You are calmly driving down the road, enjoying the scenery or listening to your favorite song, when it happens. That ear-splitting crack that makes you practically jump through the roof of your vehicle. You quickly scan the windshield, dreading what you will find, and there it is: a chip in your windshield about the size of a pencil eraser. While it may look harmless now, you know if you do not fix it soon it will eventually spread across your windshield in a maniacal grin. To fix it, you usually have two options: you can either find a place that specializes in windshield repair, or you can fix it with a windshield repair kit of your own. Certain companies, such as Tri Glass Inc., may offer professional kits you can purchase for home use, or to even possibly begin your own auto glass repair business.
The glass in your windshield is not the same as the glass in the windows of your home, or even as the glass in the other windows in the vehicle. Windshield glass is composed of two pieces of glass sandwiching layer of laminate. This layer provides the glass with an increased strength by absorbing some of the impact from anything that strikes the windshield. As a result, instead of shattering or puncturing, the glass will usually only crack. The windshield also assists in adding support to the frame of the vehicle, which helps prevent the roof from caving in completely in a rollover accident.
It is not a matter of if the chip will crack, but when. Potholes, rough roads, changes in temperature, and even a quick car wash can cause the inevitable splitting. Having your own repair kit, such as from Tri Glass Inc., can help ensure that you have access to quick repair. But whether you have the repair done professionally or with a kit, the process tends to be relatively similar. The area must first be cleaned, and all glass chips must be removed. An acrylic resin is then used to bond the glass together, but before it can be applied the area must be vacuum sealed of air. If air remains while the resin is applied, it may result in pressure, causing the crack to widen or spread. After the resin is injected, it must be allowed to set either in the sun or under a UV light. Once it has set, the area is cleaned and polished. Depending upon the size of the chip, you may be left with a small dot or absolutely no sign of the damage at all.