If you have a chip in your windshield, you may be tempted to let it slide unless the problem gets bigger. Here are some tips for assessing windshield damage and deciding whether to repair or replace.
When You Should Replace
First of all, it is possible to steady a minor crack so that the damage doesn't spread. You might try a glass glue to secure the pieces together. Some people also use duct tape as a temporary fix for a chipped windshield.
There are some times when you should consider a repair right away. If the chip is bigger than a quarter, then the glass is more vulnerable to becoming fully cracked and presenting a safety hazard. If the crack begins to extend beyond a few inches, that's also a good indicator that the problem isn't going to remain stable. If you have more than one chip or crack in your windshield, this can create some unpredictable pressure points on the windshield and become a liability. And always consider auto glass replacement if the crack is within your line of sight. The crack could become a distraction or visual impairment during a critical moment on the road, causing potential injury or greater car damage.
Reasons to Replace Your Windshield
Even if you don't meet any of the conditions above, there are several reasons why it's a good idea to replace your windshield. A cracked windshield can prevent some additional inquiry if you need to get your vehicle inspected for safety. The procedure is also a good idea because it is quick; a glass repair company can often fix the windshield in a single visit.
There are a few reasons to repair glass instead of replacing it as well. For one, it means that you get to keep the original manufacturer's glass in place. This can look great if you plan to sell the car, since aftermarket parts may not be as valuable to a buyer. Glass repair on an existing windshield also allows you to keep the original window seal; replicating a good window seal is more difficult than keeping the current one in place.
Another reason to repair a windshield is that it's often more likely to be covered by your insurer than a full glass replacement. While each insurer is different, windshield repair is often a recommended course of action for minor collisions. It's worth it to check with a local windshield repair company to see your options.