Know When To Repair And Replace Your Windshield

Posted on: 15 April 2016


Your vehicle's windshield is more than just an opening to see through and should be properly cleaned and maintained to prevent chips and cracks. Unfortunately, damage is likely to occur due to flying debris on the road.

Failing to repair even the slightest damage on the glass can not only make your car unsightly, it can weaken the entire windshield structure and car roof, and can obstruct your vision while on the road. To make it worse, delayed repairs can cause dust to accumulate inside the glass layers, forming a stain that makes it impossible to restore the windshield's clarity. Read on to learn damage that can be repaired and what would necessitate windshield replacement.

Tiny chips

If you notice any tiny chips on your windshield, chances are that they can be filled by an auto glass technician using windshield sealant. The repair will usually not totally erase the chip but will prevent it from growing. However, delayed repairs can cause the chip to start growing, which would necessitate a windshield replacement.

A good sign that a chip has grown too big for repairs is to place a quarter inside it. If it fits, then the gap is too big to be filled using sealant, as the filling material would just pool the gap but fail to properly bond to the surrounding glass.

If the chip is on the driver's line of vision, it is usually not repairable, as the sealant would reflect light and form a glare on the windshield which would make it impossible to see approaching cars. Chips that are at the edge of the windshield may also not be repairable, as the filling material would not bond to the glass on one side, resulting in a weak spot.

Shattered windshield

If your windshield is shattered by a piece of debris, it is important that you get the entire windshield replaced so as to maintain its structural integrity. Even a tiny crack can grow quickly due to weather changes or driving at high speeds. In some cases, even slamming the car door or going over a bump or pothole can worsen the damage, causing the glass to break completely. Damage that shatters the entire bottom of your windshield is equally dangerous, as it can cause a total roof collapse. 

In many cases, tiny scratches and chips can be repaired by a skilled auto glass technician, but there are instances where windshield replacement is needed to keep you safe. Contact a business like Buy-Rite Auto Glass to learn more.