It’s never a good idea to ignore a chipped windscreen.
A small chip or crack on your car’s windscreen might not look serious at first, but the reality is that there are many factors that can cause the damage to spread. A small problem can quickly escalate into a major one which necessitates a more expensive repair job (or even a total windscreen replacement) and importantly, which creates a significant safety issue on the road.
Here’s a look at some of the factors that play a role in how a chip or crack ‘behaves’.
Temperature fluctuations are the most common reasons for a chip or crack to spread as they cause the glass to expand and contract. Parking in the sun, using your car’s air conditioner or heater or even the variations between day and night can weaken the glass and the longer you delay the repair, the greater the likelihood that temperature changes will result in the damage spreading.
Bumpy terrain can also cause a crack or chip to spread. If you drive on gravel roads, roads that are under construction or even just go over a speed hump or into a pothole when your windscreen is damaged, the vibrations can cause the problem to worsen.
Pressure on the windscreen can also cause problems. If you can feel the texture of the initial crack or chip (either on the inside or the outside of the glass) when you run your finger over it, you should be extra cautious. If you continue to drive for any length of time, the airflow running over the damaged area will exert pressure on it and may cause the crack to increase.
Moisture can also cause a crack or chip to worsen. Windscreens are made by sandwiching an inner layer of polyvinyl butyral between two layers of laminated glass and if the damage penetrates past the outer layer and the inner layer gets wet, it can become contaminated and impossible to repair.
If you have a superficial crack or chip, you can take a chance and leave it untreated (provided that it doesn’t impede the driver’s visibility) but it is certainly not recommended. Many drivers ignore cracks and chips, but the reality is that the longer you leave it, the more it may cost in the long run.
Most chips and small cracks can be repaired quickly, effectively and economically – and if the job is done by a professional, your windscreen repair can look as good as new. However, if the damage is left to spread, it may require a full windscreen replacement which is a much bigger and more expensive job.
Your vehicle’s windscreen isn’t just there to look good. They play a really important role in maintaining the structural integrity of the vehicle and keeping you and your passengers safe in the event of a roll-over. They’re also important for the correct deployment of the front airbags – so it is absolutely not worth taking a chance with your autoglass.
If you have any sign of damage to your windscreen – even if it looks like a small, superficial crack or chip – you should get a professional opinion from a reputable windscreen repair company as soon as possible. Your best choice is to have it fixed right away.
So, if you’ve experienced some annoying damage to your windscreen, get in touch with the experts in windscreen repairs in Perth for professional advice and service. Autoglass has over 15 years’ experience in repairs and windscreen replacements and with headquarters in Perth and serving both the Metro and rural areas from their mobile units, they can provide fast, efficient service 24/7. Call Jason on 0400 200 086 for a free quote or contact them online at www.autoscreens.com.au.