Damaged Windshield: Repair or Replace?

Broken and Shattered Windshield Pane

Is it just you or has that tiny chip in your windshield grown into a crack which has fingers reaching all the way over to the driver’s side? No, it’s not just you– chips from pebbles, sand, and other sources of impact can become big problems within no time. The windshield is a part of a car’s entire structural support, so damages need to be taken seriously. But when do we replace the windshield, and when do we repair it?

  • The sooner the better— small repairs on cracks and chips can cost less than $100. In addition, cracks and chips worsen easily (if you hit a pothole, make a hard turn, or drive on gravel). Take the experts’ advice and call for assistance immediately– if you are driving away from home, repair experts can usually come to you.
  • Is it smaller than a dollar bill? If you can cover the entire crack or chip with a dollar bill, the windshield can be safely repaired, unless it is within the driver’s line of vision, around the edges, or if the windshield is older and already covered with dents and chips.
  • How does the repair process work? Windshields are made up of three layers– resin or polymer sandwiched between two outer layers of glass. Chipped areas are injected with a special resin, while cracks usually have holes drilled at either end to prevent spreading. Unfortunately, repaired areas will never have the same clarity as before.
  • DIY or DBP (Done by Professional)? If you’re feeling up to the DIY challenge of repairing chips and cracks, find a repair kit at any local autoparts store. If you want the best results, especially for chips in noticeable areas, consider turning to a professional.
  • Is your windshield beyond the help of these small repairs? Time to look at replacement options for your windshield…

Like we said, the windshield is a structural reinforcer in any vehicle. A replacement windshield won’t have as strong a seal as that from the factory, which is why it’s better to try to repair before you replace. If there’s a leak in a factory or new seal, there can be a whole different slew of problems, because water will often come in one part and exit from another. In summary: repair when possible, replace if you must, and for optimal results, hire a professional.

Questions about your auto insurance? Call BMR Insurance today at 714-838-1911 for a free quote.



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