So you are driving and you hear a loud noise, like something hit the glass on your car. You pullover and survey the car and you find a crack in your windshield. Before you start searching for a local windshield replacement company, here are something you should know.
Is Repairing My Windshield An Option?
It’s important to know that an auto glass company can only repair your windshield if the crack or chip is a certain size, which you will need to measure. The crack will typically need to be one inch in diameter or less and can’t be longer than three inches.
If you fit the size and are looking to pay the minimum amount instead of replacing the entire windshield, it’s important to act quickly. You want to move on getting the repair completed since the crack is unstable and can get bigger from the vibration of the car or even hitting a hole in the road.
You also want to get the glass repaired as soon as you can to avoid any water getting into the crack. If water penetrates the crack it can make it to the lamination surface and start to delaminate from the glass. It will then eventually start to fog and create an even bigger problem for your view as your driving. If you live in a colder climate, the water can freeze and expand the crack even larger. Also keep in mind that water can bring dirt into the crack, which will be impossible to flush out.
A quick tip to help you avoid any of these issues is to apply a clean strip of clear packaging tape until you are ready for the repair. This will help prevent any water or dirt from getting into the crack. You will still be at risk of the crack getting bigger when driving so be mindful of obstructions in the road and go at a slower speed.
When you are set to repair your windshield, the auto glass company will start out by preparing the crack. They will use a cleaning solution or pads of alcohol to help get rid of any dirt of loose pieces of glass in the crack. They will then need to make a good seal around the chip to secure the glass in place. The next step is to apply the resin. This is a clear and sticky substance that is made to bond to the glass. It will come out as a liquid form when applied and then harden into the glass to secure all the pieces back together. It’s important to make sure that there is enough resin in the crack that it fills the center back to the same even level of the rest of the windshield. The auto glass company will finish off by removing the excess and then its just time to let it cure.
Going the repair direction versus a windshield replacement can save you money however you need to be aware that there is still a lot of risk of the crack worsening over time. You also need to keep in mind that there will be visible mark that will be permanent on the glass.
Should I Replace My Windshield?
If your crack is longer than three inches or larger than one inch in diameter you will most likely have to replace your windshield. If you don’t have anyone, you can search for auto glass companies near me. Be sure to have your car’s information handy such as year, make, model, and the vin number. The more information you can give them the more accurate the quote will be. Make sure to call a couple of different companies to make sure you are getting the best price.
The first step that will happen during the windshield replacement process is to remove the weather stripping located on the exterior side of the windshield. The next step is for them to loosen the existing adhesive to the glass, which is keeping it in place. They will then remove the existing glass. Make sure to remind the auto glass company to transfer over any important stickers you have on the windshield. They should easily be able to use a glass scraper to keep the sticker intact and transfer to the new windshield.
Now that the opening of the windshield is open, they will need to clean and prepare the window for the new piece of glass. The next step is to add urethane glue, which will create a secure bond to the glass and the vehicle. The windshield will then need time to cure and harden so that it creates a good bond. Giving it the time it needs one to two days, will fully insure that the glue has hardened sufficiently.