little over two hours, and that included being interrupted by a cop who drove by late at night, saw me sticking a screwdriver down inside the door, and thought I was trying to break into the Jeep. :-)
The job can be done by merely rolling down the window and yanking the old ones out through the top. If all goes well, the only tool you'll need is a small (1/8" wide) flat-blade screwdriver. As you can see by inspecting the new wipes, they're held on by four metal clips. The center portion of the clip is inserted through a 1/8" x 1/2" slot in the door sheet metal to clip the wipe in place. To remove the old ones, I stuck the screwdriver down between the wipe and the sheet metal right next to each clip (being careful not to scratch the paint) and pried the bottom of the wipe away from the sheet metal (using the top of the door as a fulcrum). This bends the little center tab on each clip away from the wipe, which releases its grip on the sheet metal. You can then pull the old wipe up & out of the door. Once you've got one out & can see how they attach, this will all make much more sense.
To install the new ones, I found that I had to bend the center tab on the new clips out just a hair to get them to fit into the holes in the sheet metal. Once you've got all the clips lined up in the holes, just press them down toward the door really hard, and they'll snap in. I had to do one clip at a time (or at least one per hand, anyway) and just work my way along each wipe til all four clips were in.
On the front passenger door, the front end of the outer wipe didn't initially touch the window. Perhaps my door is tweaked, but there was about an 1/8" gap between the wipe & the glass at the front end. It touches on the back half or so of the glass, and all the other wipes touch the glass just like they should. Again, this may be because my door is tweaked. After a day or so of being installed, it appears to have moved back up against the glass where it belongs.
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last updated 19 Sep 2002 Obi-Wan (firstname.lastname@example.org)