When it comes to minor, repairable windshield damage, you should know it typically comes in two forms – cracks and chips. Cracks usually create a long distinct line in the glass that can be less than an inch up to your windshield’s width. In most cases, they occur horizontally in wavy or a straight line. On the other hand, a chip is a type of damage that marks the point of impact. The point of impact can come in the form of a bulls-eye, or circular, a star break, which are small cracks forming outwards, a crack chip, which is less than an inch, and a partial bullseye.

Can you repair your windshield?

Whether you can repair your windshield or not, depends on a number of factors.

The size

Modern windshield repair technology has come a long way in the last few years. Depending on the experience and expertise of a repair company, you can have large cracks and chips easily repaired. Keep in mind that there is a limit on repair sizes, which depends on the previously mentioned types of damage. In addition, the matter of repair will also depend on the location of the damage and the equipment a repair shop has at its disposal. That is why you should always seek the services of reputable professionals, such as Auto Glass Express, in case your windshield has suffered either minor or severe damage.

The depth

2The depth is closely related to the damage itself. It is mainly in regards to how deep the type of damage has penetrated your windshield. Remember that a windshield is, in a way, a glass sandwich, which consists of an inside glass layer, a plastic interlayer, and a glass outer layer. Now, if the damage has completely penetrated both the inner and the outer layer, a repair would be almost impossible.

Damage location

Next up, let’s discuss the location of the damage, as it can greatly affect the effectiveness of the repair and the ability to perform it in the first place. If the damage reaches the glass’ outer edge, it is highly likely that the windshield’s structural integrity has been severely compromised. Given how the windshield is responsible for almost 70% of the structural strength in the case of a rollover, it should be properly replaced with a new one.

Also, if the damage is located within the driver’s line of sight, repairs should be also avoided. Despite all the technological advancements, windshield repairs can still lead to a certain amount of distortion, which can severely impair your road view.

Driver assistance systems

Finally, if there is some damage within various sensors, such as lane departure warning sensors, rain sensors, automatic braking systems, as well as other driver assistance systems, keep in mind that some of these devices might not be repairable. The majority of these sensors need to be in perfect mint condition, which means even the best, or the slightest, repairs can cause them to malfunction.

When should you replace your windshield?

3Of course, safety is critical when it comes to driving vehicles. It is no secret that many people think it is fine to drive around with small cracks in their windshield. This poses a great risk, not only to them but all other traffic participants. Therefore, if you notice something unusual with your windshield or if you think its structural integrity has been compromised, waste no time and have the windshield evaluated by the experts ASAP. They will then determine whether it should be repaired or replaced.