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I have a 94 toyota celica st. Today I was driving and my windshield wipers came on automatic (the switch was in the off position) and they kept going. Then they eventually turned off after a mile or so. What can cause this to happen?

Answers from the Automotive Experts

Jessica Howe, Automotive Expert & Coach at


Thank you for writing in. This is an electrical problem, and something is allowing power to get to the wipers when it should be stopping the flow of electricity. You will have to trace down this issue, and use a little process of elimination. The first thing to check would be the wiper relay. These are easy and relatively inexpensive to replace. You can also have the relay tested at most automotive parts stores, if you want to make sure it is the problem. You will also want to look at the wiper's circuit to make sure no wires are exposed and getting power from another source.

Make sure the terminals to the fuse box are clean, dry, and tight. You will also want to check the connections to the wiper motors themselves to make sure their connections and wiring are clean, dry, and tight as well. While there is the possibility the wiper switch is faulty, you do not want to replace it unless it is completely necessary. The switches are also designed to last the lifetime of the car, and the other electrical components in the circuit are more likely to fail first. 

Good luck!

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