When you rely on your vehicle each day, even a minor chip or crack in the windshield can throw a wrench in your plans. It’s a safety hazard. A chip – generally small in size – can eventually worsen into a large gouge. As for a crack, we’ve all seen the spider webbing of serious windshield damage. But can you repair or replace your glass in such cases? Which is the best option? Let’s dive in and find out!
Repairing or Replacing Windshield Glass
It is unfortunate, but most side windows and back glass in a car is tempered glass. It cannot be repaired, only replaced. But your front windshield? That’s made of laminated glass. It is tough, versatile, and can be repaired under the right circumstances.
Overall, the size of the windshield damage will be the deciding factor. If the crack or chip is too large, then even the best technician cannot repair the damage. Even so, there is a limit on what can be safely repaired and put back on the road.
For a chip, the upper limit is three inches. For a crack, it’s 14 inches. If the size of the damage is larger than these measurements, then the windshield must be replaced.
Next, the depth of the damage must be factored into the equation. If the damage goes through the outer and inner layer of glass, it is too deep for a simple windshield repair. Essentially, a windshield is made of three layers: an outer layer, a plastic interlayer, and an inside layer of glass. If the glass is compromised, then the vehicle is compromised.
Lastly, the location of your windshield damage makes a difference. If the damage extends towards the outer edge of the glass pane, it’s likely the integrity of the entire windshield is compromised. As such, it won’t last on the road. You would be a serious hazard on the road.