What to Do If There's a Crack on Your Car Windshield

A cracked windshield is not only an eyesore but also a safety concern. A small crack can quickly spread and compromise the structural integrity of your windshield. It’s important to address it promptly to avoid further damage and ensure your safety while driving. This guide provides a step-by-step approach to dealing with a cracked car windshield.

Tools and Materials You’ll Need:

  1. Clear adhesive tape
  2. Windshield repair kit (for small cracks)
  3. Clean cloth
  4. Razor blade (for advanced repairs)
  5. Auto glass professional (for extensive or severe cracks)

Step 1: Assess the Crack: Examine the crack’s size, location, and depth. If it’s smaller than a dollar bill (about 6 inches), you may attempt a DIY repair. If it’s extensive or affecting your line of sight, it’s best to seek professional help.

Step 2: Protect the Crack: Before you can take any further action, prevent the crack from spreading. Apply clear adhesive tape on both sides of the crack. This will help keep out dirt and moisture and offer temporary protection.

Step 3: Use a Windshield Repair Kit (for Small Cracks): If the crack is small and meets certain criteria, you can attempt a DIY repair using a windshield repair kit, which can be purchased at auto parts stores or online. Follow these steps:

  1. Clean the windshield: Ensure the area around the crack is clean and dry.
  2. Follow kit instructions: Different kits have slightly different procedures, so carefully read and follow the manufacturer’s instructions.
  3. Apply resin: Usually, you’ll apply a specialized resin to the crack using an applicator. It’s important to follow the guidelines for resin application and curing.
  4. Allow it to cure: The resin might need sunlight or a UV lamp to cure fully. Once cured, scrape off any excess resin and clean the area.

Step 4: Monitor the Repair: After the repair, keep an eye on the crack’s progress. If the repair seems stable and effective, it’s a positive outcome. However, if you notice the crack spreading or the repair failing, it’s time to seek professional help.

Step 5: Seek Professional Assistance (for Extensive Cracks): For larger cracks, cracks near the edge of the windshield, or if the DIY repair didn’t work, it’s best to consult a professional auto glass repair or replacement service. They have the expertise and tools to assess the damage and determine whether a repair or replacement is necessary.

Step 6: Avoid Extreme Temperature Changes: Sudden temperature changes can worsen cracks. Avoid using hot water or blasting cold air directly onto the windshield.

Step 7: Insurance and Coverage: Check your insurance policy to see if it covers windshield repair or replacement. Some policies have specific clauses for auto glass coverage.

Step 8: Preventive Measures: To minimize the risk of future cracks, maintain a safe following distance to avoid debris kicked up by other vehicles, and park your car in shaded areas during extreme heat.

A cracked windshield can compromise your safety and the structural integrity of your vehicle. Following these steps will help you take appropriate action, whether it’s a DIY repair for a small crack or seeking professional help for more extensive damage. Remember, safety should always be your top priority when dealing with automotive issues.

CategoryCar Tips