Is It Safe to Drive with a Cracked Windshield?
Driving around with a crack in your front auto glass is never a good idea. If the damage is a chip, those kinds of defects can usually be repaired. A crack is different. A crack can limit your vision or cause light effects that can distract you when you are driving. A crack can also weaken the integrity of your windshield and, ultimately, the frame of your vehicle in case of a rollover accident.
Small cracks can become larger cracks over time. Moisture can get into the crack and ultimately into the layers of your laminated glass windshield. Along with temperature, the crack will quickly spread. Dirt can also get inside the cracks, causing the cracks to widen and spread. Finally, bumps in the road may be all it takes for that small crack to get just a bit longer.
As soon as you notice a chip or crack, we recommend that you bring your vehicle to an auto glass repair shop for a chip repair or complete windshield replacement for your peace of mind.
10 Reasons Why Not to Wait to Get Your Windshield Fixed.
Back Windshield Damage
The rear glass of your vehicle is located opposite your windshield and acts as a counterpoint to help your vehicle retain its rigid frame in the case of an accident, while also protecting the vehicle occupants. Just like windshield damage, you should take rear auto glass damage very seriously. A single chip or crack could put you and your passengers at risk.
Unlike layered windshield glass, back auto glass is made in a similar fashion as all the other forms of glass in your car. The side windows, vent glass, sliders, quarter glass, and sunroof are all made with the same material, which is known as tempered glass. Unlike the other forms of glass, however, the rear auto glass is strengthened by thermal treatments so that it can withstand blunt force. After heating the glass to around 1200 degrees in a tempering furnace and then rapidly cooling the glass in a process called quenching, the back glass pane becomes four to five times stronger than before the tempering process.
While the back glass is strong, the pane can shatter. Don’t worry about sharp shards of glass, however. When the back auto glass breaks, the pieces are tiny and sand-like, giving it the common nickname “safety glass.”
In some cases, back auto glass, like the other panes of glass in your car, can seem to shatter as if something hit it when nothing actually hit it at all. This is a rare occurrence but usually happens when a crack occurs and then gets worse over time. It’s only when temperature variation of some other type of stress factor occurs that the glass finally gives way.
Repair Auto Glass or Have it Replaced?
In many cases, windshield or back glass repair is covered by your insurance. Your auto glass repair shop should be able to work closely with the insurance company to get your windshield or rear auto glass repaired or replaced.
If your auto glass can be repaired, which is often the case for cracks less than the length of a dollar bill and small chips, this will usually be free of charge if the insurance company picks up the tab.
If your windshield or back auto glass needs to be replaced entirely, you may encounter some costs, such as paying the insurance deductible. The total out-of-pocket expenses you could incur for replacement depends on your policy and type of auto glass being replaced.
The only way to determine if your auto glass can be repaired or if you need to have a complete windshield or back windshield replacement is to have your vehicle assessed by a qualified auto glass repair expert.
Get a Free Estimate for Auto Glass Damage
When your auto glass bears a chip or crack, seeing the defect can quickly ruin your day. If the chip or crack is left too long, you could face even more damage. Cracks that lengthen can obscure your vision, leading to accidents. Some police officers will even give you a ticket for cracked auto glass, as it is considered a driving impediment. Cracked auto glass is also a safety hazard, which is why you should always have auto glass damage taken care of as soon as you can.
At Sir Auto Glass in Portland, Oregon, we offer mobile auto glass repair service. We can provide you with chip and crack repair and complete windshield and back auto glass replacement for fees you can afford. We can work with you and your insurance company and guarantee a quality installation to ensure your auto glass always holds up as it should. Improve the value of your vehicle and keep yourself and your occupants safe with auto glass done right. Have you sustained auto glass damage? Call now for a free estimate, and we can get you back on the road with your auto glass intact in no time.