Windshield damage is more common than you think. Tiny dents and chips that begin as unnoticeable defects can quickly expand into bigger and more costly problems. Some windshield damage can be easily repaired with a special coating or other techniques. However, there are times when even small damages require a full windshield replacement. How can you tell if your damaged windshield can be repaired or if you'll need a full replacement? Consider these three issues when assessing your damage.
● The Depth of the Damage
Your windshield is actually made up of two layers of glass. The majority of windshield damage occurs to the outer portion from airborne objects. Heavier impacts can compromise the rigid outer shell and break through into the inside layer. In these cases, the inner layer is no longer able to support the tougher, heavier outer layer. This increases the chance of shattering and splintering from even minimal stress. If your damage is more than 1/8 of an inch deep, you will more than likely need a full windshield replacement.
● The Placement of the Damage
Windshield damage compromises your ability to see the road. Shallow damage that doesn't threaten the structural integrity of your glass can often be repaired easily and efficiently. However, if your damage is in a place that obscures your vision, your repair shop will recommend a full replacement. Coatings can sometimes warp the light that comes through auto glass, which makes it difficult for some people to see clearly while driving. For damage that lies directly in your field of vision, a full replacement is the safest option. Shallow damage found on the edges of the glass may be eligible for a simple repair job.
● The Type of Damage
There are several different types of damage. Some of the more common types include:
○ Bulls-eyes, which are round, dark circles with a clear impact point in the center.
○ Chips, which are small flakes of glass that are missing from the glass.
○ Cracks, which are straight lines that snake out across your glass.
○ Star breaks are a group of cracks that span out from a central impact point.
○ Stone breaks are chips caused by flying rocks.
The depth and placement of these damages will determine our repair or replacement recommendations. Smaller chips may only require a small repair, while comprehensive cracks like stone breaks, star, breaks, and bulls-eyes generally require a full replacement.
If your windshield has recently sustained damage, contact our team today for a free estimate.