Most 2CVs imported to the UK arrived with their windscreen wipers parking on the right, in front of the driver, a legacy of left hand drive design. If you wish to make them park on the left, so that they interfere less with the driver’s line of sight, this is what you do. Disconnect the battery before you start.

(a) The Club/Charleston instrument panel is removed by unscrewing five crosshead screws. The first two are on the right hand side of the plastic housing. The next two are on the left - there are actually three screws here but you can ignore the centre one of the three. The final one to remove is to the right and above where the steering column goes under the panel.
(b) The smaller, Special/Dolly panel is removed by unscrewing four crosshead screws on the face of the panel - note that the screws go through rubber spacers behind the panel and these must be replaced when you put it all back together to prevent damage to the wiring as the panel is tightened to the body of the car.

Pull the instrument panel towards you far enough to gain access to all the screws which hold the full width plastic dashboard beneath the windscreen. You may find it helpful to unscrew the cable from the back of the speedometer. If you find the steering wheel is in your way it can be removed by lifting the centre cover out and undoing the three 11mm bolts - don’t let them drop down the column tube! Ensure that none of the electrical connectors pull off the terminals at the back of the instrument panel. If one does come off, the panel should have a coloured mark on it which corresponds with the insulation colour of the wire.

This is held by self-tapping crosshead screws into clips inserted in holes in the body panel. The screws are of different lengths and thickness so make careful note of which goes where. There are three screws on the top of the panel - the two on either end run through metal spacer tubes which will drop out as the screw is removed - don’t lose them. Under the panel there are six more screws. The third from the left runs through a spacer tube. It is not uncommon for some of these screws to be missing so now might be a good time to source some replacements. With all the screws removed, carefully remove the dashboard. The plastic may be quite brittle so treat it with respect.

You should now be able to see the wiper motor and linkage mechanism and this must now be removed.

(Note - the photographs in this section are of the earlier type wiper motor, the later type being cylindrical. However the linkages which you will be altering are similar on both types. The photos were taken AFTER the park position had been altered to left side parking).

Disconnect the wiring to the motor. On earlier motors there are two wires connected direct to the motor by spade or ring terminals, one with red insulation and the other with green. The terminals on the motor are coloured accordingly. If the coloured insulation is missing, make sure you know which wire goes on which terminal. On later wiper motors there will be a three pin plug which should be pulled apart.

Now working outside the car remove the wiper arms by prising them off the spindles with a screwdriver. Remove the large chrome nuts ((usually 20mm) which hold the spindles beneath the windscreen. Lift the chrome washers and rubber seals off of the spindles noting the order in which they are fitted. Inside the car remove the two 11mm screws beneath the wiper motor and lift the entire assembly away. Note that there is an earthing strap on one of these screws which must be put back correctly when you’ve finished.

To make the wipers park on the opposite side you must turn the crank attached to the motor spindle through 180° as follows. Remove the tiny circlip from the end of the crank spindle (photo). This is best done with pointed nose pliers to squeeze the tabs on the edge of the circlip sufficiently to lift it out of its slot in the spindle. There should be a tiny washer behind the circlip.

There should now be enough play in the connecting rod assembly to lift the rods clear of the crank spindle. Now undo the 8mm nut which holds the crank to the motor spindle, noting the position of the washers. The motor spindle and crank may be shaped so that the crank can only be fitted in two positions (which makes life easier!) but on other motors the spindle is splined. Turn the crank through 180° and refit it to the motor spindle with the washers and nut. You will find that in order to refit the connecting rod assembly to the crank spindle it is necessary to move it sideways which in turn will move the wiper arm spindles to the new parking position. Refit the tiny washer and the circlip - squeeze it tight with the pointed nose pliers.

Lubricate the crank spindle and where the connecting rods fit on the wiper spindles with 3 in 1 oil or similar.

When testing to see if all works OK, do not leave the ignition turned on for more than a minute or two at a time or you could damage the ignition coil.

Refitting is the reverse of dismantling but before you replace the dashboard and instrument panel, check that it works OK. DO NOT PUT THE WIPER ARMS ON YET and never put your fingers near the connecting rods in the wiper assembly whilst it is running. Reconnect the battery and turn the wipers on (ignition on). If the mechanism doesn’t run smoothly be prepared to turn both ignition and wiper switches off in a hurry to avoid blowing a fuse or damaging the wiper motor. Satisfy yourself that when you turn the wipers off using the wiper switch (leaving the ignition on) and they have ‘parked’ the spindles are in such a position that if the wiper arms had been fitted they would be to the extreme LEFT of their travel.

If the mechanism doesn’t run properly you will have to remove it again to find out why. Make sure that both the cranks on the wiper spindles are pointing in the same direction - the photo of the complete assembly shows them in the ‘parked’ position for parking the wipers on the left. If it still doesn’t run, remove the crank from the motor spindle again and then see if the motor will run on its own. If it does then there is something in the way you have refitted the connecting rods which is causing a problem. Refer to the photos and make sure yours looks the same!

You can now refit the wiper arms in such a way that they are in the left parked position, just clear of the windscreen rubber seal. Turn the wipers on again to check they park correctly.

Now refit the dashboard and instrument panel - if you disconnected the speedo cable remember to refit it.
Technical pages
Close this window