A windshield is an essential safety accessory that protects passengers from harm. In case of an accident, it maintains the structural integrity of the car and prevents the passengers from getting crushed and sustaining fatal injuries. It is also responsible for absorbing the impact during a head-on collision. It acts as an extra protective barrier, preventing passengers from being thrown out of the car in case of massive impact.
A windshield is made up of 3 layers – Two glass sheets sandwiched together using a special interlayer of Poly Vinyl Butyral (PVB). It is made in like manner so that passengers do not sustain injuries as in the case of standard glass. In case of an unsustainable impact, the windshield will not shatter into sharp glass shards, but the pieces will stick together to the adhesive interlayer, thereby causing no physical harm.
Hence, as an indispensable component of every car, a windshield should be maintained with utmost care. Regular cleaning and driving with care are essential for prolonging the life of a windshield. However, it goes through regular wear-and-tear and loses its structural stability due to chips and cracks that it may have sustained over time. And despite providing it the best care, once it is past its prime, it is time for you to replace the windshield.
When to Replace a Windshield
Contrary to popular belief, a cracked windshield can never be repaired, and only a chipped windshield qualifies for repair. In fact, once a windshield is cracked, it requires immediate replacement. The reason for this is that cracks weaken the ability of the windscreen to render adequate structural stability to the car. And repairs on such windshields are fruitless. To avoid driving around with a weak windshield that might collapse under the impact, it is necessary to get an immediate replacement.
Moreover, even in case of chips and dents, there are certain conditions – only a maximum of two chips can be repaired and those that do not lie in the driver’s line of vision and have no penetrated to the inner layer of the glass. Failing such conditions, the windshield will need to be replaced.
Identifying whether the windshield is simply chipped or has been cracked, however, can be difficult for a layperson. But several people end up at untrustworthy car repair centres who dupe customers for their money. They may charge you exorbitantly for a poor-quality windshield replacement, or worse, perform a temporary repair and pass it off as a replacement.
That’s why it is always recommended to hand your car to a reliable car repair shop. At AIS Windshield Experts, we only use genuine OEM windshields for cars, guarantee excellent workmanship by our trained technicians and offer a 1-year written warranty on the materials used as well as our workmanship.
The Average Time Required to Replace Windshields
Albeit windshield replacement may seem like a hassle initially, but ding so on time is vital as cracked windshields are a huge safety hazard. And every second that you drive around with a cracked windshield, you are willingly inviting trouble. Windshield replacement is a relatively lengthy process when compared to windshield repair. The average time needed for a windshield replacement can range anywhere from 45 to 60 minutes.
But unlike a quick repair with zero downtime, you need to wait for a couple of hours before you can drive the car following windshield replacement. The reason for this is that the adhesives require some time to cure and bond correctly with the windshield frame, and driving the vehicle immediately after replacement can cause the windshield to get displaced and result in improper fittings.
Precautionary Measures to Protect Your Windshield from Damage
Although inevitable, implementing specific preventive measures and taking extra care can help you avoid instances that are responsible for chips and cracks in a windshield.
Always Park in the Shade
Exposure to extreme heat and sunlight may cause the outer edges of the windshield to expand and eventually crack. To avoid such situations, always park your car in shaded parking lots, garages and shield them with a protective cover.
Keep Distance and Avoid Gravel Roads
Chock full of dirt, debris, and stones, gravel roads can cause the stones to fly onto your windshield, resulting in cracks. So, it is in your best interest to keep a safe distance from the cars in front and take better routes when possible.
Hail and Snowstorms
Hailstorms cause hailstones, whereas snowstorms shower snow pelts – both of which are sharp, rock-like substances capable of creating an intense impact and cracking the windshield. Hence, it is advisable to wait for the storm to pass or drive slowly to avoid heavy impact.
Now that you know all about windshield replacement, head over to AIS Windshield Experts – India’s #1 windshield repair and replacement network – for a safe and sturdy replacement. We offer doorstep facilities and cashless claim transactions for customer convenience. Get an expert consultation today!