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Should I Fix a Windshield Rock Chip?

Should I Fix a Windshield Rock Chip

A windshield rock chip might not seem like much more than a minor inconvenience, but even the tiniest cracks require speedy attention.

Rock chips can happen at a moment’s notice. One minute, you’re cruising down the highway listening to your favorite song when suddenly, you hear the jarring sound of a rock hitting your windshield. A rock chip is incredibly inconvenient and annoying, but a tiny chip isn’t really an issue, right? Wrong!

The smallest of rock chips can cause major problems down the line, even if you have to squint to fully see them.

Let’s dive into the key reasons why you should fix that pesky rock chip in your windshield as soon as possible.

Why Is a Windshield Critical?

When shopping for a car, there is a laundry list of features to consider– size, color, transmission type, etc. Along with those cosmetic and functional decisions, safety is a crucial aspect you shouldn’t overlook. People readily think of safety ratings and seat belts, but they tend to forget another major contributor to your vehicle’s safety– the windshield.

The name itself explains one of its safety features; it protects you from the wind! Without this pane of glass, wind, bugs, and debris would smack you in the face the entire time you’re behind the wheel.

Unbeknownst to most people, the windshield provides structural integrity to the vehicle as well. When a vehicle is involved in an accident, the windshield prevents it from completely crumbling. This safety feature also helps to prevent people from flying out of the vehicle.

If your windshield has been compromised by a crack or a rock chip, it can become a serious safety hazard quickly. If you’re involved in an accident, that annoying dot in your line of vision can cause major damage to your car’s defensive windshield. If your car currently sports a crack or chip on the windshield, don’t delay rock chip repair or replacement.

A Rapid Problem

When a rock collides with your windshield and creates a tiny chip, it’s frustrating, but it doesn’t necessarily seem like it could cause long-lasting issues. Consequently, rock chips are easily forgotten or pushed to a later date. The problem with this type of thinking is rock chips can grow without warning. What once was a tiny crack in the corner of your windshield is now a 3-foot-long eyesore obstructing your vision. What could have been an easy fix now warrants a full windshield replacement.

Dirt and debris can enter even the smallest rock chip, with wind and wipers cramming the dirt further into the damaged spot. Next, water is another culprit that can make a chip worse. When water enters the chip, it can freeze and expand, causing further damage to the windshield. Finally, any changes in pressure can also easily cause a crack to form from a small rock chip. 

The alarming reality is these cracks can form while driving, instantly creating a safety hazard that can’t be repaired immediately. 

Rock Chips and Safety Concerns

As we covered previously, rock chips are a significant safety concern. Not only are they potentially problematic for the driver, but other vehicles and pedestrians are also at risk.

Any obstruction in a driver’s field of vision is an inherent risk. That tiny chip or crack can lead to you not seeing a person walking or a car pulling out, creating an awful situation that could have been fixed quickly.

In the state of Utah, windshield cracks can inhibit your vehicle from meeting safety inspection standards if:

  • any crack intersects with another crack
  • there is any damage that cannot be covered by a disc ¾-inch in diameter
  • any damage is within three inches of any other damage
  • the windshield has outright breakage­– shattered glass, sharp edges, etc.

Rock Chip Repair Process

Now that you understand the importance of windshield rock chip repair, let’s walk through the general process:

  1. Examine the chip – The first step is to examine the chip. Taking note of its properties will determine whether or not it can be fixed. 
  2. Clean out the chip – Next, you must thoroughly clean the area. Plenty of debris and dust can collect inside a rock chip, and that gunk can deter the repair process. Additionally, if there’s any remaining glass in the chip, that will also need to be removed.
  3. Remove the air – Once the site is cleaned, it’s necessary to create a vacuum and remove any air from the chip. Air can disturb the resin that is used to fill the chip.
  4. Resin – Once the air has been removed, it’s time to add the resin. The resin fills the crack, eliminating any gaps the crack created. The time this process takes will depend on the type of resin used and the length of the crack.
  5. Curing – Once the resin has filled the crack completely, it’s time to expedite the drying or curing stage of the resin. This is done by exposing the resin to UV light. The UV light promotes the drying of the resin. Any resin that has leaked from the seal will then be cured. Uncured resin at the edges of the repair could compromise its integrity.

Rock chip repair is incredibly fast and affordable. They’re easy for a professional to repair and much more affordable than replacing the entire windshield, which is inevitable once those chips turn into large cracks. The whole repair process takes as little as 30 minutes and will help prevent much more costly repairs or replacement expenses.

Contact Utah Mobile Auto Glass

If your car is currently sporting a windshield rock chip, don’t delay! It’s time to call the experts at Utah Mobile Auto Glass for repair. We offer mobile service for your rock chip repair– free for all customers within 25 miles of our Sandy location! Whether you’re in Lehi or Salt Lake City, Utah, we’re conveniently located to provide you with fast, mobile service. Contact us today to schedule a repair.