I took the day off from doing any construction on the van yesterday and today. Instead I focused on some important maintenance items that I’ve been putting off while I build out the interior. Yesterday I got an oil change and scheduled a transmission filter / fluid change and a radiator coolant flush. I also took the van in to get new tires, as the ones that were on there were pretty dry rotted. They weren’t able to change the spare, but the other four tires are all new.
On the way home from the tire shop, I stopped at Home Depot to restock my lumber supply and it started raining just before I left. Now, other than the rain being a bad thing because the driver door leaks, I should mention that the She-Beast’s windshield wipers also don’t work. Needless to say, it was not a fun drive home.
It irritated me so much driving home last night, that I decided it was time to fix the wipers. I took out the entire wiper assembly this morning and found out that the wiper transmission and the driver side wiper arm were completely stripped. The nearby auto parts store said a new wiper transmission would be $125, which I wasn’t gonna pay, and didn’t even include the cost of a new wiper arm. Instead, I went to a local salvage yard and looked around.
Out of everything they had, there were only two Chevy Express vans for me to loot from (which I had to find on my own by just walking around forever). The wiper transmission and driver side wiper arm on both vans were stripped, just like mine. However, I was able to find a few other parts I’ve been looking for: a driver side sun visor, driver side headlight retaining ring, driver side rear door panel, and the wiper fluid hose. I was stoked to find these parts, especially the visor, because I’ve been looking on eBay for awhile with no luck. I only paid $30 for it all and just the visor on eBay is about $50, though they all seem to be passenger side.
The driver side rear door was the only door missing the plastic panel. The panels are covering the insulation I added, so it looked odd without it. Here are pics without the panel and with the panel I found today.
The driver sun visor was broken when I got the van, so it was nice to finally find one that also happened to be grey to match the rest of the cab interior. Now I can drive during sunrise/sunset and not go blind.
I found another salvage yard about 20 minutes from where I live and luckily they were able to help me out with the wiper transmission and the wiper arm. They only had a couple vans to choose from, but were able to get me one that wasn’t stripped and I got both parts for $45. It came out of a GMC Savana, which is the exact same van as a Chevy Express.
I got home and immediately installed it and added some new wiper blades. I finally have working wipers and don’t have to worry about the rain as much now. My washer fluid isn’t shooting on the windshield like it should, so that’s my next task. Even with the new hose I found today, something else seems to be the problem.
I still need to change out the brake fluid, power steering fluid, and differential fluid, as I have no idea how long any of it has been in the van.