Windshield Chip Causes and Repairs
At some point in your driving career, you’ve likely been driving along the roadway, possibly conversing with a passenger or listening to the radio, when all of a sudden you hear a slight ding on your windshield. At this moment, you look up and see a small chip somewhere on your windshield. Most of us have been there before and if you haven’t, consider yourself lucky and know that the day for a windshield chip is probably coming your way soon.
Windshield chips on your vehicle are most often caused by flying debris, usually in the form of a small rock. At certain times of the years, the roadways can be littered with small rocks and pebbles and when a tire on a high-speed vehicle hits that rock, it can project the small rock backward into the air. If another car is tailgating along behind them, the windshield can be hit and a high-speed rock can do enough damage to cause a small chip. Dump trucks and other road work vehicles also can have rocks and other debris fly out of their back end at a high speed that can cause damage to your windshield.
As soon as you have this happen to you, it is important to have the chip repaired as soon as possible to prevent further cracking beyond the original trip. The process for repairing windshield chips is really quite simple and often takes a windshield technician only 30 minutes or so to repair. To begin the repair, the tech will take a look at the chip itself to make sure it can be repaired. If left too long to the point where it turns into a long crack or if a bunch of debris was to get in the chip, it may be unrepairable and the windshield would then require replacement.
After the tech determines that it is repairable, they will clean out the chip of any debris or moisture that could be contained in the chip. If debris or water are left in the chip upon repair, the repair will not turn and clear and will rather by cloudy. Then, after cleaning the chip out, the tech seals the chip with a mixed resin material. After adding the resin, the tech hardens the resin with a UV light which allows the spot to dry clearly and blend in with the glass on your windshield. After drying, the tech removes the excess resin to ensure a smooth, flat surface remains on the windshield.
If you find yourself in a situation with a chipped windshield, it is important to have it repaired as soon as possible to prevent further cracking which will require an expensive replacement. If it will be a few days or weeks until you can get it repaired, cover the chip with clear packing tape to keep debris out, don’t wash the vehicles and don’t press on the glass from the inside prior to it being repaired.