Damage to your windshield can not only prevent you from seeing well to drive but it can also decrease the roof’s integrity. That can mean the roof could collapse if you are in a rollover accident.
Windshield replacement can cost between $100 and $401 without insurance. It could cost $1,500 or more on a collector car. The final price depends on your car’s make and model among other factors.
The good news is there many instances where windshield damage can be fixed without needing to replace the entire windshield.
Repair or Replace?
Damage on your windshield should be taken care of as soon as possible. Even tiny cracks or chipped glass can get bigger or “spider web” as time rolls on. Larger cracks can put you or your passengers in danger because windshields help your car keep its structure in an accident.
The traditional rule is that any damage smaller than a dollar bill can be repaired and won’t require replacement.
What Goes Into a Final Price?
Many factors contribute to the final price of a windshield repair or replacement. That includes:
- The year, make, model of your car
- Rain sensors in the windshield
- Windshield wiper quality
- Extend of damage
- The glass used in the windshield
- Original manufacturer or aftermarket glass
It costs more to replace the front glass in a car than the back glass. That is because the back glass usually doesn’t require wiper assembly as the front does. Replacing the back glass can cost between $100 and $300.
Special molding on cars can add another 20 percent to the cost of repair.
Choosing Between Manufacturer and Aftermarket Glass
There are advantages and disadvantages between the two options. Original equipment manufacturer (OEM) glass will cost more than aftermarket glass. Normally, aftermarket windshields are $100 less than those from a manufacturer.
However, the disadvantage is aftermarket products may use lower-quality products. That could mean a bargain windshield could create distortions in your windshield. That can affect your view and make it harder to drive.
Another factor is aftermarket windshields can pop out during a collision while OEM glass will have a perfect fit to the frame.
Repairing a Cracked Windshield
It costs considerably less to fix a cracked windshield than it is to replace one. The price is typically between $50 to $150 to fix a crack. The price will be less when the damage is smaller, like a tiny chip.
Pricing examples include around $135 to fix a chip while it will cost around $200 to fix three chips in a windshield.
Most glass places will repair or replace a windshield even if you don’t have insurance but you will need to pay it all out of pocket at the time of repair. Be sure you are aware of all the costs that you will be responsible for before agreeing to the repair.
It is cheap to replace or repair a windshield without insurance?
It can be cheap, depending on the car. It can cost between $50 and $150 to repair a cracked windshield. Replacing can be up to $400 but could be less depending on the type of glass used and the make and model of your car.
Should I pay for a windshield repair out of pocket?
It depends on your deductible. Pay out of pocket if your deductible is more than the cost of the windshield repair. Repairs or replacements that are higher than your deductible should be done through your insurance.
Be sure to ask if your claim will affect your insurance rates long-term also. Sometimes, it’s cheaper overall to pay the cost yourself if the claim will raise your insurance rates.
How hard is it to replace a windshield?
It’s not hard to replace a windshield and some people with some mechanical savvy can do it.
Windshields have special adhesives that formed a chemical bond. This minimizes shattering but the toughest part about replacement is lifting it and getting it on the car. You may need a friend to help.
How long does it take to replace a windshield?
A professional can replace a windshield in an hour or less if they have all the materials. Some repairs can be done in 30 minutes or less.
Can I drive my car right after my windshield is replaced?
Although windshield replacement doesn’t take long, experts recommend that you don’t drive the car for at least one hour after getting your new windshield. You can drive right after repairs are made.
What is the tape on the windshield replacement?
Specialized tape is used by some auto glass technicians to secure the new windshield. Any tape should remain on the car for at least 24 hours or longer. Remove the tape carefully. Make sure it’s completely removed.
Can I use my wipers after my windshield is replaced?
You can use your wipers after a crack is filled. However, when it comes to windshield replacement, most auto glass technicians stress you shouldn’t use your wipers for at least an hour or more because the wipers going back and forth can affect the glass
Can I wash my car before getting my windshield replaced?
Yes. Water, rain, and hand-washing your car are fine before a windshield replacement. You should be cautious about air pressure when washing your car for the first time after getting your windshield replaced.
Roll down your windows an inch or two after the wash and leave them down for 24 hours to prevent air pressure from causing a leak in the adhesive.
Will rain affect a new windshield?
No, the rain will not affect newly replaced windshields. Moisture can help the adhesive cure more quickly.
How long does it take for windshield urethane to dry?
Glass urethane takes at least 24 hours to dry and longer to achieve a full cure. Individual car manufacturers may have special stipulations for windshield replacement including specific windshields to use and different cure times.
Can I replace a windshield in cold weather?
Yes, if you need to replace your windshield you should get it done even if it’s cold. A small crack can expand and eventually make your windshield shatter so it’s best to take care of it sooner than later.
How cold does it have to be to crack a windshield?
Temperatures that dip to 32 degrees Fahrenheit will make a cracked windshield 60 percent more likely to spread, according to a Motor Industry Research Association study.
Temperatures that drop to 14 degrees Fahrenheit can increase the change of damage to 80 percent.
How does heat affect windshield cracks?
It’s not that warmer weather causes windshield cracks to spread more than cooler weather does. It’s that warmer weather affects how the cracks spread.
Hotter weather can cause chips to spread into verticle cracks.
Will using the defrost crack my windshield?
Using the defroster on your windshield could cause it to crack if you heat up the glass too quickly. A fast change in temperature can result in cracks or breakage.
Experts say to warm your car and your windshield up slowly. Those with windshield imperfections stand more risk of a rapidly warming defroster causing a crack.
Experts also warn never to pour warm or hot water on your windshield to thaw it. That will crack it.