Windshield damage can happen to anyone. Imagine you are driving on the interstate cruising along at the speed limit, and suddenly a piece of debris comes flying off the truck in front of you, smacking against your windshield. You look for damage and see a small crack at the point of impact. What do you do?
Dangers of Ignoring Windshield Damage
You might think that a small crack that is not in your direct line of sight is harmless. If ignoring windshield damage sounds like a decision you would make, please understand that this could put you in danger at some point in the near future. If you don’t do anything, that crack can expand and increase your risk of injury if you should be in an accident.
According to the Auto Glass Safety Council, the windshield provides up to 45% of the cabin’s structural integrity if you are involved in a front end collision, and up to 60% in a rollover. You may need to replace your windshield to have that kind of protection. If the damage is in your line of sight, then it is imperative that you immediately deal with the problem. Have a professional evaluate the damage and make suggestions as to what you need to do. Whatever you do, don’t ignore a crack in your windshield.
How Auto Glass is Made
Auto glass is manufactured to specifications to keep you safe. The windshield is manufactured with three layers pressed together. The outer layer is glass, the middle layer is a plastic named Poly-Vinyl Butyral, and the inner layer is glass. This design offers you significant safety. The plastic layer keeps the damage outside your vehicle.
Things to Consider When Replacing a Windshield
The ideal choice is to replace the windshield with an original equipment manufacturer (OEM) windshield. OEM glass is the same glass used by the maker of your car. It is safer than aftermarket glass, which may not be made to manufacturers standards. It will also be properly designed to fit your specific vehicle.
Another consideration is to be sure that your new windshield is installed by a certified professional. This is very important, because these professionals have been trained on the correct method to properly install your replacement windshield, using a quality adhesive to ensure your maximum safety. An improperly installed windshield can make you more vulnerable in an accident. For example, the windshield provides support to the roof of the car. This can be a very important safety feature in a collision or rollover.
What about insurance?
In general, insurance will cover windshield replacement if you have comprehensive coverage. If you only have liability coverage, insurance will not cover windshield repair or replacement. You may still have to pay the deductible. For your own safety and that of your family, don’t let paying a deductible stop you from replacing that damaged windshield.