Severe or mild, windshield damage can severely impact the functionality of a working vehicle. A correctly fitted and fully functioning windshield provides structural support and keeps the driver and the passengers safe. In fact, it can be the deciding factor in a life and death situation.
The Role of Windshield in Providing Safety
Windscreens are built with sturdy materials such as laminated glass and polyvinyl butyral (PVB) that ensure maximum strength and protection. Here’s how they protect you from external factors.
Support in a Collision: In the unfortunate case of an accident, the windshield keeps you from getting crushed by providing structural support to the car.
Airbag support: Modern cars are equipped with airbags that deploy during impact. The windshield allows the bag to deploy correctly by bouncing it towards the driver and preventing an injury to the face.
Rollover Support: If your car skids off the road and starts rolling over, without a perfectly working windshield, you may be thrown out of the car and experience heavy injuries that may even prove fatal.
Preventive Measures to Limit the Damage
Since the fundamental purpose of a windshield is to protect you and the internal structure of the car, it endures a lot of damage. This results in cracks, scratches, and chips over time. However, a few preventive measures can limit deterioration significantly. Let’s take a look at some of them:
- When you’re driving fast, even a small rock can impact the integrity of a windshield, so we recommend slowing down during windy weather or when you’re in an area that has a lot of debris
- When driving through a forest or along roadside trees, keep your distance. Even seemingly harmless branches can cause damage
- Unless it’s an emergency and there’s no other way, don’t take your car out in stormy weather, especially if there’s heavy rain or a hailstorm
- Pay attention to small scratches that grow larger over time. Thoroughly inspect the windshield and windows at least once a week
- Don’t leave small chips unattended. Chips usually affect the outer surface of the glass and don’t account for significant damage. This may make you think it’s alright to leave them unattended, but they grow worse with the passage of time. Not only can they expand if your car experiences another impact, but they’re also vulnerable to catching debris and dust, making repairs more difficult and costly.
- During the summer, cars can get incredibly hot. To avoid pressure breakages, don’t immediately turn on the AC when you start the car, as sudden temperature changes can cause cracks. Similarly in winters, let the cold air slowly warm up instead of cranking up the heater as soon as you sit inside the car.
- Change the windshield wipers after 12–15 months depending on their use
- Keep your windshield clean at all times. Don’t let dust or grease accumulate on the glass.
- Most importantly, be a cautious driver and follow all the rules and regulations that are set in place for your safety.
Causes of Windshield Damage
Accidents can happen to even the most experienced and careful drivers, and in certain situations, it’s your own negligence that gets you into trouble. Let’s take a detailed look at common causes of windshield damage.
Car Accident: While minor incidents may only cause small cracks, head-on collisions and car crashes can result in a shattered windscreen. At this point, you have no option but to replace the whole thing.
Temperature: Glass can contract or expand depending on the temperature. If your car experiences a sudden shift in temperature, it can develop pressure cracks that may be minor but still pose a threat to the driver’s safety.
Quality of Glass: you’re more likely to experience problems if your windscreen’s glass is of low-quality or made using aftermarket products.
High Speed: When you drive around at high speed, the impact of anything that comes in contact with your windshield is higher. Even a small rock or just air can cause damage due to extreme pressure.
Flying Objects: Flying stones and rocks are likely to hit your windscreen as you pass through a construction site. Even when your car is parked, animals like cats and squirrels can jump on to the windshield from a height and cause a crack.
Roadside and Storm Debris: Hailstones, litter, tree branches, and other debris can potentially cause damage if they come into contact with the windshield.
Strong Vibrations: If you have a habit of slamming your car’s door, you’re causing damage to the windshield. With every vibration, the glass loses a bit of its structural integrity, ultimately resulting in cracks.
Faulty Fixture: If your new windshield is showing cracks without any of the above-mentioned reasons, the chances are that you may have been scammed by a low quality or incorrect installation.
What to Do With Damaged Windshield
Depending on the extent of the problem, you can either opt for a repair or replacement. Leaving the problem untreated isn’t an option so bring your car to us at Crystal Glass. We offer expert repair options using advanced equipment and skilled technicians.
For more than six decades, we’ve been the leading repair and Replacement Company in British Columbia, Langley and Maple Ridge. Want to book an appointment on call? Dial CALL 310-GLAS or get a free quote for the required services online.