The sun is up and the wind is perfect for a road trip with your friends. Without hesitation, you decide to hit the road for a few hours. A few highways and conversations have passed and it seems like everything is going fine until suddenly a small branch hits your windshield and decides to spoil all the fun because now you have to replace the windshield.
This might seem to be a simple blemish on what was a smooth windshield before. But just like any broken glass, the damage will spread like wildfire. Motorists would take this for granted for a few weeks or months due to the unexpected spending of a few bucks and other factors but apparently, any automotive expert would undoubtedly say that this will pose a huge hazard to other drivers and the people inside the car as well. Not only does it disrupt the driver’s vision but it will also take a toll on the car itself.
Now the question is, do I repair the windshield or will I replace it? Although repairing alone may require you only cheaper costs, it is very much a wise decision to replace it rather and a recommended action to do it as soon as possible.
This might have you scratching your heads since you have to bring a few cash out unexpectedly, but actually, the windshield replacement cost in general need not to empty your bank accounts or even your pockets since there are ways on making sure that you get the job done well without spending too much.
To guide you further on the necessary steps and processes in fixing the current concern you have, here are some tips and information about windshield replacement and its relating costs for you to prepare yourself.
The Average Cost of Windshield Replacement
The very first thing automotive professionals analyze when deciding to repair or replace a windshield is the severity of the damages. Guidelines and standards may vary across different shops, however they all agree that any chip or any damage larger than a quarter is already a possible candidate for replacement.
Know that smaller damages when exposed to extreme heat or cold can cause enough stress on the area of concern resulting for the simple cracks and damages to grow bigger and deeper. Accordingly, it is imperative that you take your broken windshields to a nearby shop and have it checked by a competent mechanic.
The overall price and budget to replace windshields vary significantly depending on the type of vehicle. Aside from the windshield itself, you also have to take into consideration the windshield molding kits and the labor done by the mechanic.
In totality, the average cost would amount to $170 to $300 or even more on a normal basis. However, there is a significant difference when it comes to pricing between the dealers and automotive glass shops which you must be well aware of especially when you are on a tight budget.
Dealers vs Automotive Glass Shops
The difference being said in the total amounts is brought about by the type of windshield these specific people use in finishing the job. Opting for dealers will require you to spend more since they always tend to largely use Original Equipment Manufacturer products or OEM materials. These OEM windshields are exactly the same as the ones that originally came with the car on your initial purchase. Usually, it may require you to pay up tp $1,500 for the overall expenses especially if your car is a high-end type.
On the other hand, automotive glass shops basically do the fixing and replacing works using non OEM materials since they are very well intact with non OEM suppliers in the industry. Generally, it would on cost you an average price of $214 for the entire task. While this quite results to lower windshield replacement prices, still it will assure you of the same quality, safety, and clarity as with the more expensive OEM windshields.
With these conditions at hand, note as well that most automotive experts of today emphasize that consumers should and must opt for only OEM recommended sealers and adhesives when replacing windshields. In addition, Sub par materials and improperly installed windshields will result to leaking in the area as well as the huge possibility of being dislodged during an accident placing the passengers in huge and more jeopardy.
Types of Automotive Windshields
Front windshields are usually laminated. In here, two pieces of glass are fused together with a vinyl liner between them which serves its purpose of keeping the windshield in one piece in case of accidents or breakage. Contrary to the general knowledge, windshields not only keep you from bumping into bugs when driving but it also provides structural support to the roof in the event that the car may roll over. Moreover, windshields serve as a structure to bounce off when the driver or passenger side airbags inflate in the event of a collision.
Another type of windshield is made up of tempered glass. In this type of windshield, the small pieces of glass shatter into very more fine pieces whenever there is breakage. It is also widely used for side windows so that passengers can break through and escape when the need arises such as when the car is submerged in water or in emergency situations.
However, most automobile manufacturers will opt to use laminated window for the side windows because this keeps passengers from being ejected from the car in case of a collision or any accident. In addition, this also makes it harder for thieves to break through the side windows.
Windshield replacement and Insurance
If the car insurance plan is limited only to liability coverage, then the insurance company will definitely not cover for the windshield replacement. Because of this, the motorist would most likely have to shell out money from his own pocket to pay the entire windshield replacement cost.
On the other hand, if the insurance company includes comprehensive coverage, then they can cater to the windshield replacement charges, but only if the amount is below the cost of the deductible. High deductibles will most likely lower premiums, with this, it is expected that low cost repairs or replacements would still be paid in full by the driver. However, if the replacement cost is well above the deductible then the driver can file a claim and thus save a few dollars on the replacement.
Instructions after Windshield Replacement
After having your windshield replaced, it is important that you listen to the installer’s instructions to leave the side windows cracked for the required drying time which may cause several issues. The most common problem that may arise is when vehicle doors have the windows rolled up, and when a door is constantly opened and then closed, this will stress the window with forceful pressure by the moving air up against the newly installed windshield urethane seal. The result is a small hole which causes a bothersome wind noise when driving.
Windshields are definitely an integral part of any vehicle. Bearing with a chipped or cracked windshield and shrugging aside the impending problem will result to unsafe driving as well as affect the aesthetics of the vehicle. With this, it is advisable that you have your chipped or cracked windshields be checked as soon as possible by a competent mechanic and be notified immediately for the windshield replacement prices so that you can prepare efficiently.