How Much Windshield Washer Fluid Does A Car Hold? (Solved)

The size of the windshield washer reservoir tank differs from one car brand to another. And the only way to determine the ideal size is to confirm in your car manual.

If you won’t find the details there, you will have to wait till the washer fluid in your windshield tank is used up, then you can pour the washer fluid measuring the amount that can be accommodated in the tank.

how much windshield washer fluid does a car hold

What is the Capacity of My Windshield Washer Fluid Tank?

As mentioned earlier, there is no standard size. Car companies use various tank capacity measurements that best suit their cars.

Therefore, if you are interested in finding out how much windshield washer fluid your car can hold, the best way is to refer to your car manual.

For car owners that may have misplaced their manual, the next best thing is to use all the washer fluid in the tank.

And then when filling it up, measure how much fluid you have put in your tank. This should give you a rough estimate of how much fluid your windshield washer reservoir can hold.

Can I Roughly Know the Size of My Windshield Wiper Fluid Tank?

Waiting for the fluid in your windshield reservoir to be used up can take a while, especially if you don’t often use your washers and wipers.

So, if you are interested in finding out how much fluid the tank can hold, here are some estimates you can work with.

In most cars, the tank can accommodate three-quarters to a gallon of windshield washer fluid. This is equivalent to 2.5 and 4 liters of fluid.

Other cars have a tank that can take up to 5 liters of the windshield washer fluid.

So, you may have a big or small tank for your windshield fluid. It just depends on your car model and brand.

From the top, the windshield washer tank may look small, however, when you begin pouring the washer, the tank may seem to take forever for it to be filled to the brim.

We have all experienced this, especially when refilling the windshield fluid reservoir of a new car. Most people are often surprised at how much fluid the windshield tank can take.

Even if you don’t fill the tank, you should know that provided you have poured at least a liter of windshield washer fluid into the reservoir that should last you for hundreds of miles before having to refill it.

There are pros to having both a small and big tank. You can go for longer without popping your hood every time to refill the windshield washer fluid.

And a small tank allows you to properly balance the concentration of the windshield washer fluid.

Unfortunately, most car owners never have the opportunity to choose the size of the tank they would have in their cars.

The reason being, it’s very rare for you to consider a small detail such as the capacity of your windshield washer reservoir when looking at the specifications of a car you want to buy.

How to Refill Your Windshield Washer Fluid in Your Car?

There is nothing more irritating than pressing the lever to clean your windshield only to see nothing jetting out of the washers and hearing your wipers scraping on a dirty windscreen.

That is usually a clear indication that you forgot to refill your windshield washer fluid reservoir. This is a very common occurrence and you need not beat yourself, because every driver has been a victim of this.

Refilling your windshield washer is as easy as filling your gas tank. It’s a process that takes less than two minutes.

And knowing the capacity of your windshield fluid tank is essential as it will ensure you have the right amount to fill it up so that it doesn’t run out faster.

The bigger your tank is, the longer you can drive without having to refill. So, it really pays off to have a huge reservoir.

Irrespective of the size of your tank, once you run out of wiper washer fluid, you have to refill it right away.

Here is a step-by-step guide;

  • Step 1

Buying the washer fluid. You can find some washer fluid at the gas station, auto parts store, or your nearest local garage retail.

Windshield washers, similar to other car care products, are not all formulated equally. You may want to do some quick research and identify which washer best suits you.

  • Step 2

With some windshield fluid on your hands, the next step is to find out where the tank is. The windshield washer reservoir tank is usually located in a very obvious place.

All you have to do is pop the hood and look for a tank with a lid that has a drawing of moving wipers. This shouldn’t be much of a problem, but if it is, refer to your manual.

  • Step 3

Look if the tank is full or has some fluid inside. Most windshield reservoir tanks are made up of translucent material. You should be able to see easily.

If there is fluid in the tank then your washer lines could be clogged. If it is empty, move on to the next step.

  • Step 4

With the cap wide opened, pour your windshield washer fluid into the reservoir. If you think you can spill some, always use a funnel which will help channel all the fluid in the tank.

Be on the lookout when refilling the tank. Do not overfill the reservoir. This may lead to cracking especially when the temperatures under the hood get too high.

  • Final Step

Close the cap and test if the sprayer is working. When you press the windshield wiper controls, the fluid should jet from the washers and land on your windshield so that the wipers can clean it.

Should I Get a Low Windshield Washer Fluid Symbol Indicator on My Car?

If your car has this feature, then yes you should be warned when your windshield washer fluid level lowers in the tank. In most old car models, this feature is not available.

And you will have to check regularly to prevent scenarios where you are in the middle of the road, your windscreen is dirty and there is nothing you can do about it.

Also, there are times when your windshield washer fluid level sensor may be faulty. This may send an indication to your dashboard only for you to find enough fluid in the reservoir.

In such instances, you should have the sensor fixed by a mechanic to avoid confusion.

What Should I Do When My Windshield Washer is Clogged?

It is normal for the nozzles on your windshield washer to be clogged by dust particles and debris. First, you need to determine that there is fluid in the tank.

Because if you spray and nothing is coming out, the reservoir could be empty. Having confirmed your washers are clogged, grab a pin and poke the washers gently.

You will see particles coming out. Test if the washers are working.

Are All Windshield Wiper Fluids the Same?

No, they are not. When discussing how to refill the windshield washer fluid, we mentioned that not all washers are formulated the same. You need to do some digging and determine which washer is ideal for you.

Remember, if you are refilling a windshield washer during winter, please buy one that won’t freeze easily when exposed to cold temperatures.

You should also read the instructions of the fluid carefully because some come in concentrated form and need to be diluted with water.

Using them at full strength can damage car paint. While we are still on diluting washer fluids, remember that not all have to be diluted as well. Always read the instructions on the label.

Can I Make an Antifreeze Washer Fluid?

Even though water is not ideal for the windshield fluid tank, when a couple of other ingredients are added, it can be safely used to clean the windscreen.

To make an antifreeze washer fluid, you will need half a cup of ammonia or vinegar to prevent water from freezing, a tablespoon of dishwashing liquid, and a gallon of water.

Mix it thoroughly and pour it into the reservoir tank.

Is It Safe to Put Water in the Windshield Fluid Reservoir?

You may have heard people say that windshield fluid is a mixture of soap and water. So, there is no need to pay for something that you can get straight from your tap.

A mixture of soap and water can clean your windshield easily. However, when you put water in your reservoir, expect mold growth and calcium deposits in your tank.

Also, when it gets cold, water will definitely freeze and the ice will break the reservoir and pump lines.

Please stick to windshield washer fluids. They are not only great at cleaning your windshield but are formulated to retaining their liquid form even when the temperatures drop drastically.

When you use water, you risk damaging the reservoir, putting you back at least $200 in replacement costs.