4 Reasons You Should Replace A Windshield
The windshield of a vehicle is an important safety system that people rarely think about until it is damaged. If you're feeling unsure about when it's time to call a windshield replacement company, here are four instances where that is a good choice.
Cracks in Your Field of View
Any damage that's in your direct field of view as the driver has to be dealt with. You can roughly estimate the field of view by putting your hands to the left and right of the steering wheel. The portion of the windshield that lines up with that zone represents the driver's field of view. Pits, cracks, and spidering in this zone are always problematic, and windshield replacement work is preferred to repairs because of the risk of distortion from repair products.
Damage at the edges of the windshield is always especially worrisome. This is because these zones provide the most support to the windshield against air pressure. If the edges are compromised, there is a risk the windshield could separate from its seal and go flying. Whether the windshield flies into your car or away from it, someone could get hurt.
Issues With the Lamination
Modern windshields are designed with many layers of lamination. This ensures that the windshield will hold up better during an impact. If you've ever seen images of car accidents, you've likely noticed that the windshields can look massively damaged without many of the pieces going missing. This is because the laminate holds the shattered pieces in place when catastrophic damage occurs.
Any visible damage to the laminate is bad news. If the laminate fails, there is a risk that the whole windshield could collapse and pose a danger to the vehicle's occupants.
The majority of windshields sold today are designed to hold up well to discoloring due to exposure. Discoloration can occur when the windshield is exposed to massive amounts of UV rays, especially if the car is left in a parking lot all day in a very sunny region. Heavy smoking can also produce discoloration.
Your view through the windshield should be as clear as possible. Unfortunately, many cleaning products aren't sufficient to fix the job. Generally, for something to be good enough to clean up UV discoloration, it has to be abrasive enough to strip off the outer layer of the windshield. Even in the best scenario, this will leave a surface that's more vulnerable to UV exposure.