How To Unblock Windscreen Washer Jets

Windscreen washer jets that aren’t working because they are blocked can make it difficult to clear your windscreen and also be a reason for your car to fail its MOT. If this is an issue you are facing, we show you how to unblock the washer jets with just a safety pin.

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How To Unblock Windscreen Washer Jets
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Windscreen washer jets can become blocked for multiple reasons and when they do, it can be very frustrating because you won’t have enough fluid to clear the windscreen. The main reasons for them becoming blocked is due to dirt, debris or detailing products getting clogged inside of them but it can even be caused by the calcium in the water too.

Once blocked, they’ll either output a small amount of water or none at all. To give you an example of a blocked windscreen washer, below is a video that we posted on our YouTube channel that shows a completely blocked jet and it’s the same jet that we unblock in our tutorial within this article.

Failing to unblock the windscreen washer jets before your car’s MOT can be a reason for it to fail its MOT (section 3.5). Luckily, it’s an easy fix and below we show you how to unblock the washer jets with ease.

How To Unblock Windscreen Washer Jets

1. Check If The Water Is Reaching The Washer Jet

As you can see in the image of the blocked washer jet, it has become clogged up with a mixture of detailing products. We state that its detailing products causing the blockage because the car wax that we’ve been using on the paintwork was blue in colour.

However, to confirm that the jets are actually blocked and there isn’t an issue elsewhere, you need to check that water is reaching the jets. As you can see in the image, water is dribbling out of the jets, which is a good sign because it’s easy to fix. If there wasn’t any water, it’s advised that you confirm there is screen wash in the reservoir and the motor is working/making some noise.

blocked windscreen washer jets

2. Poke A Safety Pin Through The Washer Jet

After confirming that the washer jets are blocked, you can proceed to unblock them by using a safety pin. Simply poke it in and out of the washer jet hole in order to unblock them. It really is that simple and it’s something anyone can do by themselves. If you haven’t got a safety pin, you can use a similar alternative that’s thin and long.

windscreen washer not working

3. Use The Pin To Clear Around The Jet

For good practice, whilst you have the safety pin to hand, clear the remaining dirt or detailing products around the washer jets. This will help prevent any of it from going back down the jets and blocking them again.

4. Clear The Underside Of The Jet (Optional)

If you’ve cleared the washer jets as shown in step 2 and it didn’t work, you may also need to unblock the underside of the jet. To do this, you will need to open the bonnet and locate the nozzle which may be under a cover.

Once you have located the nozzle, you’ll need to disconnect the hose that’s attached to the underside of the nozzle. You can then proceed to poke the safety pin in and out as shown in the image below.

windscreen washer jets blocked

5. Test The Unblocked Washer Jets

After you’ve unblocked the washer jets, you’ll need to test them to ensure that there is adequate pressure and they are spraying in the correct direction. If there still isn’t enough pressure coming from the jets, you may need to disconnect it altogether and give it a thorough clean. Alternatively, you can purchase a new jet which shouldn’t be too costly.

windscreen washer jets not working

How To Adjust Windscreen Washer Jets

After you’ve unblocked your windscreen washer jets, you may find that you also need to adjust them so that they spray onto the windscreen correctly. As you can see in the image below, after unblocking the washer jets, the spray that came out of the right jet was spraying too high and going over the windscreen. Therefore, it needed to be adjusted so that it was pointing lower down in order to adequately spray the windscreen ready for clearing by the wiper blade.

how to adjust windscreen washer jets

In order to adjust the windscreen washer jets, you can use the same safety pin that you used to unblock the jets. Simply push the pin into the jet and rotate the jet into the correct position on the windscreen. If the washer jet is spraying too high, you’ll want to rotate the jet downwards and vice versa.


Although you may think the worst when your washer jets stop spraying water, it’s usually an easy fix as we’ve shown above. As long as the water is reaching the jets, it’s more than likely that they are just blocked and need clearing. However, if you can’t hear the washer motor working, this would need further diagnosis. Alternatively, you may want to plug in a car diagnostic tool because this may give you the answer straight away.

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