Windshield cracks can be one of the most common and hazardous forms of damage that your car can take on over the years. Sadly, many instances of cracked windshields can be attributed to bad luck, but that doesn’t mean that you can’t take measures to limit the disruption of these cracks and chips emerging and growing.
But what types of damage can impact your windshield? And how can you repair these cracks and chips? Let’s take a deeper look at some of the most common forms of windshield damage and how to repair them.
Firstly, it’s important to understand the differences between cracks and chips on your windshield. These can be caused by different factors and could require different levels of care.
Prevention is always better than cure, and to avoid chips you can take a number of precautionary measures, such as:
- Driving carefully on gravel roads to prevent kicking up stones and rocks
- Leaving a safe distance between yourself and the car in front to avoid debris hitting your windshield
- Trying to avoid following heavy vehicles that could kick up flying debris
- Parking indoors and away from busy roads
To avoid cracks, you can take measures such as:
- Avoiding temperature extremes that can put stress on your windshield
- Checking regularly for chips that could grow into cracks if left unattended
Although some of these measures are unavoidable in certain circumstances, it’s certainly worth taking a moment to investigate your windshield to check whether any new chips or cracks have formed before they become a major problem.
It’s important to understand the different types of chips and cracks that your windshield can sustain to be better prepared to fix them should the need arise. The most common forms of damage include:
Edge cracks are the most common form of windshield crack, and typically begin within two inches of the edge of the screen. Although they don’t tend to impede the view of the driver immediately, they are liable to grow over time and become a major hazard.
Star breaks tend to consist of a series of small cracks that lead away from an impact in a starburst pattern. These types of cracks can be problematic due to the number of cracks that it can produce that are liable to grow over time.
Particularly prominent on older motors that have undergone years of stress causing the glass to weaken, stress cracks generally require an immediate windshield replacement.
Combination breaks feature multiple windshield cracks converging at the same time, such as a star break and a bullseye chip. This type of break can occur when your windshield is subjected to significant levels of damage, and will typically result in an entire windshield replacement.
Bullseyes tend to take the form of a small circle surrounded by a larger circle, hence the name ‘bullseye’ in reference to the center of a dart board. These chips typically occur when a piece of debris chips the glass of the windshield but avoids causing a crack to emerge.
Half moons take a similar style to bullseye cracks, but the impact takes on a different shape that doesn’t quite reach a full circle in terms of the damage sustained.
If you’ve noticed that your windshield is cracked, chipped, or damaged, there are plenty of measures you can take to ensure that you’ll be able to see clearly while driving without the risk of distracting windshield damage.
The first thing to emphasize is that you should always work with certified experts when it comes to your windshield. Although you may have contacts with experience in auto repair, the fact that your windshield’s condition is essential for safe driving means that you should ensure that no corners are cut. How much is a windshield replacement? This will depend on your vehicle and the professionals that you’re working with.
If you’ve identified a crack, cover it with tape. This can help to bring back some stability for the windshield and to prevent a more severe crack from forming.
It’s also imperative that you don’t leave your windshield cracks or chips for too long. These issues can worsen at a rapid rate depending on the severity of the crack.
While it can be tempting to use cheap glass replacement materials to save money, you risk finding yourself in a similar situation sooner rather than later by cutting corners on repair work.
Windshield damage is one of the most common and frustrating forms of damage you can sustain to your car. Because it directly affects your vision on the road, it’s important to give even the smallest of cracks the attention they deserve. By acting quickly and decisively, you can help to stop the nuisance of a windshield crack becoming a major safety issue.