It’s an all too common (and unfortunate) situation: You’re driving down the freeway and suddenly, out of nowhere, a rock flies up and collides with your windshield. There’s an audible crack, you scan the glass, and your stomach does a little turn — there’s a chunk missing from your windshield.
What should you do? Should you leave it alone, keep driving your vehicle, and pray the damage doesn’t get worse? That’s always an option, but it’s definitely not your best or safest one. Read on for a step-by-step guide on how to handle a sudden rock chip in your auto glass.
Step 1: Assess the Damage
Once you’re able to park in a safe location, get out of your vehicle and examine the rock chip to the best of your ability. If there are hairline cracks extending from the chip or the damage looks serious, it can easily grow more severe and potentially compromise your safety. To avoid worsening damage, you may need a complete windshield replacement.
How can you tell if you can get by with a simple repair? Check out the types of windshield damage that are typically eligible for auto glass repair rather than replacement.
Step 2: Contact Auto Repair Shops for Service Estimates
Rock chips or small cracks in your windshield can grow larger under a wide variety of conditions. Drastic temperature fluctuations, pressure changes, and even the vibrations generated from driving can all further auto glass damage in very little time. That’s why it’s so important that you address windshield repairs as promptly as possible.
As soon as you’re able, call a few auto glass repair shops to get estimates for the repair. Keep in mind that if you get any quotes over the phone, they’re preliminary since the repair specialists cannot accurately assess the damage without seeing the vehicle in person.
Generally, windshield repairs are relatively inexpensive, so most auto glass repair shops will likely quote similarly.
Step 3: Make an In-Shop or Mobile Windshield Repair Appointment
Once you settle on a shop you like, make an appointment for windshield repairs on the earliest possible date that’s convenient for you. If you know you’ll have trouble making it to an in-shop appointment, it’s in your best interest to schedule mobile repairs to get the damage fixed as quickly as possible.
Step 4: Follow Post-Repair Instructions
Once your windshield is repaired, the technicians will likely send you off with a few care guidelines — follow them to a T. If you don’t there’s a chance the damage could spread, and then you’ll need to go through the entire process again to get a windshield replacement.
Step 5: Practice the Three-Second Rule
Last but definitely not least, make sure you practice keeping a safe following distance while you drive. Although road debris can fly up and crack your windshield at any time, keeping a healthy distance between your vehicle and others on the road can dramatically reduce your risk of incurring debris-related auto glass damage. Aim to keep three seconds between the front of your vehicle and the rear of the vehicle in front of you at the very least. If you want to be extra safe, aim for five.
Get Top-Notch Windshield Rock Chip Repair at Only 1 Auto Glass
If you’re dealing with a minor rock chip in your windshield, you can’t afford to leave it unrepaired. Don’t have time to head to the auto glass repair shop? Our team at Only 1 Auto Glass can come to you! We specialize in mobile windshield repair service for Minneapolis and St. Paul vehicle owners and can have your auto glass back in tip-top shape in no time at all. To learn more or schedule service, request a free estimate online or give us a call today at 651-789-1111.