Signs You Should Replace Your Windshield And What It Involves

The windshield of your car--it keeps the wind out, deflects bugs, and allows you a wide vista to see (and avoid) any oncoming hazards. So, when it gets a crack or otherwise starts to become an issue, it's necessary to get it fixed right away. In fact, in some states, you can't re-register your vehicle if your windshield has sustained a certain amount of damage. Read on to learn when you need to have your windshield replaced and what it involves.

Signs You Should Replace Your Windshield

In some cases, the damage to your windshield can be repaired, saving you big bucks when compared to the cost of replacing the entire windshield. The sooner the repair occurs, the less likely the damage will spread. In the following circumstances, talk to your local repair shop about the possibility of repairing, rather than replacing your windshield:

  • If the chip is smaller than a quarter.
  • If the cracks are smaller than three inches in length and not connected. (The cracks should not be in the direct line of the driver's vision, because repairs can distort the glass a small amount, making it dangerous for drivers.)

If your windshield has more serious cracks or chips than those listed above, you probably need to replace it. Manufacturers recommend replacement when damages become too large, because they can open up the windshield to moisture, which can damage the thin vinyl layer situated in between the two sheets of glass that comprise the windshield.

One other case when you might need to replace your windshield, even though there may be no visible damage, is after a major collision. Following a big impact, your vehicle's windshield frame could be weak, leaving the glass more susceptible to cracking.

Replacing Your Windshield

When you take your car in to replace the windshield (from professionals such as M S Glass Outlet), the shop will remove the entire windshield along with the moulding surrounding it. In most cases, the windshield cannot be saved during removal, because it requires a great deal of force to remove it, which often results in it breaking during the process.

Once the old windshield is removed, the installer will inspect and prepare the vehicle's frame around the windshield area. This involves cleaning the area and applying urethane on the frame, which serves to bond the new windshield to the car. The windshield is then placed and sets for a few hours to be sure the bond becomes permanent. 

The entire process usually takes under an hour and costs an average of $300.