According to an insurance journal report, 30% of all auto insurance claims in the United States are windshield-related. Because windshield damage is so common, it’s important to know when your windshield needs a repair or replacement. Maintaining and replacing it when needed is important so your safety on the road isn’t compromised.

As a trusted auto glass replacement company in Indianapolis, IN, and across Indiana, we’ve had extensive experience dealing with windshield repairs and replacements. Read on to learn more about five telltale signs your windshields need replacing.

Deteriorating Visibility

Some chips (depending on size and severity) and any crack(s) or scratches that impair your ability to see are urgent reasons to replace your windshield. Indiana, along with most other states, has laws that require a certain amount of visibility. According to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, DOT, federal laws specify only cracks or chips of up to 3/4s of an inch in diameter are allowed unless they are within 3 inches of another crack and are not in a critical vision area — in the middle of the driver’s field of view, for example. Your state might impose further and potentially more stringent requirements.

Breaking this law could get you in trouble, at the very least being pulled over for a class A traffic citation.

Imperfections in your windshield can also distort what you see and often cause blind spots that can impair driver performance. This could prove dangerous, especially during adverse weather conditions or at night, which is when 49% of fatal crashes happen, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).

Windshield Pitting

Pitting is a natural form of wear and tear on a car windshield caused by sand, dust, or debris on the road. These will cause patches in the glass that catch light, often causing intense glare.

These pits or patches scatter reflected light, making it hard to focus on the road ahead visibly. The bright glares cause reduced visibility that can put drivers in danger. A 2015 statistic from NHTSA indicated that sun glare is one of the most common causes of accidents from environmental conditions.

Windshield pitting is often most visible at dusk and dawn when the angle of the light exposes the imperfections on your windshield. If you notice any pitting in your windshield, it’s best to get in touch with a professional and have it replaced.

Winter Damage

Cold winter weather can damage your windshield through ice, snow, salt, and extreme temperature pressures. When a windshield’s integrity is compromised, temperature fluctuations can widen fissures and breaks and, in extreme cases, even destroy the windshield.

DO NOT pour hot water on the windshield in winter if it is iced over. The American Automobile Association discourages this practice because the thermal shock can damage the windshield.

Incorrect Installation and Repair Failure

An improperly installed windshield can also quickly crack and chip due to uneven pressure or vibrations while the vehicle is running.

This would prove costly in the long run due to repairs and replacements, which is why it’s best to hire professionals like Sentry Glass Inc. to repair or replace the windshield correctly the first time.

Sometimes, a repaired windshield simply won’t be the same as it once was. If you start noticing leaks or wind noises after your repaired windshield has cured, it’s better to have it replaced than risk compromising its integrity further, putting you in danger.

How Much Does a Windshield Replacement Cost?

When determining the cost of windshield replacement, many factors must be considered, including your vehicle’s year, make, and model, any sensors (such as rain sensors, a lane departure warning system, and forward collision alert, among others), your location, the type of damage, the type of glass needed, and your preferred brand.

Compared to the cost of an accident or any fines, the cost of replacing a windshield with damage causing poor visibility is money well spent.

Sentry Glass Inc.: A Superior Provider of Auto and Semi-Truck Glass Repairs and Replacements Serving Indiana

Sentry Glass Inc. is a leading auto and semi-truck glass repair and replacement company in Carmel, Indiana. Our woman-owned company has been offering windshield and window glass repairs and replacements for cars and semi-trucks across Indiana since 1991. Contact us for a free quote or to learn more about our services at 317-577-8147 or today!