If you’ve lived in Arizona for any length of time, you know hail isn’t uncommon here. In fact, hail storms in recent years have caused around $4.5 billion in damage to homes, businesses, and vehicles in the state. Arizona is at the top of the list when it comes to insurance claims for broken windshields.
Whether it’s a hailstorm or a crash, you’re faced with several questions when you need auto glass repairs. Max Auto Glass has the answers for you. A windshield repair can be easier than you think!
Arizona Laws About Vehicle Windshields
Let’s start with the legal requirements in Arizona that pertain to vehicle windshields.
1. Local Laws
The first thing to check is any requirements regarding windshields within the local jurisdiction. You’ll probably discover that the local laws default to the state laws, but it doesn’t hurt to check.
Local law enforcement officers can use their discretion in pulling over drivers who appear to have a cracked windshield. The police officers also use their discretion in how they then handle the issue if the crack is obstructing the driver’s view. The officer can write a ticket, but most of these are “fix-it” tickets. If you get the windshield repaired or replaced, the fine may be waived.
2. State Laws
Passenger vehicles, motor trucks, and truck tractors—both publicly and privately owned—must have adequate windshields.
This is the most basic state requirement in Arizona. The windshield protects you and everyone in the vehicle if you’re in a collision, not only from flying debris but also if the vehicle rolls over. The windshield and its frame prevent the roof from crushing the occupants of the vehicle during a roll over. It also allows the airbags to inflate properly.
Here are the windshield exceptions in Arizona:
- No windshield is required on a motorcycle, golf cart, or ATV if purchased before June 17, 1998.
- No windshield is needed in classic, antique, and horseless-carriage-style vehicles.
For all other vehicles that are required to have windshields, Max Auto Glass recommends auto glass repairs or replacement for any chips, dings, or any other kind of damage before an accident occurs. Protect your family from injury or worse by getting all windshield damage fixed right away.
But what does “adequate windshield” mean?
How it’s defined is up to the police officer who stops you for a damaged windshield. Arizona law 28-957.01 doesn’t offer any definition or explanation for “adequate windshield” and “visual impairment.” Police officers interpret the law based on the specific situation. They must use their discretion, and they have the authority to decide whether the obstruction is enough to require repair or replacement.
If the officer deems the driver’s field of vision is being affected, it can result in a citation. You’ll be fined, and the amount varies from county to county. You’ll need to find a certified glass technician to repair the damage or replace the windshield if the police officer requires a safety inspection or repair. This is something every driver in Arizona should know.
3. Federal Vehicle Regulations Relating to Windshield Repairs
Federal laws are under the umbrella of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. Although the vehicle safety standards were developed for new vehicles, they are pertinent for auto glass repairs and replacements, too.
The federal vehicle regulations that deal with windshields prohibit the following:
- Multiple cracks that intersect each other or any other kind of damage
- Damaged areas larger than ¾ of an inch
- Damaged areas within three inches of each other
- Damage or discoloration in the center of the windshield
These regulations deal with many areas of auto glass, stating that the windshield “mitigates the chances of ejection through side windows during a crash.” You can see a summary of these standards here.
Now that you know the laws that affect windshields in Arizona, it’s important to take measures to stay compliant.
How To Stay Compliant with Auto Glass Repair Laws
The main thing to do to stay compliant is to have any chips, dings, cracks, or other windshield damage fixed immediately. It’s tempting to put repairs off, since it generally isn’t a major issue. Your budget may not be flexible enough to get a windshield replaced right away, so you hope the crack in the glass doesn’t get any bigger.
Delays like this are understandable but risky. Crashes happen in an instant, with no warning, and if the strength of your windshield is compromised by a crack, you’re putting the lives of others in jeopardy.
The second thing to do to be compliant with the law about windshields in Arizona is to know exactly what those laws are. If you’re confused about the laws, our professional service staff at Max Auto Glass are ready to answer your questions and make sure your vehicle meets all legal regulations.
Insurance Often Covers Windshield Repairs and Replacements in Arizona
Arizona requires auto insurance coverage on every motor vehicle driven within the state, as is true in most states. Your coverage doesn’t have to explicitly state that you have windshield coverage, but comprehensive coverage typically covers windshields.
Here’s some good news! If you have comprehensive insurance coverage and are a resident of Arizona, your insurance company is required to offer you a zero-deductible coverage option for windshield replacements. Make sure you always have your auto insurance card with you. If you’re stopped by a police officer, they’ll ask to see it if questions arise about windshield damage. You can also take a look at our promotions and offers to save on your next windshield repair or replacement.
Max Auto Glass Shops Are the Windshield Repair Experts!
Still have questions? Max Auto Glass is ready to help evaluate your windshield problem to make sure you’re in compliance with the law. Your windshield repair or replacement can be scheduled and completed as quickly as possible. Don’t forget about our mobile repair service, either!