How do you know when your vehicle is ready for a mobile windshield replacement? Today, we’re filling you in on everything you need to know.
Your car is jam-packed with countless safety features, from airbags and lane assist to heads-up display and blindspot monitor. But one of the most important safety features your car possesses that doesn’t get the credit it deserves is your windshield.
The windshield protects you and your passengers from rain, dirt, flying debris, and bugs while driving on the road. But, like many other components of your vehicle, it will eventually need to be replaced as it wears over time.
The lifespan of your windshield varies greatly and depends on many factors such as how it was made or installed, if it has undergone previous repairs or not, how many repairs, if the owner is good about keeping debris off the wipers before using, and more. In any case, windshield replacement is inevitable for most cars, so understanding when it is time is crucial.
Continue reading to learn more about when it’s time for a mobile windshield replacement and more.
8 Signs It’s Time for a Mobile Windshield Replacement
There’s never a convenient time to need to replace your auto glass. We know that replacing a car windshield isn’t ever ideal, but there comes a time that it is necessary. Here are eight signs replacing a car windshield is a good idea:
1. Chips and Cracks
Cracks and chips are usually caused by flying debris hitting your windshield at high speeds, such as an air-bound rock. The force from such hits can either crack or chip your windshield, despite just how tiny these objects can be, depending on their severity.
In some cases, cracks and chips won’t pose any significant threat to your safety while you drive. Many types of chips and cracks can be repaired with a simple procedure done by an experienced windshield technician. However, there are some chips and cracks that cannot be repaired and will require you to get your windshield replaced.
Once the chip or crack has exceeded a certain size or stretches farther than a certain length, repairs cannot be done, and a replacement is necessary. And it’s time to look for a mobile windshield replacement service.
2. Bull’s Eye Cracks
When a chip in your windshield reaches an inch or more, your windshield glass should be replaced right away. A crack that starts out small but keeps growing into an eventual circle shape that has concentric lines radiating out from the center should be replaced immediately. This is because, as time passes, these can become larger and larger, putting your safety in jeopardy.
Cracks that look like this are called a bull’s eye or a target crack because of their visual similarities. If left alone, the bull’s eye crack can weaken your windshield’s integrity, leaving it to eventually shatter.
3. Multiple Fracture Cracks and Chips
When cracks and chips on your windshield suddenly split into multiple fractures within a short period of time, it’s time to get a mobile replacement. These signs tell you that your windshield could shatter sooner than later.
4. Required Inspection Time
If the time has come for a vehicle inspection, your car will not pass if there are significant chips or cracks in your windshield. Rather than wasting your time going to the inspection test and risking failure, it’s best to get your windshield replaced before you even go.
Not only is this sure to keep you, your passengers, and other drivers on the road safer, but you also won’t have to worry about risking getting pulled over and getting a ticket as a result of having an expired registration sticker since you will only be able to get renewed once you’ve passed your inspection.
5. You’re Too Busy to Take Your Car to the Shop
Between work, family life, hobbies, and whatever else is thrown at us, there’s no secret that life gets really busy. So busy that there’s little time to even run to the grocery store or watch your favorite show, let alone take your car to get fixed while you sit around waiting.
Even if you’re so busy that you don’t have the time to take your car to get the windshield repaired or replaced, you don’t have to drive around in a damaged car (which is super unsafe!). The best windshield companies offer mobile service, allowing you to stay home or at the office while a professional handles the job for you.
6. Poor Visibility
A cracked, chipped, or otherwise damaged windshield can significantly affect your visibility, making you have to focus more intently on the road. This can be incredibly dangerous, whether you are driving at high speeds or slowly. This is also especially dangerous during inclement weather or when lighting conditions are too bright or too dark.
7. Cloudy or Swirling Glass
Another warning sign that it’s time for a mobile windshield replacement is a swirling appearance in the glass. This can come from two things: contamination or aging. If your windshield is already chipped, bits of dirt can get stuck under it and in its crevices over time, intensifying the swirling marks with each white of your windshield wipers.
In some cases, the windshield could turn green or yellow due to the various types of chemicals splashed on it. While these clouds do not necessarily mean a more severe issue, replacing your windshield now will help prevent it from turning opaque down the line.
One way you’ll know the time has come for a windshield replacement is when your current windshield starts to discolor. Yellow or white spots due to sun exposure can appear on your otherwise clear windshield. This doesn’t happen overnight but over many years and is caused by radiation from the sun (not just heat).
Types of Auto Glass Cracks
Not all chips were created equally. Here are some of the different types of auto glass cracks you could be working with:
- Edge Cracks — An edge crack begins at the edge of the windshield and usually happens due to excessive pressure on the edges of the windshield. When windshields are not installed properly, it is likely to experience this type of damage.
- Stress Crack — This is the type of crack that you’ll see when temperature changes lead to windshield damage.
- Crack Chip — If the crack can “fit” in the area of a quarter, it’s called a crack chip.
- Long Crack — If the crack is longer than six inches, about the length of a dollar bill, the crack in your auto glass is called a long crack.
- Star Break — As the name implies, this crack looks like a star. There is a single chip, and from the midpoint of breakage, it has lines extending in all directions.
- Floater Crack — A floater crack appears in the middle of your windshield, not close to the edges.
- Scratches — Auto glass can become scratched by various things, including old wiper blades that ought to be replaced. As the rubber on the wipers wears down, the metal bits that hold the rubber into place could start scraping against the windshield. With continued use, scratches can form and deepen.
Scratches are usually shallow. Use your finger over the damaged area to determine the depth of the scratch. Most scratches will only affect the outer layers of the windshield.
While scratches typically will not affect the structural integrity of your windshield, they can certainly take away from the look and appeal of your car. Scratches can also reflect light from oncoming cars’ headlights, streetlights, and the sun, impacting your vision and increasing the risk of driving.
Scratch repairs are easy to do and can be done only if the damage isn’t too deep. It involves buffing the damaged glass until it is no longer visible.
Different Types of Auto Glass Chips
Like cracks, not all chips are the same. Here are some of the different types of auto glass chips your vehicle’s windshield could incur:
- Chip or Pit — A chip or pit is when a small piece of glass goes missing from the windshield.
- Bull’s Eye — As mentioned above, these look like bull’s eye targets. If the chip is larger and has a dark-colored circular shape and impact hole, you have yourself a bull’s eye chip.
- Half Moon — A half-moon chip, also called a partial bull’s eye, resembles a full bull’s eye, only the damage occurs on one side.
- Combination Break — A severe type of windshield chip is the combination break, where a chip has several cracks radiating from it.
Reasons Windshields Get Damaged
Damage can occur in the inner or outer layer of your windshield (and any other glass on your car, for that matter) for a variety of reasons. Here are some of the more common causes:
- Flying Debris — Of course, flying objects are the most common reason why chips and cracks develop in a windshield. As mentioned above, rocks and other items (remember, they don’t have to be much bigger than a pebble) can get kicked up at high speeds or in the wind and cause severe damage to the windshield.
- Pressure Changes — Pressure changes in the weather can cause cracks in your windshield. Wind pressure is a common cause of cracks in auto glass.
- Temperature Changes — Anyone who has tried washing their car with cold water on a warm summer day can, unfortunately, tell you about the most common type of “stress crack,” a sudden change in temperature. You’ll deal with the same issue if you try using hot (or even warm) water to melt an icy or snowy windshield.
- Auto Glass Defects — Another reason cracks can develop is if your windshield has manufacturing defects. For example, “residual stress” is the term used in the industry to describe weakness along the edges of the windshield, which can result in irreparable damage down the road.
How Does a Mobile Windshield Replacement Work?
Replacing a car windshield should always be done by a professional. After choosing the right mobile windshield replacement service company, your technician will come to you, whether that be your home, workplace, school, or another convenient location for you. They should walk you through the entire replacement process, including removing, replacing, and installing the new windshield.
Then, the qualified technician will proceed to completely remove the damaged windshield. The tech will use primers and adhesives to fully install the new windshield. Doing the steps incorrectly or skipping the use of primer could result in a flawed installment and a weaker windshield.
Your technician should always wear gloves to ensure the glass stays clean and the adhesive works correctly (grease from their hands could prevent the adhesive from working). Then, your windows should be cleaned, and any glass pieces that may have fallen on the inside of your car should be vacuumed up.
Lastly, your knowledgeable tech will fill you in on the sitting time of the car. Once the job is completed, it is smart to check for signs that it was completed properly. The molding should be straight, and there should not be any adhesive visible from the inside of the car. It should be clean; any sign of dirt, debris, or adhesive could imply sloppy workmanship.
Count on Utah Mobile Auto Glass For Your Mobile Windshield Replacement Service
If you are looking for a trusted and qualified mobile windshield replacement company, Utah Mobile Auto Glass is here for you.
Our team of experienced glass technicians will ensure you receive the highest quality work in the industry with a kind smile. Our exceptional service is what keeps our customers coming back time after time.
The team at Utah Mobile Auto Glass is incredibly flexible, friendly, and easy to work with. Whether you require a simple rock chip repair or every window on your vehicle replaced, we are here for you!
Do you have car insurance? We will happily work with your insurer to see if you qualify for free or low-cost repairs and replacements. We offer free and convenient mobile service on your auto glass repair and replacement for all customers within a 25-mile radius of our Sandy location. So, if you’re in Lehi, Bountiful, Salt Lake City, or a nearby area, our team is here to help!
Contact us to learn more today!