Windshield repair technology has changed dramatically over the years so that the methods available today can vary widely, and sometimes rapidly depending on the specific repair shop. In general larger chips, cracks, and small damage can all be repaired quite easily. But what about those smaller holes? Unfortunately, the techniques for repairing small windshield damage have changed little in a hundred years. We’ll look at what can be done, how often it’s repaired, and how much it costs.
Windshield Repair offers windshield repair or replacement services, but only a few offer the full range of services to deal with all of the windshield repair needs that occur over the years. Typically, the only thing that all glass repair shops do is replace windshield repairs. These are typically only offered by companies that focus on this narrow type of repair since the other types of repairs require different skill levels and additional equipment that most glass repair shops don’t have.
One thing is common from company to company. All of them will take small chips, cracks, and other damage without too much delay, and usually within the same day. In some cases, a small chip may not be repaired at all, but instead might need to be sanded down and painted over. And occasionally, the damage from a single event may need to be repaired, regardless of whether or not it’s caused by the “normal” wear and tear.
Some windshield repairs take far less time than others, depending on their nature and location. A small chip in a windshield that simply won’t budge can often be fixed by placing adhesive below the chip. This works because the adhesive is a solvent and allows the liquid underneath to seep through and bond to the chip. Chips caused by severe impact or fall often require entirely different techniques, depending on their composition and the severity of the damage. These include removal of the chips altogether or replacement of the windshield. While these methods take longer than chip-and-crack repairs, they often require little recovery time, since they’re so simple to perform.
The main difference between these two options is the level of recovery time required. Chips that are easily fixed with adhesive are quickly replaced, allowing the vehicle to continue on its way after a shortstop. However, in the case of a crack or fracture, both the chip and the crack must be fixed together before a new windshield can be installed. This requires the auto glass specialists to take additional steps to ensure the integrity of the glass, as well as to fill any gaps and repair any breaks before the vehicle is returned to service. In addition to these potentially long and tedious repairs, the added risk of auto glass replacement increases the cost of windshield repair.
When the large chip or crack repairs are necessary, auto glass specialists are likely to suggest windshield repair instead of chip and crack replacement. Typically, the cost of repair will be less than the cost of replacement. If the damage is severe, however, windshield repair may be the best option, since it ensures that the vehicle’s structure is not at risk.
It’s important to remember that damage from chipping and cracking may not always be a major concern, even when the chips are readily visible. Small cracks might not seem like much, but over time, if they become larger, chipping and cracking can easily progress to more significant problems. For this reason, many auto glass specialists will offer a free consultation to determine whether or not a windshield repair is the best option for the situation. If a chip or crack is fairly inconspicuous, an experienced technician might be able to repair the chip or crack using his or her own specialized equipment.
If a chip or crack is larger or is more severe, the auto glass specialist might suggest windshield repair instead of a new windshield. Even when the crack is not large, it’s important to make sure that it is sealed against the elements. A thick layer of sealant can keep water and cold from entering the crack and expanding, which will help prevent cracking and chipping. Some crack repairs require that the crack is filled to keep water out, but this often increases the price of the job. For this reason, many professionals prefer to seal small chips and cracks to ensure that they are protected against the elements.