Left alone, the tiny chips small rocks leave on windshields have a way of growing. Learn how a quick windshield repair can prevent bigger expenses down the road.
How do you recognize a stone chip?
If you noticed debris bouncing off your windshield as you were driving, It’s a good idea to check for a chip in the windshield as soon as your vehicle is safely stopped.
You are looking for a small nick or crack that is five millimetres or less – about the size of a quarter – with radiating cracks no longer than 50 millimetres. There are four basic shapes to identify these rather small cracks. They are:
- The star break with a centre and radiating small cracks—like a star.
- Bulls-eye break—a circular rock chip with a centre.
- Half-moon break—a bulls-eye break with an incomplete circle.
- Combination break—circular shape of the bulls-eye and radiating cracks of the star crack.
Why is a stone chip in your windshield a problem?
It may look like no big deal, but a stone chip is bad news. It’s a way for moisture, air and dirt to get between the layers of your windshield. And, if it’s in your line of vision from the driver’s seat, that stone chip is actually distorting your view of the road.
The longer you leave a stone chip open to the elements, the more it weakens your windshield, especially in extreme temperature changes. That stone chip will grow into a crack that can’t be easily repaired. In fact, 90 per cent of stone chips near windshield edges turn into cracks.
Make a windshield repair for a stone chip sooner, not later
Catching a stone chip soon after it happens has several advantages beyond not having to look at an ugly, long crack creeping across your windshield. Head to your auto repair garage within one week for an easier, cheaper windshield repair. Repairs for fresh stone chips are faster; your vehicle may be ready in 15 to 30 minutes.
You may pay less or nothing because your insurance company prefers to pay for stone chip repair over more expensive options. This smaller repair job may not even affect your deductible. If you let the same stone chip turn into line crack, you’re facing windshield replacement over an easier windshield repair. And your insurance company may not pay the full cost of the replacement.
Do I need an auto repair shop to fix a stone chip?
Some kits are available for DIY stone chip repair at home. However, if you want to make sure you have a stone chip and not a long crack, it is best to take your vehicle to your auto repair garage. They can identify the particular stone chip for the right windshield repair. Plus a technician knowledgeable about auto glass is prepared with the resins, tools and drying equipment to perform a reliable repair.