Your windshield plays an even more important role than just blocking you and your passengers from the elements as you are driving. It also plays an integral role in maintaining the structural integrity of your vehicle during an accident, especially in the event of a rollover.
But your windshield is also one of the components of your vehicle that is most susceptible to damage. It is extremely common for a rock or other small piece of road debris to fly up, hit your windshield, and cause a crack or chip in the glass. If this has happened to your windshield, it is not something to ignore.
It should be addressed ASAP to prevent further damage and ensure that your windshield can properly keep you and your passengers protected. A small chip or crack can get worse if ignored for too long, and then you’re looking at a need for a cracked windshield repair or replacement versus a simple windshield chip repair.
It is important, though, to have it professionally repaired by auto glass repair experts who have the experience, knowledge, and quality materials to do it right. To help ensure you do choose a top auto glass repair shop for chipped windshield repair, it is important to have more background on windshield damage and auto glass repair. For that, we’ve got you covered!
In this guide, we’ve addressed common questions on types of windshield chips, how to determine if windshield repair is possible for your chip, how to ensure your windshield is repaired by a high-quality professional, and exactly what happens during the repair.
The Most Common Types of Windshield Chips and Cracks
Windshield chips can come in a variety of different forms or patterns. Some of them can be repaired fairly easily, while some types are much more difficult and could mean it is safer to replace the windshield.
Whether the damage can be addressed with professional auto glass repair or not will depend on the size, shape, and location of the damage. Here are several of the most common types of chips that occur in windshields:
Bullseye Windshield Chip
This is one of the most common types of chips that occur in windshields. A bullseye chip will appear as a small, fairly dark spot with small rings around it. These chips can usually be repaired enough to sufficiently prevent the damage from spreading further, though the original point of impact may still be slightly visible after repair.
Partial Bullseye Windshield Chip (aka Half Moon Chip)
Very similar to a bullseye chip, these chips will only have a half circle in the middle. A half-moon chip will happen when a rock or similar piece of road debris hits the windshield at an angle. Sometimes this can make them more difficult to sufficiently repair to prevent further cracking.
Windshield Star Crack
A windshield star crack generally has several small cracks outward from the center of a chip. The possibility of this windshield crack being repaired will depend on exactly how long these cracks are.
Combo Windshield Chip
If the windshield is hit hard enough, sometimes it can result in what is known as a combo chip or break. These will be a combination of two or more of the previously mentioned types of windshield chips. The exact size and location of the damage will determine if it can be adequately repaired.
How To Tell If a Windshield Chip Can Be Repaired
If a rock has hit your windshield and chipped it, one of the first things you may be wondering is if it can be repaired or not. The good thing is that not all windshield damage means a need for a total windshield replacement. In many cases, professional windshield repair will be able to restore the structural integrity of the glass.
But that will depend on a variety of factors, including:
- Is the chip in your line of vision as you drive? If the damaged area is in your line of sight, then it is a safety issue, and the glass will need to be replaced. Even if it could be repaired, repaired glass can sometimes end up slightly foggy, which could still impair your vision while driving.
- How large is the chip? For a safe and effective chipped windshield repair, the chip has to be no larger than 1 inch in diameter. The chipped area also can’t have any hairline cracks coming from it. In a hot climate, as we experience in Tucson during the summer months, small windshield cracks from a chipped area can grow quickly.
- Is the chip deep? How deep the chip is in the windshield is also one of the largest determining factors. For it to be repaired, the damage cannot be deep enough to reach the middle layer of vinyl. And regardless of if there is no damage to the outside of the windshield, if the interior glass layer is damaged, the windshield will need to be replaced.
- Is the chip near the outer edge of the windshield? If it is, the damage can quickly grow in size and jeopardize the strength of the vehicle’s roof structure, reducing the protection it will provide in the event of a rollover crash. So, the windshield will need to be replaced if there are any chips or cracks near the outer edge.
If you are still not sure whether your chipped windshield needs to be repaired or replaced, our team here at Max Auto Glass can help. Our technicians can assess the damage and advise on the best solution.
Leave Chipped Windshield Repair to the Professionals
As with windshield replacement, when you need chipped windshield repair, you should leave it up to an experienced auto glass professional (like Max Auto Glass). It may be tempting to try to fix it yourself with a quick DIY solution, but this can worsen the damage and end up costing you more time and money.
You can be confident that your vehicle’s windshield is in competent hands when you use a trained windshield expert. They will have the specialized experience and knowledge needed to properly handle windshield damage and can determine the best course of action.
Whether it is determined that repair is possible or a replacement is needed, they will follow all the necessary safety measures and perform the service up to industry-best standards.
How to Choose a Quality Auto Glass Shop
Carefully choosing the auto glass repair shop you go with will ensure you get high-quality windshield repair service that you can trust. To do that, there are some important questions you should be asking, including:
- Are high-quality products/materials used? True auto glass professionals know that inferior resins and adhesives won’t perform well. Using anything but high-quality products could endanger you and your passengers.
- Are the shop’s technicians certified? An auto glass repair shop that follows strict training, service, and quality guidelines will have technicians that are certified by both the AGSC (Auto Glass Safety Council™) and Dow Chemical Co.
- Is their work warrantied? A high-quality auto glass repair shop will stand behind their work, so ask about their warranty coverage. This will help you be sure that you’ve found a shop that you can trust.
- Does the shop have workers’ compensation and liability insurance? This coverage will protect you if something happens while your windshield repair is being done.
What Happens During a Windshield Chip Repair Service?
During a windshield chip repair service from Max Auto Glass, the industry-favored vacuum pressure repair process will be used:
- In the damaged area, the tiny glass particles will be carefully scraped out, or a tiny hole will be drilled through the top layer of glass to release any trapped air.
- A glass resin injector will be secured around the damaged area.
- Once the injector tool is sealed around the area, it will cycle between pressure and vacuum to infuse a clear, UV-curable glass resin into the chip on the outer glass layer. This restores the appearance and structure of the glass.
- Any excess resin is removed from the repair area.
- A UV light is used to cure/harden the resin, changing it from a liquid to a clear solid.
- The area is cleaned up and polished, if necessary, making the repair nearly invisible.
This process usually takes no more than about 30 to 40 minutes, but it is extremely effective in helping to restore the safety and structural integrity of the windshield.
Trust the Tucson Auto Glass Repair Experts
It’s easy to take for granted the important role your vehicle’s windshield plays when it’s in good condition. But when you end up with a chip or crack, it’s not something you can wait to have addressed. Having professional windshield crack repair done ASAP will prevent damage from getting worse and ensure the safety of you and your passengers.
Whether you need auto glass repair or replacement, here at Max Auto Glass, you can count on our expert technicians to only use high-quality materials and equipment and follow international safety standards.
Contact us today to schedule your service, and we’ll have you back on the road as safely and quickly as possible.