The windshield is one of the vital parts of the car. And once it is cracked, it is not usable, not pretty, and can result in some precarious situations. Caused by the Earth’s fauna and different types of road debris, windshield cracks are one of the most popular maintenance issues you can have with your car. So, if your car’s windshield is cracked, repairing it is cheaper than replacing it. Repairing your windscreen will depend on the factors like location, type, thickness, and size of the fissure or blemish. But according to the experts, the windscreen can only be repaired if it is smaller and shallow than 40mm in diameter. At the most, two chips can be repaired. But it is better to replace the windscreen once you notice a crack. It is because even the minor cracks aggravate within a few days.
So, here are the tips to follow before or when you repair your windshield:
1. Decide whether it needs immediate attention: Check where the crack is located. Is it obscuring your view or off to the side? If the crack interferes with your scope to see the road, you must deal with it immediately by taking the vehicle to the windscreen shop. But if it is not improving the ability to check the road, grab the ruler.
2. Avoid dirt and debris: One of the biggest things to protect your car windshield from is dirt. If dirt fills the crack, it would make the repair more complicated. But it never means that you have to reach for a bucket or head for the car wash. And when water seeps into the crack, the repair process converts into a complete replacement. Use clear packing tape to keep the moisture and dirt away from the crack. And it will not obscure the view as well.
3. Avoid temperature extremes: When your car windshield has got a crack, remember that extreme cold is not good for a cracked windscreen. So, refrain from putting the defroster or air conditioner on high. Rather, moderately use the heater to defrost the windows gradually.
4. Park your vehicle indoors to avoid the sun: If your vehicle has got a crack, and you want to repair it instead of replacing it to save windscreen price, then protect the vehicle against sun and rain. Otherwise, the windscreen would heat up and allow the crack to expand.
5. Drive your vehicle carefully: Another effective way to ensure that the crack doesn’t get bigger before windscreen repair; you have to drive with full caution. This includes avoiding rough roads and steering clear of potholes. Besides, be careful when getting in or out of your car. Don’t slam the door or the trunk.
When to replace the windshield?
There are some instances when it becomes very important to replace your windscreen. One of the instances is that if there is a hole through the windshield, then you have to repair it ASAP. But in some cases, chips or smaller cracks can also lead to replacing your existing windshield. As per the rule of thumb, if you have 3 or more cracks in the windshield, then you have to replace it. Otherwise, the impacted windscreen would start losing the ability to withstand more impacts. Replacing the shield is also important if the crack in it is 14 inches or more than that.
Now let’s have a look at the tips for replacing your windshield effectively. You can either visit a windscreen specialist or can do the job on your own.
• Remove the trim: This is the first step to follow. Use a razor to remove it effectively while loosening the windshield.
• Remove the windshield: Once you remove the trim, the next step is to remove the AIG windscreen panel and lift it away from the vehicle. Do it carefully so that it doesn’t break.
• Clean out and make the Pinch Weld ready: After removing the windshield, the next step is to clean and prepare the pinch weld. Dust, dirt, and old urethane can build up to this place over time. Cleaning it out before installing the new windscreen is important to ensure that the new shield perfectly fits into the place.
• Apply urethane: After cleaning the pinch weld, apply urethane to the edges of the pinch weld. The urethane works as the adhesive or glue that holds the windscreen perfectly in place. So, apply it evenly while ensuring it doesn’t dry or set before the new windshield is put into the place.
• Install the new windshield: This is the last step of the windscreen replacement process. Place the new windshield carefully fitting over the hole on the car. Fit it properly within the pinch weld. Once you position it properly, push it into the place with suction bars and cups and held it there for several minutes. Remove the suction cups and bars when the urethane starts to set.