The Importance of Your Windshield

Windshield is probably not a thing many people think of when buying a car. Some focus on performances, some on the looks, and some on safety of the car being purchased. But why is the windshield worth talking about?

  • Protection

The very first thing on your mind right now is probably protection. Windshield got its name thanks to the purpose it was invented for. It is a shield, as the name says, that protects us from rain, wind, bugs and other debris we encounter on our road such as dust and rocks. You’d admit it wasn’t much fun riding with goggles and spitting the flying insects every few minutes, while losing your hearing after a ride or two. Beside this, you guess it wasn’t fun riding in cold weather either. Windshield is a glass sandwich, with a layer of polyvinyl in between. With the silicon connecting it to rest of the car, it is great isolation and water resistant.

  • Flexibility sandwich

This “glass-polyvinyl sandwich” of yours has one more purpose, which is of high importance for safety in car. If an accident occurs, glass might break, but the polyvinyl is flexible and it will cushion the impact. In the beginning windshields were made of window glass, but over the years and many accidents later, they realized this is not a good idea. Many experiments later, they have found the optimal combination which increases safety level of the passengers in the car.

  • Damaged windshield

Windshields can be damaged by pebbles and rocks if you are driving too fast off road, or by tree branches. Often happens that people leave their cars parked under old trees, and after the storm they walk out to find their windshield cracked. Try to avoid these situations and save yourself hundreds of dollars. Important thing to mention is windshields cannot be repaired. If cracks are longer than 18 inches, or they are edge cracks, you will have to replace the windshield completely.

  • Forget the DIY replacement

Many of us are big fans of DIY repairs. I agree, its money-saving, it is time-saving and you trust yourself the most. Save DIY’s for some gardening or household decoration, because replacing windshield is no job for an unprofessional. Proper removal is a must. If windshield is removed improperly, it is a danger for passengers. Windshield supports the roof, and in the case of an accident, if the windshield is not properly placed and glued, it won’t be supportive enough. Roof will be as made of glass, in a bad way. If rollover occurs, the roof will crush passengers in no time. So don’t think twice on this one and get your windshield replaced by the people who know how to do it.

Another thing that can happen due to improperly installed windshield is affecting airbags on the side of your car. If not installed properly, airbags will not deploy right. In other words, safety of your car becomes danger for you.

  • Why?

Car industry is developing fast, as well as science, society and our needs. Windshield have special UV layers now, to protect us from radiation or they can be tinted, to protect us from sun and therefore increase our visibility.

One way or another, you cannot deny the importance of your windshield, and now you know why.

How A Chip In Your Windshield Can Lead To A Long Crack

Windshields are of great importance when it comes to the safety of your car. It protects driver and passengers in the car from dust, dirt, wind, pebbles, rain and snow. On the other side, windshields also support the roof of your car, providing protection in case of roll over. Keeping your windshield in a good condition is extremely important. Noticing every scratch, chip or crack can save you life without exaggeration.

What is a chip?Windshield Chip

Chips are damages done to your windshield by pebbles, rocks, branches or any other objects you encounter while driving. They are damaged glass that can lead to bigger problems in time, depending on the conditions such as weather, road condition you drive on, other debris, etc.

Are chips repairable and how?

Unlike long cracks, chips can be repaired. The sooner you notice it, the better you can fix it. Repairing chips on time will save you money and it will save you trouble of replacing the whole windshield once the chip turns into a longer crack. There is a whole process of repairing a chip. It is highly recommended to take your car to the car shop and leave this to professionals. They will further inspect the chip and determine if it is repairable or not, since some chips cannot be cleaned from debris and cleaning is crucial for the process of fixing your windshield damage. If the chip can be repaired, after cleaning process, it will be sealed with special resin material. Using ultraviolet light this resin material will become harder and glass-like.

  • From chip to not cheap

Chip repair is nothing in comparison to windshield replacement. Why are we bringing this up? Because if you don’t prevent a chip from becoming a crack, it is inevitable you will have to change whole windshield in some time. Don’t wait until it’s too late.

Whether a chip turns into a crack depends on various conditions, like mentioned before, such as weather. Low temperature will increase chances of chip spreading into a crack by 80%. Remember the school experiment with bottle of water which turns into ice? Same happens here. Water can get stuck in the chip during the day, for example, and during the night when the temperature falls under 0°C, water will turn into ice, and the ice will spread, causing the chip to spread into a crack.

High temperatures can contribute to cracking as well. Chip is more likely to spread into vertical crack on high temperatures, since high temperatures causes windshield shape distort. This distortion might not catch our sight, but trust us, it can catch your chip and make you pay for whole windshield.

Driving on bumpy roads will definitely speed up the cracking, no need to explain this. More stress on the windshield, more the chip tends to become a windshield replace.

  • What to do?

Try not to drive too fast off road and not to drive behind trucks loaded with building material such as gravel. Avoid parking under trees as much as you can. If you notice a chip on your windshield and you are not able to take your car to the shop right away, put clear packing tape over the chip and prevent the debris from contaminating it.

Don’t leave it hanging on the windshield. You’ll have to replace it later – the windshield, not the chip.

Don’t Wait To Get A Windshield Replacement or Windshield Repair

If you use your car frequently then you are bound to get cuts in your tires, scratches in your paint and of course the biggest culprit, chips and cracks in your windshield. It’s very common for a windshield to suffer damage from rocks and pebbles, hail, and other causes. It’s tempting to leave it cracked, because, after all, your car is still running, and there are no holes in it, so it’s fine, right? Why spend the money, if you don’t have to? However, there are some reasons you might not have been aware of and that you should consider fixing your windshield as soon as it cracks.

  • The crack can expandwindshield crack spreading

First of all, it’s good to know that if your windshield sustains a crack, and you leave it, it won’t stay like that. Instead, it will continue to expand, cracking further and further, on an increasingly wide surface. That is not only displeasing visually, but it is dangerous – you don’t know when something might hit your car and break your windshield for good.

  • The crack affects your visibility

Depending on the size and the area where it is sustained, a crack in your windshield can affect your visibility, sometimes in a major way. And even if it’s a small crack over to the side, where it wouldn’t interfere, there is always the possibility of it expanding. Before you know it, you’ll have a windshield that is cracked beyond repair, and that doesn’t offer you the visibility you need to drive safely. This means that, in the end, you have to replace the whole thing.

  • The crack compromises the safety and integrity of your vehicle

Believe it or not, your windshield is very important to the structural integrity of your car. The windshield supports your roof. Did you know that? Also, it contributes to helping airbag deployment, not to mention that it saves you from being thrown out of the car, in case of an accident of any kind. A cracked windshield is a weak windshield that is not 100% safe. Every single time you drive your car with your damaged windshield, you are possibly risking your safety.

  • Driving with a cracked windshield is illegal

That’s right, you are not legally allowed to drive around with a damaged windshield and should inspection come, you will be charged for it accordingly. Police officers may let you off only with a request for you to fix it or replace it, should you get into trouble with them, but the law is there for a reason. And that reason is the same safety concern mentioned above.

In conclusion, when your windshield gets damaged, the appropriate course of action is to fix it or replace it. Not only is it ugly, but it can also be very dangerous to continue to drive around with a cracked windshield, which is why the law forbids it. Don’t compromise your safety and don’t wait to fix your windshield.