To you, a cracked windshield is an annoyance whether it happens during the dog days of summer or smack dab in the middle of a frigid winter.  But to a good auto glass repair company, the summertime heat plays a major role in how they approach your damage.

Why?

Because hot weather and windshields don’t really mix.  Specifically, it’s the change in temperature that’s the problem.  After all, if it’s 100° outside, you’re likely going to have the air conditioner cranking at full blast inside your car.  Sure, you’ll feel cool and comfy, but all of that cold air will be blowing on your windshield — and that’s where the problem lies.

One side of your windshield is getting blasted by cold air, while the other side is getting blasted by the hot outdoor air.  That dramatic difference in temperatures can cause an existing chip or crack to spread across your windshield.

But that’s not the only risk you face during the summer.

If you use the wrong auto glass repair company — and they don’t know how to adjust their work during the heat of the summer — you can actually wind up with more damage!  So, how do you prevent your auto glass repair technician from turning an annoyance into a full-blown problem?

See if they place their hand on the windshield before doing anything else.

If the windshield is too hot, a number of problems can arise — including a breakdown in the windshield’s internal safety layer and resin that cures before it has time to completely cover the damage.

The rule of thumb that auto glass experts go by is testing the temperature of the glass with their hands.  If the windshield is too hot for them to leave their hand on comfortably for a few seconds, it’s too hot to repair.  That’s why a good windshield repair expert will NEVER work on a hot day before doing this test first!

See if they have a digital thermometer to do a secondary temperature test.

The hand-on-windshield test is a good start, but you need more than that.  An expert technician will use a digital thermometer to take the windshield’s temperature, and if it’s over 100°, they’ll know to cool it before he begins working.

Find out how they are going to cool the windshield.

As we’ve already discussed, dramatic temperature changes can damage your windshield.  So, if your auto glass technician thinks it’s a good idea to pour cold water on your hot windshield or to turn the air conditioner on full blast and point the vents at your hot windshield, they are not the experts they claim to be!

A good way to cool the windshield gradually is to use the floor vents in your car’s air conditioner.  That way, cold air will slowly make its way up to the windshield, instead of blasting it.

Ask them if they are going to warm up the resin first.

One of the most common problems that pops up during a summertime repair is an auto glass technician using resin that’s colder than the windshield.  It may not seem like a big deal, but cool resin can actually make the existing damage worse — or even cause brand new damage!

That’s why an expert technician will test the temperature of the resin along with the temperature of the windshield.  If the resin’s temperature is more than 10° lower than the windshield’s temperature, they will know they need to make some adjustments.

Now that you know what an expert SHOULD do, it will be easy to see if your auto glass repair company is doing everything right.  If they’re not, find another one.  Your windshield is too important to risk!

Ugh, you’ve just gotten a chip or a crack in your windshield.  You know you’ve got to call a windshield repair company, but you’re way too busy to take care of it today.  So, what do you do about the damage in the meantime?

You protect it from getting worse!

Considering you count on your windshield to protect you from the elements — and all of the dangers that are lurking out on the open road — you can’t afford to have it compromised in any way.  In fact, many auto experts list the windshield as the third most important safety feature in a car — right behind the seatbelts and the airbags.  Because it’s responsible for so much, protection is the name of the game when it comes to windshield repairs.

But you’re no auto glass technician.  What can YOU do to protect your windshield and prevent that small chip or crack from turning into a complete disaster?

Just follow these 3 tips:

1.  Avoid the temptation to wash the damage

Dirt can create big complications for an otherwise-routine windshield repair, so you need to do everything possible to keep the damaged area clean until an expert repair technician can fix it.

But whatever you do, DON’T wash it!

Water and glass cleaner can make their way into your crack or chip — and, eventually, into the inner safety layer of your windshield.  If this happens, your windshield may have to be replaced, instead of just repaired.  Even if your safety layer remains intact, if moisture gets stuck inside your crack or chip, it can prevent the resin from adhering properly.  Or, moisture can mix in with the resin and cause it to discolor down the road.

Bottom line — you’ve got to keep your damaged windshield dry!  If you absolutely have to clean it, wipe it off with a dry, lint-free towel.

2.  Tap into the power of tape

You know that clear packing tape that you use to seal up boxes?  Well, it can be a great TEMPORARY solution for your windshield!  Just place a piece over the crack or chip, and it will protect the damage from being assaulted by moisture and dirt.  Because this type of tape is completely clear, you won’t have to worry about it obstructing your view.

Just remember, all tapes are not created equal!  If you think you can get the same results from scotch tape, duct tape, masking tape, or painters’ tape, think again.  Aside from potentially blocking your view of the road, these types of tape aren’t capable of keeping moisture and dirt out of your damage like clear packing tape is.

3.  Don’t put off your call to the repair shop

OK, so you’ve got a clean windshield and clear packing tape firmly covering the damage.  You’re good to go for awhile, right?

Wrong!

The tape may keep moisture and dirt out of the damage, but it’s not strong enough to keep the chip or crack from spreading.  Unfortunately, all it takes is a speed bump, a pothole, a strong slam of your car door, or an extreme change in temperature to turn your minor windshield damage into a major problem.  In fact, even parking your car out in the bright sunlight can make your existing damage worse!

So, no matter how busy you are, call an auto glass repair shop ASAP.  Doing so can save you a bunch of money and frustration later!  And, as an added benefit, some auto glass repair companies offer mobile service, so you won’t even need to take time off from work to get your windshield fixed as they will come to you

To see how to protect the chip or crack in your windshield prior to getting it repaired, click here to watch a short YouTube video.

NWRA Code of Conduct and Why It’s Important!

March 6, 2014

If you’re like most people, you’re going to search online for a windshield repair company when a chip or crack pops up.  And, if you’re like most people, you’re going to see companies brag that they adhere to standards and have a code of conduct. So, What Exactly Does NWRA Mean? For starters, NWRA stands […]

Read the full article →