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Rain-X washer fluid ruins low fluid sensor?

Posted By: mrdctaylor

Rain-X washer fluid ruins low fluid sensor? - 06/08/18 04:12 PM

Guys,

I've been using the orange Rain-X washer fluid in my vehicles for a year or so now. I just happened to come across a post somewhere about this stuff messing up some guy's low washer fluid sensor. Has anyone here ever had this happen? So far mine seem fine, but I'm thinking about ditching the couple of gallons I have on the shelf and going back to cheap-o fluid. Thoughts?
Posted By: mclasser

Re: Rain-X washer fluid ruins low fluid sensor? - 06/08/18 04:22 PM

I heard about Rain-X not playing nice with some Audi fluid sensors. I've been using it on my cars for a few years now without issue.
Posted By: mrdctaylor

Re: Rain-X washer fluid ruins low fluid sensor? - 06/08/18 04:23 PM

The comment I read was from a guy with a VW. Maybe it is a German car thing. :-)
Posted By: mrdctaylor

Re: Rain-X washer fluid ruins low fluid sensor? - 06/08/18 04:39 PM

I found this:

https://www.classaction.org/rain-x-lawsuit

"The maker of Rain-X has been hit with a class action lawsuit alleging it deceived consumers by indicating its windshield washer fluid was suitable for use in all mass-produced vehicles. Consumers have complained that their low-fluid indicator lights wouldn’t shut off after filling their cars with Rain-X – and the lawsuit says this problem stems from the fact that the product isn’t compatible with certain vehicles. According to the suit, Rain-X shouldn’t be used in cars made by:

Volkswagen
Audi
Mini Cooper
BMW
Mercedes Benz
Chrysler

In some cases, consumers have complained that the Rain-X products actually corroded or otherwise damaged their washer fluid sensors – a problem that cost them hundreds of dollars to fix. Unfortunately, the makers of Rain-X are reportedly refusing to cover these costs."
Posted By: jonnied1

Re: Rain-X washer fluid ruins low fluid sensor? - 06/08/18 04:42 PM

Messed up the sensor on my 2008 Ram truck. It will say low washer fluid with a full tank anytime it is below 45 deg. I haven't used Rain-X for several years now and the sensor is still messed up!
Posted By: mrdctaylor

Re: Rain-X washer fluid ruins low fluid sensor? - 06/08/18 04:46 PM

It looks like the German cars listed on that website plus Chrysler (and I'm assuming Ram trucks) use a type of sensor that can get fouled by this stuff. It is an electrode type sensor. I'm wondering if cars like my Toyotas use a float type sensor. I found a thread on a 4Runner forum where guys talked about using this stuff for years with no issues.
Posted By: Wolf359

Re: Rain-X washer fluid ruins low fluid sensor? - 06/08/18 05:00 PM

Yep, got the same problem with my Mercedes. It's a $10 part, but it's the labor that's a pain. Never used Rain-X, but I guess the previous owner may have. There was some video of someone cleaning off the sensor, I guess it gets coated in gunk and needs a cleaning.
Posted By: opus1

Re: Rain-X washer fluid ruins low fluid sensor? - 06/08/18 05:01 PM

I've used it off and on in both the Sonata and Dakota and haven't had any problems...maybe because I rotated with other brands/types?

Something to keep in mind, though; I may not buy any more just to be safe. Thanks.
Posted By: pandus13

Re: Rain-X washer fluid ruins low fluid sensor? - 06/08/18 05:47 PM

Originally Posted By: Wolf359
... There was some video of someone cleaning off the sensor, I guess it gets coated in gunk and needs a cleaning.

..just thinking out loud.

Do you think it would be cleaned by dumping a quart of rubbing alcohol or vinegar, then topping off with fluid after x hours?
Posted By: Hootbro

Re: Rain-X washer fluid ruins low fluid sensor? - 06/08/18 06:04 PM

The stuff messed up the level sensor in my old Ram truck and also my wifes FJ cruiser in that it plugged up the nozzle. No more for me.
Posted By: Wolf359

Re: Rain-X washer fluid ruins low fluid sensor? - 06/08/18 06:46 PM

Originally Posted By: pandus13
Originally Posted By: Wolf359
... There was some video of someone cleaning off the sensor, I guess it gets coated in gunk and needs a cleaning.

..just thinking out loud.

Do you think it would be cleaned by dumping a quart of rubbing alcohol or vinegar, then topping off with fluid after x hours?


Not according to the video I saw. It looked like it was really caked on.
Posted By: Reddy45

Re: Rain-X washer fluid ruins low fluid sensor? - 06/08/18 07:52 PM

Is the orange stuff used because it cleans better or something? I run the blue stuff since it's cheap but using your wipers to clean your windshield is really ineffective. Easier to pull into a gas station and use the squeegee dunked in rain water. More scrubbing action.
Posted By: mrdctaylor

Re: Rain-X washer fluid ruins low fluid sensor? - 06/08/18 08:02 PM

I use the orange stuff because it has Rain-X coating that helps water bead up on your windshield. I like the way it works, but I don't want any unnecessary repairs in my future.
Posted By: irv

Re: Rain-X washer fluid ruins low fluid sensor? - 06/08/18 08:05 PM

Originally Posted By: jonnied1
Messed up the sensor on my 2008 Ram truck. It will say low washer fluid with a full tank anytime it is below 45 deg. I haven't used Rain-X for several years now and the sensor is still messed up!


I'm glad I read this as I have a 13 Ram. I can't say with a 100% certainty if it has ever seen Rain X but if it did, it was only a top up amount as I know I had some on hand within the last couple years.

I mainly use Costco brand windshield washer fluid at the -45 ratio. I see no need, for the cost of it, to be switching it out to a summer brand every spring.

Thanks for the info. cheers
Posted By: gregk24

Re: Rain-X washer fluid ruins low fluid sensor? - 06/08/18 10:40 PM

I would have never thought chemicals in washer fluid would damage sensors. Good to know! Won't be using this brand.
Posted By: xxch4osxx

Re: Rain-X washer fluid ruins low fluid sensor? - 06/08/18 11:43 PM

Been using it in my Ram since I got it new. No problems so far.
Posted By: Starman2112

Re: Rain-X washer fluid ruins low fluid sensor? - 06/08/18 11:44 PM

I’ve heard about this issue before. Been using it for years without a problem.
Posted By: Wolf359

Re: Rain-X washer fluid ruins low fluid sensor? - 06/09/18 10:40 PM

Originally Posted By: Starman2112
I’ve heard about this issue before. Been using it for years without a problem.


The problem is that it takes a while for it to build up. I never used it in my car, but who knows what the previous owner did.
Posted By: ffhdriver

Re: Rain-X washer fluid ruins low fluid sensor? - 06/09/18 11:21 PM

I never use anything but the"blue stuff" I get at Walgreens. I used Rainx once, but didn't like the "film" on my windshield.
Posted By: rustypigeon

Re: Rain-X washer fluid ruins low fluid sensor? - 06/10/18 06:04 PM

Originally Posted By: mrdctaylor
I'm wondering if cars like my Toyotas use a float type sensor. I found a thread on a 4Runner forum where guys talked about using this stuff for years with no issues.


We have been using the Rain-X fluid for 4 years on our 05 Highlander with no problems.

I have heard that it does cause problems with BMW's so I use regular blue fluid in it.

My other 2 cars do not have low fluid sensors so I use Rain X in those also.
Posted By: bdcardinal

Re: Rain-X washer fluid ruins low fluid sensor? - 06/10/18 08:48 PM

I use the Prestone stuff with the orange scent and then add Rain-X to the tank without issue. But then again none of the cars in the family have a low washer fluid sensor.
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