Windshield Worries: How Big of a Crack Can Windshield Repair Fix?


Driving at high speeds on the highway, it’s not uncommon for a piece of road debris to fly up and damage a windshield. A few states, like Florida, Kentucky, and South Carolina, even offer free windshield repair for this reason.

For small chips and cracks, the windshield may not need to be replaced. It may be possible to repair this kind of damage, depending on its size, depth, and location. It’s wise to have it repaired soon, as any kind of damage weakens the structural integrity of the windshield and negatively impacts visibility.

To find out what kind of damage can be repaired, check out the information below.

The Size

A crack under three inches in length can typically be a good candidate for windshield repair. Sometimes, however, the depth of a crack can expose the inner lamination of the windshield, comprising its structural integrity and necessitating full windshield replacement.

Chips can also be repaired if they are smaller than the size of a quarter.

The Depth

If the crack or chips is localized to the hard outer layer of the windshield, it can be repaired. If it penetrates the inner laminate layer, however, it needs to be replaced. Of course, if the damage penetrates completely through the windshield, it needs to be replaced.

The Location

The area of any chips or cracks determines whether car windshield repair or replacement is necessary. Cracks or chips along the edges of a windshield often compromise the structural integrity of the windshield and require full windshield replacement.

Additionally, chips or cracks on the driver’s side of the windshield require full replacement because they impact driver visibility. Although good windshield repair is hardly visible, it often leaves some discoloration or unevenness behind.

Types Of Cracks

Windshield repair experts have specific names for the different types of cracks they often see. Some require windshield replacement, while others can be repaired.

A star crack looks like a point of impact surrounded by radial cracks. Bullseye or partial bullseye cracks are caused by circular objects. A windshield crack chip or pit involves glass under the size of a quarter missing from the windshield.

All of those types of cracks can be repaired. The types of cracks that cannot be repaired include:

  • A combination break
  • An edge crack
  • A long crack
  • A stress crack

You can research the different types of cracks and compare them to your situation.

Common Causes Of Damage

Knowing the common causes of windshield damage can help you avoid it in the future. These causes include:

  • Storm debris
  • Car accidents
  • Cheap glass
  • Poor installation
  • Air pressure changes
  • Extreme temperature
  • Rocks and road debris

Try to avoid driving on busy roads, but when you must, keep a large amount of distance between your vehicle and large trucks.

Quotes For Windshield Repair

Windshield repair is a common part of regular car maintenance. If you aren’t lucky enough to live in a state that guarantees free windshield replacement, consider having small chips and cracks repaired.

If you found this guide useful, take a moment to browse our other recent posts.


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