Were you aware there is a simple answer to the question: When you should repair or replace a chipped windshield? This is the general rule of thumb glass professionals, like the ones at Wooster Glass, follow: You can repair the windshield if the crack or chip is less than the size of a quarter. If the damage has spread beyond that, we recommend replacing it because of safety reasons.
What leads to a cracked or chipped windshield?
Winter is the time when more people show up at Wooster Glass with chipped windshields. Winter is the No. 1 season for this kind of damage for a number of reasons, particularly the freezing and thawing of the roads. When it rains, or when snow and ice melts, the moisture wreaks havoc in the asphalt. The water causes the street to crack, and these cracks can eventually become potholes. When this happens, stones become loose. As vehicles pass over the roadway, the spinning tires propel those stones. Most of the time, these rocks and stones will bounce off windshields — you usually hear when the stones hit, but it is often to determine where.
However, this is not always the case, and there are times when they strike the glass and cause cracks or chips. It’s true those loose stones can cause problems, but did you know that chunks of road salt can be problematic, too? The salt is used to melt ice on roadways, but there are times when large pieces of salt get stuck in the grooves of tires, they break free and go flying back — just like those loose stones that get propelled. This can result in damage to a windshield. Potholes can also be the cause of a cracked or chipped windshield. When a car travels down the road and a tire strikes a deep pothole, the severe jarring action, at times, can aggravate a chip in the glass and cause it to crack.
Yes, winter is the top season when the glass techs at Wooster Glass deal with this issue, however, it is not the only season for a windshield to crack or chip. Believe it or not, there’s a chance of getting a cracked windshield on a really hot day. Think about the glass becoming hot and then someone hoses it down with cold water from a hose in an attempt to wash the vehicle. If the glass became hot enough and the water coming out of the hose cold enough, it could cause some serious expansion and contraction. And, it can leave behind a windshield that is damaged.
OK, so there are a number of ways your car or truck could end up in our shop at 419 S. Market St. in Wooster because of a cracked or chipped windshield. But, do you know No. 1 cause? From what our customers tell us, it is a stone chip … and, it was a stone that came while they were driving behind a gravel truck. If you find yourself driving behind a gravel truck keep your distance.
To avoid a chipped or cracked windshield, be careful and remember it can happen …
- In any season when you are driving behind a gravel truck;
- In the summer on very hot days when you are washing your vehicle; and
- During the winter because of loose stones, large salt chunks, and potholes.
When to repair a chipped windshield
As we already pointed out, a chipped or cracked windshield can be repaired if the total area of the damage is smaller than the size of a quarter. It can be difficult to determine whether a chip or crack will remain the same size or if it will expand. There a times when that chip will always remain a chip. But, some people notice the chip runs out and becomes a crack relatively quickly. Because of this, it is important to be vigilant when it comes to checking your windshield when it sounds as if it has been pelted by a stone, or if you have minor damage in the windshield. If you choose to ignore a small chip or crack, remember it can easily become a major problem.
Why choose to repair a windshield instead of replacing it?
The main reason to repair instead of replace a windshield is the price. A repair can range from a quarter to a tenth the price of a full replacement. If you do choose to get your windshield repaired at Wooster Glass, if the chip winds up cracking in the same spot, you will receive credit for the repair when Wooster Glass replaces the windshield. For example, if you spent $60 on repair, and it later cracked in the same spot, the cost of the replacement windshield will be reduced by $60.
Some things to consider before repairing a chipped windshield
The state will not allow companies like Wooster Glass to repair a windshield if the damage is in the driver’s line of vision. This can cause a safety problem if the crack or chip falls within the line of sight when the person is driving. Customers should remember Wooster Glass cannot eliminate the damage already done to the glass. When its glass professionals repair a chip, a tool is clamped onto the window to allow a resin to be injected into the chip or crack. If it is a chip, the drill into the glass to create a spot that can easily accept the resin. Then it is hardened using ultraviolet light.
There are times the window will look better, but there are also those occasions when it appears as though the damage remains. However, the resin has been injected and bonded into the problem area. Vehicle owners should also realize there is a small probability the window could crack further while it is being repaired. This happens rarely, but there still exists a chance. This is because a machine is hooked to the glass and is tightened. If Wooster Glass can be of any help with your damaged windshield, contact us via this website or call us at 330-264-8652. We work with all insurance companies, so if this is an insurance claim, let the claims adjuster know you want us to do the work. It’s that simple.