Visibility when driving is a major part of driving and your windshield plays a vital role in it. A car’s windshield is on the front of the car so regardless of what you do it will take a beating. Insects, birds, debris from the road or you know gravel from a nearby construction site can cause small chips in the windshield.
So when your windshield gets chipped or cracked should you get it replaced or repaired? Well regardless of whether it is a small chip or a large crack you should most definitely have the windshield repaired or replaced.
It’s better to do it early so that it doesn’t become a health hazard. So what do you do? Well, here are some things that you should know about windshield repair and replacement when there are small chips or is cracked.
Is It Time To Replace Or Repair?
Small cracks and chips are easily repaired by a professional. On top of that, the cost for these smaller chips to the windshield is reasonably less. So you may be wondering what is considered as a small chip on the windshield. Well, any chip or crack that can be covered with a dollar bill is considered a small chip or crack on the windshield.
The professional consensus on these cracks is that you can easily repair them with the help of a professional. But if you see that the crack is in your direct line of sight or there are three cracks or chips or maybe the damage is near the edge and your windshield is very old. Under these circumstances, professionals from all over have advised to replace the windshield rather than repairing it.
Studies from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration tell us that windshields are pretty important for the structural safety of a car and you as an owner should not ignore it. Because of its importance to the overall structural strength of the car it is imperative that you repair or replace the car cracks or chips on the windshield before it gets too out of hand.
The usual windshield consists of 3 layers. The top layer is glass followed by a polymer then glass after that as well. Because of this, there are a few ways to repair the windshield. You can inject a resin to plug in the cracks. This ensures the cracks are sealed and that it doesn’t spread.
Another common technique that’s used is drilling holes at the end of the crack. This too stops the cracks from spreading throughout the windshield. The drilling needs to be done really deftly which requires an expert hand. This is why you should not try it out yourself unless you have technical experience in this matter.
Driving with a cracked windshield is illegal in many states so make sure you fix the small chip on the windshield as soon as you can. This is because a single crack can easily spread when driving across bumpy roads or taking a hard turn. If you cannot go to one then there are repair companies that can come to your location and have the windshield fixed.
The following are points where the windshield should not be repaired but replaced. This should work as a guideline on what to do when you see a crack or chip on the windshield.
- Chips or cracks on the interior part of the windshield
- Damage that goes through all layers of the auto glass
- Chips or cracks that impair the driver's view
- Complex or big spider cracks
- Any crack over 18" long
- Cracks that are contaminated
- Cracks or chips on the edge of the windshield
If you are comfortable with doing the repairs yourself or if you are experienced enough in this matter then you can do it at home although I wouldn’t recommend it. You can find the best crack/chip repair kits here in Autopartsz. These repair kits usually have a resin injection which is as good as the ones that professionals use.
While the products are basically the same there are little differences. Also, there is a huge difference in experience and expertise. If you have cracks or small chips in areas that usually go unnoticed then you can try the repair kit out but otherwise taking professional help is the best option out there for you.
This is because the windshield is front and center of your car and if you have a botched attempt people won’t notice it much. Also, this will ensure you do not harm the structural integrity of the windshield glass as well.
Windshield Repair In A New Light
So there you go, these are some of the things you should do when you see a small chip or crack on your windshield. Overall I suggest like most experts to go to a repair shop whenever you need a crack or chip repaired. This is because of the expertise required for the repairs. However, if you need a replacement then there is no other option than going to a repair shop. Read our article on the car maintenance basics to know more on this.
You can, however, buy the windshields from online auto parts shops like PartsCargo to get the best value for your budget. So with that being said, this is where I draw the finishing line. Let us know in the comments below how you like the content.
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