Driving places your vehicle under a great deal of unavoidable stress over time, which may cause it to need repairs and replacements. From replacing tires and changing the oil to installing new wiper blades, these tasks are necessary for your vehicle's performance, value, and safety. Considering your windshield is an imperative part of driving in a safe manner, placing importance on this piece of glass is also necessary. Although common, minor chips and cracks in your windshield can become serious issues without proper care. Not only do these cracks impair your vision while driving, but they can quickly spread, decreasing your vision even further and increasing the chance that the glass will shatter completely. The average insurance claim to replace a broken windshield is $400, but you can reduce this cost by preventing the damage from growing larger. Using this guide, you can stop a crack or chip from spreading across your entire windshield.
As soon as you notice a crack or a chipped area of your windshield, move into action to prevent further damage to your auto glass. Moisture, dirt, leaves, and road debris will accumulate quickly in small cracks, increasing the size and width of the crack or chip. This buildup can cause the damage to spread quickly across your entire windshield, so covering the crack or chip is important.
Place a simple piece of clear tape over the crack as a quick fix. This will prevent rain, sleet, or debris from making the crack or chip a home.
The clear tape will prevent rain, sleet, snow, humidity, and road debris from building up inside the crack or chip, but it is not a permanent fix. Once you arrive home, consider using clear nail polish to make the repair stronger.
Remove the clear tape and wipe the windshield down with a clean cloth. Then, apply a layer of clear nail polish over the chip or the crack. Allow it to dry for a few minutes before applying a second coat.
The nail polish will fill and seal the damaged part of the glass, preventing debris and moisture from getting into it and spreading the chip or crack further.
An excessive amount of sun and heat can also cause a chip or crack to spread, so be sure to park your vehicle in a garage or under a shady area until you are able to get it repaired.
While outside heat can damage your windshield further, any excessive temperature inside the vehicle can also cause a crack or chip to spread. For the best protection, avoid running your vehicle's heat or air conditioner for long periods of time.
Visit your local auto parts store or discount retailer and purchase a repair kit. These inexpensive kits include everything you need to protect chips and cracks, preventing them from spreading further. Most repair kits include an injector tool and either an epoxy or adhesive filler. After adding the filler agent to the injector, you place the tool directly in the middle of the damaged area and begin filling it in with the adhesive.
While the kits offer similar results to the nail polish, they are a more convenient option to use if you are out and about. Of course, it is important to note that these kits will not repair every type of windshield crack. The injected filler will repair chips and short cracks, but they are not effective on longer, wider cracks or smaller damage to the windshield surface.
Chips and cracks in your windshield are common issues, but they do not have to affect your driving ability or become an expensive replacement. Using this guide and the help of an automobile glass specialist, you can repair chipped, cracked windshield before they become larger, more expensive issues to replace. Look for auto glass repair in your local area for more help.