Did you know that windshield problems are the #1 type of auto insurance claim in the USA?
Many of us experience chipped or cracked windshields at least one time in our driving histories. Cracks and chips in the windshield are a nuisance, but fortunately, in most cases, you can remedy windshield chip repairs and windshield crack repairs with the help of a reputable auto glass repair shop.
How do windshield chips and cracks get fixed? What happens to make the cracks and chips disappear?
How Windshield Chip Repairs Actually Work
- 1 How Windshield Chip Repairs Actually Work
- 2 Check The Type Of Windshield Chip
- 3 Windshield Repair Basics
- 4 What If The Windshield Cannot Be Repaired?
- 5 Call Liberty AutoGlass For All Of Your Windshield Repairs & Replacements
In this article, you will learn how windshield chip and crack repairs work.
Check The Type Of Windshield Chip
Examining the chip on the windshield is the first step.
Many types of cracks and chips exist. Whether or not they can be repaired will depend on the size of the chip as well as the style.
Crack On Windshield
A crack on the windshield consists of a single line extending from the point of impact.
If a crack is shorter than 12 inches long, it is fixable. However, if the crack is in the line of sight of the driver, a windshield repair should not be attempted. The reason is that the driver’s ability to see the road could be impaired by the repaired windshield crack. Long windshield cracks usually require a windshield replacement.
Bullseye Chip On Windshield
This type of crack resembles a bullseye. There is usually a central point of impact, surrounded by a dark circle.
A bullseye crack can often be repaired, provided it is smaller than an inch in diameter. However, if the location of the crack is directly in the driver’s line of vision, no repair should be attempted.
A small piece that is missing from the windshield is called a pit.
If the pit has not penetrated into the plastic layer that holds together the two layers of windshield glass, then the pit can be fixed. If the hole has penetrated the plastic interlay, then the car owner will need to replace the windshield.
Windshield Star Cracks
When several cracks radiate from a central point, this formation is called a star.
In most cases, a star that is smaller than 3 inches in diameter is repairable. However, if it is located within the driver’s direct field of vision, it cannot be repaired.
Combination Windshield Chips and Cracks
In some cases, a combination chip will show features of two or more types of cracks.
A combination crack can still be repaired if the total diameter is smaller than 2 inches, as long as it is not located in the driver’s direct field of vision.
Windshield Repair Basics
After it has been determined that the chip can be repaired, the next part of the procedure begins.
The exact details will vary from one company to the next. However, the basic procedures are similar in most cases and involve these steps.
Clean Out The Chipped Area On The Windshield
Cleaning out the cracked or chipped area is the first stage of repair.
There must be no debris or dirt in the crack or it will interfere with the process of repairing the windshield. In addition, it is important to remove any tiny bits of glass that might be in the crack. A sharp tool is inserted into the crack to remove any loose materials that may be present.
If there are fine cracks in the chip, it is useful to extend the cracks by applying pressure. This may appear to be counterintuitive, but the purpose is to allow the resin to flow better within the cracks and fill up the space.
Creating A Vacuum
Once the initial preparation has taken place, the crack repair tool will be used next.
Many types of crack repair tools are available, but in most cases, the good ones use the same principle. First, the correct amount of resin is used to fill the applicator and it is then attached to the windshield glass by using suckers. The tool is sealed to the windshield and a vacuum is created below the seal by using the applicator.
It is very important that no air is present in the crack as the type of anaerobic resins used will not cure properly if they are exposed to air.
Filling The Auto Glass Damage With Resin
Once all air has been eliminated, the auto glass resin will be forced into the windshield crack.
Once the resin starts to flow, it will quickly fill the windshield cracks with a clear liquid. The length of time this takes will depend on how big the crack is and the type of resin that is being used.
Curing The Windshield Repair
The resins used to repair windshield cracks are cured by exposure to UV light. This exposure makes the resins harden and bond the cracks in the windshield together.
The outside of the applicator tool should be cured at this time. This will cure resin that may have leaked from the seal. Resin that is not cured could negatively affect the integrity of the repair.
Repairing Pits In The Windshield
If you need to repair a chip and not merely a crack in the windshield, it means that there is a piece of glass missing.
This will require the small pit to be filled up. To fill the pit in the windshield will use more resin than is required to repair a crack. In most cases, pit resin is applied to the hole and then covered with clear tape to keep it in position.
Curing The Resin
In order to harden the resin and finish the repair, it is necessary to apply UV light from sunlight or a UV lamp. The amount and type of resin used will determine how long it will take to cure and harden.
Removing The Excess Resin
Smoothing out the repair so it is at the same level as the glass will allow the windshield wipers to work properly.
Excess resin can be scraped away by using a razor blade. This can be brushed off to create a smooth repaired surface.
What If The Windshield Cannot Be Repaired?
If you have a chip that is too large for a chip repair, you will probably require a new windshield. The certified auto glass technicians at Liberty AutoGlass are here to help you whether you need your windshield repaired or replaced.
Call Liberty AutoGlass For All Of Your Windshield Repairs & Replacements
Liberty AutoGlass is your go-to when you need an experienced and trustworthy auto glass shop in the area. Our team consists of licensed auto glass technicians who can provide the best windshield repairs and installations. This way, your windshield can do its job in the event of an accident. Our experts use the highest quality materials to ensure that your safety is a priority. We also work with all major insurance companies and can handle your claim from beginning to end.
The mobile auto glass services that Liberty AutoGlass offers will allow your damaged windshield or broken auto glass to be repaired or replaced quickly and at the convenience of wherever your car is parked. Therefore, we come to you and you can go about your day as you would normally, without any interruptions. Liberty AutoGlass fixes windshields, back glass, door glass, vent glass, quarter glass, and more.