How to Replace the Windshield Washer Reservoir in a Chevy Silverado

by Editorial TeamUpdated November 07, 2017

Items you will need

  • Windshield washer reservoir

  • Pry bar

  • 1/8-inch drift pin

  • Screwdriver

  • Seals

  • Washer fluid

  • Drain bucket

How to Replace the Windshield Washer Reservoir in a Chevy Silverado. Introduced in 1999, the Chevy Silverado is a full-size pickup truck. Many owners don't keep their truck, especially if it's a work truck, as clean as they should, but it's vital to keep the windshield clean. Fill the windshield washer fluid routinely and use it often. If you know you just filled it and find you don't have any fluid, you probably have a leak. Find it and repair it.

Shop for a new windshield washer reservoir after finding the part number for your Chevy Silverado, which depends on the year of your truck. See the Resources section for places to start your online search.

Select a level surface to work on your Chevy Silverado. Be sure there's plenty of room. After putting your truck in park, turn it off, put on the emergency brake and exit the truck. With your right hand, reach in and pull the hood release.

Access the engine compartment by releasing the auxiliary release latch under the hood. Raise the hood until the hydraulic lift kicks in and opens it fully.

Find the windshield washer reservoir. The reservoir in the Chevy Silverado is the black-capped reservoir located in the bottom right corner of the engine compartment. A waterspout is on the cap.

Pour fluid into the reservoir to locate the leak, and if it's small, you may be able to patch it, otherwise, replace the whole reservoir. Disconnect the battery's negative cable and wait 90 seconds before stating to work, if your Chevy Silverado is equipped with air bags.

Remove the wiper arms by one of three ways. If a spring clip holds the wiper arms together and there's a release tab at the center, depress the tab and it will release the arm. If there isn't a tab use a small pry bar to depress the spring and release the arm. Otherwise, there should be a small release hole at the base and inserting a 1/8-inch drift pin into the access hole will release the locking device and let you easily take out the arm.

Take off the cowl top screen by gently pulling the outer corners of the cowl until you're able to release it. Then, using a screwdriver, disconnect the wiring harness, the washer hose and the sheet metal screws attached to your reservoir. After that, simply lift out the windshield washer reservoir. Throw away all the old reservoir's seals--you'll need to replace these when you install the new reservoir.

Install the new windshield washer reservoir in your Chevy Silverado by putting the tank in, and reconnecting the wiring harness, the washer hose and the sheet metal screws and then replacing the seals.

Put the cowl top screen back in place. Then, reassemble the windshield washer arms by reversing the order in Step 6. Reconnect the battery and fill the new reservoir with windshield washer fluid.


Place a drain bucket below the reservoir to catch any washer solvent that may leak out. You can buy premixed windshield washer fluid--diluted window cleaner--or make your own by adding about three cups of window cleaner per one gallon of distilled water.


Avoid frozen fluid in your windshield washer reservoir and your washer lines by using weather appropriate fluid in the wintertime that includes both cleaner and ice remover.

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