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Can I DIY a Windshield Replacement? 11 Reasons to Leave it to the Professionals

Can I DIY a Windshield Replacement? 11 Reasons to Leave it to the Professionals

When contemplating windshield replacement, the thought of doing it yourself might cross your mind. It seems straightforward enough, and the potential savings are enticing. 

However, the windshield is more than a piece of glass; it’s a critical safety feature of your vehicle, akin to a lifeline in an accident. It’s the shield that stands between you and the elements, and its integrity is paramount to your safety on the road. This is why entrusting this vital task to professionals isn’t merely a recommendation; it’s a necessity.

In this guide, we’ll explore not one or two, but eleven compelling reasons why windshield replacement is a task you should leave to the experts. From the complexities of modern technology to legalities and the sheer importance of quality materials, each point will build a clear and undeniable case. 

DIY’s allure will pale compared to the assurance, safety, and quality guaranteed by professional service. So, let’s dive in and discover why professional windshield replacement isn’t merely a choice but an investment in your safety and peace of mind.

1. Understanding Windshield Replacement

Before we dive into whether you can DIY a windshield replacement, it’s a good idea to understand exactly how windshield replacements work. You might decide that, with its complexity, you don’t even want to attempt to DIY it. Professionals, here you come! But you might want to try. So, here is how the process works.

Windshield replacement is a very meticulous process that begins with removing the old trim. You could compare this process to removing caulking around a window, which is typically done using a razor. This is followed by carefully removing the windshield itself. We recommend using large suction cups to prevent breakage. 

The last thing you want is for the windshield to break. This is dangerous and requires extensive cleanup to ensure no one is injured and that you don’t get any flat tires. 

The next step involves cleaning and preparing the pinch weld, which is the small gap between the windshield and the car body. This area is cleared of any old urethane, dirt, and dust to ensure a proper fit for the new windshield. Urethane is then evenly and quickly applied to the edges of the pinch weld, acting as an adhesive to secure the windshield in place. 

The new windshield is carefully positioned over the car’s opening, ensuring it fits within the pinch weld, and then pushed into place using suction cups and bars. It is held there until the urethane sets, which can vary in time depending on the weather and urethane type. 

Typically, the car is ready to be driven within an hour after the new windshield installation, so it hardly puts you out at all.

2. Safety Risks

A properly installed windshield contributes up to 60% of the cabin’s structural integrity in a rollover accident. 

If installed incorrectly, the windshield might pop out during an accident, increasing the risk of the roof collapsing and potentially leading to severe injuries or death. Professional windshield replacement means installing the windshield to meet and often exceed safety standards to prevent this. 

Windshield replacement requires specialized tools, such as:

  • Suction cups or grips to hold and place the heavy glass.
  • Urethane adhesive guns for a durable bond.
  • Windshield cut-out wire and knives to remove the old adhesive and windshield.

These tools are specific to auto glass installation, and using substitutes may lead to poor installation. Professionals also use high-quality, OEM-equivalent, or better materials that ensure a long-lasting and safe installation.

3. The Complexity of Modern Windshields

Modern windshields often come integrated with technologies tied to the vehicle’s safety and functionality. Those techniques include ADAS, which has features like lane departure warnings, adaptive cruise control, and collision intervention that require precise calibration after it’s been installed

Another technology is HUDs, which project information onto the windshield and must align correctly to be effective and safe. Finally, many windshields are mounted to the windshield and must be accurately reinstalled and calibrated.

Professional installers have the necessary tools and training to handle these complex systems, ensuring your windshield works properly.

Time and Cost of Mistakes

4. Time and Cost of Mistakes

DIY windshield replacement might seem cost-effective, but common mistakes lead to additional expenses, time loss, and vehicle damage: 

  • Additional expenses come from buying new materials after a failed attempt or paying more for professional repair. 
  • Time loss includes the time spent learning, attempting, and possibly redoing the installation and may be significant. 
  • Vehicle damage includes incorrect removal or installation that can damage the vehicle’s frame, paint, or interior, leading to costly repairs.

Considering these factors, the initial savings quickly become more expensive.

5. Warranty and Insurance Issues

Professional installations usually come with a warranty for the glass and labor. In contrast, DIY installations typically void these warranties. Furthermore, insurance companies might not cover damage from a poorly installed windshield, leaving you with the bill for any related repairs.

6. Legal and Compliance Issues

Vehicle safety regulations are strict, and improperly installed windshields might lead to legal liability and inspection failures. If your windshield installation fails and leads to an accident or injury, you could be held liable. Vehicles with improperly installed windshields might fail safety inspections, leading to fines and additional costs.

Professionals ensure your windshield meets all legal and safety standards.

7. Stress and Peace of Mind

Tackling windshield replacement is stressful, especially without the right skills and tools. Professionals offer convenience, peace of mind, and time savings. 

The professionals can come to you and handle the replacement while you take care of other tasks. Peace of mind comes from knowing that trained experts are handling a vital safety feature of your vehicle. Finally, professionals usually complete the job within an hour or two, compared to the much longer time a DIY might take.

8) Quality of Materials

Professional auto glass technicians have access to the highest quality materials, including original equipment manufacturer (OEM) glass and superior adhesives. 

Professionals often choose OEM glass designed to meet or exceed your vehicle maker’s safety and fitment specifications. OEM glass is better for your vehicle.

The adhesive quality is crucial to ensure the windshield stays in place in an accident. Professionals use high-quality urethane to withstand extreme conditions and securely hold the glass.

Using the correct materials ensures your windshield functions as intended, providing optimal visibility and safety.

9. Expertise in Dealing with Complications

Unforeseen issues like rust, corrosion, and complex vehicle designs, often arise during windshield replacement:

Technicians are able to identify and address any rust or corrosion on the vehicle’s frame, which often compromises the integrity of the windshield installation.

Some vehicles have unique designs or features that complicate the replacement process. Professionals have the experience to handle these nuances effectively.

Their ability to deal with these complications is often the difference between a safe installation and a potential hazard.

10. Resale Value

Maintaining the quality and safety of your vehicle impacts its resale value. You’ll want to have professional records proving you maintained the vehicle. Plus, a professionally installed windshield will look seamless and free of defects, maintaining the aesthetic appeal of your vehicle.

11. Environmental Considerations

Professional services are often more environmentally conscious. Professionals understand how to properly dispose of or recycle your old windshield made of laminated glass, which requires special disposal methods. Professionals undergo training to minimize waste, ensuring they use materials like adhesives and sealants efficiently and avoid unnecessary excess.

Choosing a professional ensures a safe, quality repair and supports environmentally responsible practices.

Choose Utah Mobile Auto Glass For All Your Windshield Needs

While the DIY approach to windshield replacement might initially look like a way to save time and money, the reality is starkly different. Your vehicle’s windshield is a crucial component of its structural integrity and your safety on the road. As we’ve explored, there are numerous compelling reasons, from safety risks to legal and insurance implications, why replacing a windshield is a task that demands professional attention.


Utah Mobile Auto Glass stands at the forefront of providing expert, reliable, and high-quality windshield replacement services. Our skilled technicians, access to superior materials, and commitment to safety and customer satisfaction ensure your vehicle is in the best hands. 

Remember, entrusting your windshield replacement to professionals isn’t merely about avoiding the hassle and risks of a DIY job; it’s about ensuring your vehicle remains a safe, comfortable, and reliable mode of transportation. It’s about protecting yourself, your passengers, and your investment in your vehicle. 

So, when the time comes for a windshield replacement, choose wisely. Choose the safety, reliability, and quality only professionals like Utah Mobile Auto Glass can provide. After all, there should be no compromises when it comes to safety on the road.

Call us at 801.997.9161, or contact us through our website to schedule your windshield replacement today!