VW Tiguan Manuals

Volkswagen Tiguan Owners Manual: Rain sensor

Fig. 89 Windshield wiper lever: Adjusting rain sensor Ⓐ.

Fig. 90 Sensitive rain sensor surface.

Read and follow the introductory information and safety information firstIntroduction to the subject 

When switched on, the rain sensor automatically shortens or lengthens the delay between wiping intervals depending on how hard it is raining ⇒ . The rain sensor's sensitivity can be adjusted manually. Manual wiping (vehicles without rain sensors) ⇒ Windshield wiper lever .

Push the lever into the desired position ⇒ Fig. 89 :

  1. Rain sensor off.
  2. Rain sensor active – automatic wiping as needed.
  3. Adjusting the sensitivity of the rain sensor:

    • Move switch to the right – high sensitivity.
    • Move switch to the left – low sensitivity.

After switching the ignition off and back on again, the rain sensor stays on and works again with the wiper lever in position ① when the vehicle speed is over 10 mph (16 km/h).

Even if the rain sensor is disabled, it is still necessary to reach this speed to reactivate the wipers when the windshield wiper lever is in the intermittent wiping position. The wipers then wipe at fixed intervals instead of wiping as needed, as they do in rain sensor mode.

Possible reasons for changes in the way the rain sensor works

The rain sensor may not work properly in the sensitive area⇒ Fig. 90  (arrow) for a number of reasons; these include:

  • Worn out wiper blades: Worn out wiper blades may leave a film of water or wiping streaks; this can cause the wipers to run longer, to wipe more often, or to wipe continuously at high speed.
  • Insects: Insects hitting the sensor may trigger the wipers.
  • Salt streaks: Salt streaks on the windshield from winter driving can cause wiping more often or continuously on glass that is almost dry.
  • Dirt: Dust, wax, any other buildup on the windshield (lotus effect), or car-wash detergent residue can lower the rain sensor's sensitivity and cause it to react too slowly or not at all.
  • Crack or chip in the windshield: If a stone hits and chips the windshield while the rain sensor is on, this will trigger a wiper cycle. After that, the rain sensor will recognize the change and recalibrate itself to respond to the smaller detection zone. Depending on the size of the chip, the sensor's reaction pattern may or may not change.


The rain sensor cannot always recognize rain and activate the wipers.
  • Switch the wipers on manually when water on the windshield reduces visibility.

Clean the rain sensor's sensitive surface ⇒ Fig. 90  regularly and check the wiper blades for wear or damage.

To remove wax and coats of polish safely, we recommend using an alcohol-based windshield cleaner.

    Windshield wiper service position
    Fig. 88 Windshield wiper in service position. Read and follow the introductory information and safety information first⇒Introduction to the subject Service position In the service position ...

    Checking and refilling windshield washer fluid
    Fig. 91 In the engine compartment: Cap of the windshield washer fluid reservoir. Read and follow the introductory information and safety information first⇒Introduction to the subject Check ...

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    Volkswagen Tiguan Owners Manual

    Volkswagen Tiguan Service and Repair Manual

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