Your windscreen wiper fluid has run out and you need to top it up. You may be wondering whether topping it up with water will be okay. After all, water will still clean the windscreen, right? Is it safe to do this for your car and for yourself? Here is a look at the pros and cons of using water rather than windscreen wiper fluid.
You Only Hurt Yourself
According to a report by BBC News, that Auto Blog shared, those who use water instead of windscreen wiper fluid are 20% more likely to suffer from Legionnaire's disease. This is because the heat of the water is a breeding ground for the bacteria that causes this. By spraying the water onto your windscreen, you make the bacteria airborne and you can suffer the consequences.
The ingredients used in windscreen wiper fluid will kill off the bacteria, so it doesn't become a problem. It will also clean the windscreen fully.
Use a Bit of Alcohol
If you don't want to pay for windscreen wiper fluid, you can make your own. The fluid is made with an ethanol, which is basically alcohol. You could put a bit of a spirit into your tap water and pour that into the windscreen wiper fluid container instead. The alcohol will kill off the Legionnaire's disease-creating bacteria.
Windscreen Wiper More Effective
Using water isn't going to affect your car or your windscreen. However, using the specialist fluid is more effective when it comes to cleaning things off your windscreen. You'll not just get the spray from cars in front of you, but will have to clean off dead bugs and bird poop. The cleaner in the fluid is designed to clean everything quickly and easily. Water can take longer, meaning you're constantly using your wipers during a drive.
That being said, it is better than nothing. If you run out of fluid on a drive and need to top it up with something, you're better off using a bottle of water. You can always add some fluid in when you get back home or have the chance to buy some.
Using water isn't going to harm your car. It can lead to bacteria developing, and some research has shown it increases the risk of Legionnaire's disease or pneumonia. However, for an emergency to make sure you have something to clean your windscreen, it is going to be alright.For more information, contact an auto repair company, like Hillis 66 Service.