Frequently asked questions about FIAT Tipo 16V

Why doesn't the rear wiper work?

Rain tends to get down either the spine of the wiper arm, or down a split in the window gasket causing the spine to rust and cease up. This makes it difficult for the motor to turn. To solve the problem, remove the trim off the rear tailgate and dismantle the gearbox for the wiper motor. After about an hour of turning the spine by hand it should free up nicely. Apply plenty of grease and reassemble. It should now work beautifully. Make sure you put some silicone sealant around the window gasket to seal it up.

Can I buy replacement wiper blades?

Nareman Virk says that FIAT don't sell a replacement rubber blade for the rear wiper and instead you must spend about £30 on a new arm/wiper/rubber.

How do I replace the windscreen washer motor?

The windscreen washer bottle is located in the front right hand wing. To gain access first remove the three self tapping screws using a 8mm socket that hold the coolant expansion tank onto the wing. This can then be carefully lifted to one side. The washer motor should now be accessible. The motor can be removed simply by pulling it out of it's rubber seal. A single motor is used for both the front and rear wipers. Depending on which way the motor spins it will either pump water down the white tube to the rear wiper or down the black tube to the front wiper.

The tubes are made of plastic and care has to be taken to prevent kinks. I tried replacing the front wiper tubes with silicone tube which can be brought in Radio Control Model shops. However, the inner diameter of the tubes was too narrow resulting in inadequate water pressure at the nozzels. I tried instead using 5mm plastic tubing from a home improvement store and this I found was perfect. For the font washers you will need three lengths of tubing. These need to be 240cm, 80cm and 35cm. The rear washer tube is probably quite difficult to replace as it travels along the length of the car and also feeds down the inside of the rear hatch. However the front section of this is easy to replace whilst replacing the front tubes. For this you will need another section of tube 200cm long.

Both the front and rear tubes on my car had become blocked. The best way I found to free them up is to disconnect the nozzels and then pressurize the tubes using a foot pump.

The front tube splits via a Y adaptor to the two nozzels. The adaptor is located under the wind deflector that fills the gap between the bonnet and the base of the windscreen. The deflector can be removed after the wiper arms have been disconnected. The deflector on early Tipos is held on by self tapping screws. On early models these have a phillips head screws, however on later models you will need a Torx T-20 socket to remove them.

The adaptor contains a non return valve and in my car it had stuck shut. It's probably best to replace it with a new one but if you are careful you can dismantle it. The bottom can be eased off with a small screwdiver. Be careful because there is a very small spring and button inside that can shoot out. There is also a very thin rubber seal that you could tear. I cleaned the components with a drop of metholated spirits to remove what appeared to be a glue/resin. After five minutes soaking, the spring allowed the button to move freely up and down where as before it was sticking due to the resin. The unit can then be reassembled.

If the windscreen washer bottle itself needs to be removed then this is quite a painful task. First undo the remaining 2 self tapping screws using an 8mm socket that hold the washer bottle onto the wing. It is not possible to remove the washer bottle from the top and it needs to be dropped down through the wing. To do this jack the car up and remove the front right hand wheel. Undo several small screws to remove the inner wing's plastic splash guard. You will find it necessary to loosen the side skirt in order to gain access to one of these screws. Once the plastic splash guard has been removed full access to the washer bottle can gained allowing it to be removed from underneath the wing.

What alternative rear wipers can I fit?

Nareman Virk says that instead of ordering a replacement Tipo rear wiper arm/rubber costing about £30, you may wish to consider a replacement Bravo HGT/Seicento Sporting arm/rubber which only costs £15 and looks twice as cool for half the price. Unfortunately it's also about 2" shorter.

Is the rear wipe specific to the 16V?

Not it is not specific to the 16V. 3 door, 5 door, 16v, non-16v should all use the same rear wiper motor.

Is there a rear washer bottle?

No, the rear wiper uses the same washer bottle as the front which is also shared by the headlight washers on the 5 door cars.

There are two motors, one is solely for the headlamp washers and is a one way pump. The other is reversable and has two outlets for the front and rear screens.

How does the water get to the rear washer?

The tube from the front washer bottle travels to the rear via the roof. It runs inside the drivers side A-pillar and through the roof to the flexi plastic hose near the boot hinges. When the wiper is in it's parked position the hose is naturally kinked at the base of the wiper, as the wiper moves the pipe straightens and the water sprays. The pipe could be permenantly kinked here stopping the water.

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