While driving your vehicle, it is not uncommon to have your windshield damaged or have your windows jammed. Cracks and chips are something that many vehicle glassesare subjected to;the reason for the damage may vary. But once such damagedoes take place, whether one will have to change the entire auto glass, or will a good repair work do the trick? There are many factors that decide this, that will be discussed further.
But first and foremost is to know the difference between a crack and chip. A chip will typically be seen as a star shaped damage on the glass, with lines coming outwards from the point of contact. A chip is recognized asthe point where the impact has occurred is clearly markedas the focal point of from where there are numerous cracks coming outwards. There will be debris as well. There are a few types of chips, let us see some of them:
Star Break: The kind of a chip that has multiple small cracks coming out from thecentral point.
Bull's eye:This is a clear cut kind ofcircularcrack in which the point of impact is well defined. It is generally more common in cases where the impact has come from a distance in high speed.
Partial Bull's eye:This is normally when the impact breaks speed midway, instead of it being a circular chip, the shape instead becomes half moon shaped.
Crack Chip:This is a small break that may be smaller than an inch in size. It may not be clearly defined as a crack or a chip.
A crack instead is a clear cut line that may vary in size right from being a small crack of less than an inch to a crack that is across the complete length of the glass.
Either ways, the final question remains if the glass will need to be completely repaired or will itmake do with a repair work? It is always best to visit a repair or replacement company that is reliable and affordable, check out https://www.glass.net/ for some great options. There are many factors that decide it like:
Size of the damage: Obviously, the smaller the size of the crack, more are the chances that it can be managed simply with a repair. The technology used to repair auto glass is improving by the day. So, if you visit a decently capable repair center, they will be able to repair a crack or a chip that is up to three inches big or even longer. However, the position of the crack is yet another crucial factor that may change the course of action.
The depth of the crack: This is inter related with the size of the crack. To explain this further, a windshield is basically a glass that is made up of 3 layers. The out layer is made of glass.
Then there is an inner layer which is made of plastic, and finally the last layer which is the innermost layer is made of glass again. So if the damage is deep enough to have covered all the three layers of the glass, then repairing in such cases seems unlikely.
The location of the crack: This is the single most important factor that decides whether the glass will need repair or will have to be completely replaced. The windshield is responsible for as much as 60% of the structural strength of the vehicle in case if there is a roll over. And so if the outer edge of the glass is damaged, it is always best that one replaces it, as it could put the structural integrity of the vehicle at risk.
Also if the crack is anywhere near the range of vision of the driver, it is best not to settle for a repair. As, no matter how good the repair work is, it will always leave some amount of distortion on the glass, and this could impair the view of the driver.
Another sensitive location where repair work is not enough is if the damage occurs anywhere around the sensors. Like if your vehicle has rain sensors, warning signals for lane departure,or where the automatic braking system is, or even in case of automated driver assistance system. As these sensors require a perfect view and any damage will break the sensors down.
When is it best to replace your auto glass?
Very often a small crack is ignored while driving, which ideally must not be the case. In case of a car collision or a roll over, it is the windshield that provides almost half of the structural integrity. And so a compromised windshield will only mean a compromised structural strength.
And so in case if a windshield replacement has been suggested the same must be done as soon as possible.
When can you repair the glass?
When the crack is on the window or the back glass or perhaps a small crack on an unimportant corner of the windshield, if repair will suffice and suggested the same can be done. It is however important that you visit only a reputable company to ensure you get the best work done at the most affordable possible price.