A windshield that’s been damaged in some way (even if it’s just a tiny crack) can leave you wondering whether it’s time to replace it yet. On the one hand, you know that windshield replacement is a costly endeavor, especially if your insurance doesn’t cover it. Then again, you’re also quite aware that if you don’t get it replaced in time, there might be severe consequences.
Not all damaged windshields need replacement
The truth is, you can have a broken windshield and still drive around with it for a few months… or years! A damaged windscreen doesn’t have to be replaced – not always, at least. Repairing it is also an option if the damage is too minimal to warrant a complete replacement.
Windshield repairs are much cheaper and cost an average of $99.
Windshield replacement doesn’t have to be expensive
If you’re paying out of pocket, windshield replacement is usually priced at $350. Though it could definitely cost you more based on your car’s size and make, or if you’re opting to have it tinted.
However, there are auto repair shops offering payment plans. This will allow you to space out the cost of replacing a windshield, so there’s really no need to worry. All you have to do is find the right shop to handle the job.
How can I tell if my windshield needs to be repaired or replaced?
Spotting a windshield that needs repairs or replacement is best left to the discerning eye of professionals. But this doesn’t mean you have to wait for their expert opinion. Follow these simple guidelines below so you’ll know what to expect.
Step 1: Check the size of the damage
As a general rule of thumb, a crack shouldn’t exceed a dollar bill in length. Anything longer would mean that a windshield needs replacement.
A crack less than 6 inches can be repaired at home with a DIY repair kit. If it spans from 6 to 8 inches and seems shallow, you can take it to the shop for possible repairs. However, any deep crack will require that your windshield be replaced. That’s because they’re more likely to spread, so there’s no point in repairing them.
Step 2: Check the amount of damage
Most cases of windshield damage are minimal and affect no more than 1 to 2 areas although there are rare instances where a windshield will have multiple cracks and pockmarks spread throughout.
While this damage is relatively small in size, there’s usually too much You would have to replace your windshield as soon as possible. Otherwise, it might break further and shatter.
Step 3: Check the location of the damage
Finally, see where the breaks are. Cracks that are within the driver’s field of vision are a safety risk which obstructs your view. In which case, you have no other choice but to replace your windshield.
Damages near the sides or around the corners of your windshield are impossible to repair. These are the weakest parts of the auto glass and there’s no guarantee that they won’t crack any further if repaired. In these instances, windshield replacement is your only option.