Why You Should Not Ignore a Rock Chip in Your Windshield

Prevent road accidents and costly maintenance work by not ignoring a rock chip in the windshield.

A rock chip in the windshield is one of the most annoying things that can happen to car owners. They are usually formed when an outside object, such as gravel and debris, kicked up by other vehicles on the road hits the windshield. In addition, harsh weather conditions can also contribute to the emergence of rock chips, as rain and hail can augment the formation of cracks in the windshield.

It might look like minor damage to the windshield, but failing to take care of it can lead to many complications in the long run. Over time, the small rock chips could turn into stars and significant cracks, impairing road vision, reducing the vehicle’s overall functionality, and requiring costly repair and replacement work.

Investing in windshield chip repair can be worthwhile, ensuring that the windshield performs as expected. This can mitigate the exposure of the internal layers of the windshield to moisture, debris, and dirt, which usually causes significant damage to the windshield. In addition, getting the chips repaired promptly can prevent total windshield replacements, which can be more expensive.

windshield repair

Negative Impacts of Rock Chips in the Windshield

Rock chips might not be a point of concern for many, especially those that might not be readily noticeable by the naked eye. But despite seemingly inconsequential at first glance, even the smallest rock chips can be a headache over time. Constant exposure to the outside elements, vehicle vibration, and temperature fluctuations can impair the windshield’s structural integrity.

One of the prime negative impacts of a neglected rock chip is the possibility of spreading and forming a “spiderweb” as days go by. This can significantly hinder proper vision while driving, disrupting the driver’s line of sight, especially at night. Windshield damage caused by rock chips is a safety hazard as it can hinder drivers from reacting swiftly to various road conditions and situations.

A rock chip also poses a heightened risk of sunlight and headlights refracting unpredictably while on the road. The irregularities in the windshield’s surface can scatter the upcoming light and scatter it and impact the driver’s ability to see the road. This increases the likelihood of accidents, especially when accurate visibility is necessary.

The Role of Weather in Rock Chip Progression

While it might not look like it impacts rock chips, weather conditions have a significant role in the progression of windshield chips. Temperature fluctuations, especially during hot and cold cycles, can cause the glass to expand and contract, leading to cracks and chips. Hailstorms can also be a pain in the head as they can directly leave chips and cracks all over the windshield.

Heavy rain and snow might not directly damage the windshield. However, exposure to these elements can exacerbate the issues caused by rock chips. Rainwater and melted snow can seep into the chipped areas, introducing moisture to the windshield layers. This exerts stress on the compromised glass and can accelerate the progression of the chip.

DIY Temporary Solution

No matter how important it is to take care of windshield rock chips promptly, it is also understandable that not everyone has immediate time or insurance coverage to fix the issue. This is where making DIY (do-it-yourself) solutions can come in handy. This would allow car owners to mitigate further damage until they get the chip repaired.

  • Invest in a Repair Kit: One of the most helpful ways to take care of rock chips is to have a windshield repair kit. This typically includes resin, curing strips, injectors, and other tools essential for the DIY work. They often contain detailed instructions that can guide you through the process.
  • Clean the Area: Before attempting any DIY repairs, it is vital to ensure that the damaged area is clean. Any debris, dirt, or loose glass particles interfering with the repair should be removed.
  • Apply the Resin: This is usually done by placing the resin-filled injector over the chip to apply the resin throughout the damaged area. This can fill the chip and bond with the glass, which prevents the cracks from spreading further.
  • Cure in Sunlight: Most resins used in repair kits are cured using UV, so exposing the vehicle to direct sunlight is essential so that the resin will cure and harden. Windshield repair kits often have a specific recommended time needed for the resin to set.
  • Scrape Excess Resin and Polish: Once the resin is cured, you can use a razor blade or any similar tool to scrape off any excess resin from the windshield’s surface. You can then use a glass cleaner and soft cloth to polish the repaired area to restore the windshield’s appearance.

While DIY repairs can help mitigate further damage, it is crucial to note that it is not a permanent solution. A time will come when professional intervention might be needed, especially if there is already significant damage to the windshield.

Windshield Repair vs. Replacement

Windshield chips and cracks come in different sizes, and it became common thinking that repairs are enough for small rock chips. However, there are instances when a simple rock chip repair, either DIY or by professionals, is insufficient. Some situations when a complete replacement is needed include:

  • The damaged area is on the windshield’s edge,
  • The chip happened inside the windshield,
  • The cracks are too complex for a chip repair,
  • The rock chip happened in the driver’s line of sight.

Investing in either repairs or replacement at the early stages of the damage offers several benefits, emphasizing cost-saving and preservation of the windshield’s structural integrity. This can prevent the progression of damage, which saves the vehicle from more substantial costs associated with extensive maintenance work. Early intervention and repair of minor or significant chips is often more affordable than delaying it for later.

Conclusion

A neglected rock chip, no matter its size, can be a significant issue for several car owners and can increase the risks of accidents on the road. Not ignoring these cracks prevents chip progression and is essential in maintaining the vehicle’s overall performance. It also provides immediate financial savings, enhanced safety, and prolonged windshield longevity.

If you are looking for the best auto shop to conduct a windshield repair in Amarillo, TX, then Brothers Auto and Glass is for you. We have served residents of Amarillo for more than 15 years, delivering quality car repair and preventative maintenance services. Visit https://brothersautoshop.com/contact-us to get an estimate on your car’s needs today.