Whenever you drive, you are at risk of getting a chipped windscreen. It is an unfortunate, annoying part of life and unavoidable no matter how safely your drive. Kicked up debris or stones from the road, as well as from trucks and unmade roads can create a chip in an instant. Even the smallest stone can create a sizeable chip if there’s enough force behind it. Thankfully, depending on the shape, depth, and size of the chip, most chips damage can be repaired. But a lot of people still wonder how windscreen chips are repaired and whether chip repairs are a good, long-term solution. Today we’re going to ask the question, does chip repair work?
How a Windscreen Chip is Repaired
So, does windscreen chip repair work? Below we are going to break down the exact process and techniques behind making your windscreen safe AND looking great again.
1: Examining the Chip
The first step is to examine the chip to see if it can be repaired and the appropriate method to use when fixing the chip. This depends on the type and size of the chip, which also determines if repair is possible. There are several types on windscreen chip, including:
These are windscreen chips defines by their circular shape with a dark outline and a central cone in the outer layer of the glass. This damage tends to resemble a bullseye on a dartboard, hence the name. These chips are often one of the easiest to repair, provided the chip isn’t too large. They should be less than an inch in diameter and not within the driver’s field of vision.
The surface chip is the most common type of windscreen damage. It usually occurs when small, hard objects, like stones, knock out smaller chunks of glass. As long as this type of chip doesn’t pierce the plastic divider between the inner and outer layers of safety glass, it is often simple to repair.
A star chip is defined by several cracks spreading out from the point of impact, creating the look of a star. Generally, as long as the damage as smaller than 2.5cm in diameter.
Generally, cracks cannot be repaired, and your windscreen will need to be replaced. This is why we say it is important to get a chip repaired before it turns into a crack. Even the smallest jolt can cause the weakened glass around the chip to expand the damage. Cracks can also render your car unroadworthy so it is important you have your windscreen replaced as soon as possible if you have a crack.
2: The Windscreen Chip Repair Process
Once we are sure the chip meets the correct criteria for repair, our technicians can begin the repair process. This means our technicians are happy that the chip is within safe size standards for a high-quality repair and the windscreen won’t require replacing.
3: Cleaning the Chip
Cleaning the impact point is an important part of the repair process to ensure a successful repair. Any loose glass splinters or fragments are removed, along with dust and debris that could impede the resin repair process. At this point our skilled technicians will also identify way to enhance resin flow for the best possible repair of your windscreen.
4: Vacuum Seal
After cleaning and preparing the repair site, the tool for repairing your windscreen is applied. A vacuum seal is used to secure the tool to the windscreen before it is filled with the resin used for the repair. Our technicians take extreme care to prevent any air remaining in the chip as this can affect the resin curing.
5: Filling the Chip with Resin
Resin is then pushed into the chip once all the air has been removed by the vacuum seal. The time taken at this point depends on the size and depth of this chip and the type of resin used. The pressure from the tool ensures that resin flows through and fills the entirety of the chip.
6: Curing the Resin
Resin cures by exposure to ultraviolet light. This causes the resin to harden inside the chip, forming a substance as strong and safe as the rest of your autoglass. At this stage of the repair, our technicians take great care to ensure the resin is totally cured, including around the edges.
7: Levelling Off Excess Resin
A smooth finish is important not only for the aesthetic look of your windscreen, but also for safety. If there is any excess resin, our technicians level off any excess resin for the perfect finish. This leaves your windscreen as strong and safe as it was before the chip, allowing you to drive safely once again.
Why Windscreen Chip Repair Doesn’t Always Work
There are, of course, times when chip repair doesn’t work. Poor repair work can result in you needing to seek another repair or even a full windscreen replacement soon after. Repair work can be impeded by a number of factors, other than poor repair techniques, including:
A Dirty Windscreen
Technicians need to completely clean and dry chip impacts so the resin can cure properly. There is also a risk of dirt or moisture being present that isn’t visible to the eye. Expert technicians, like those at Emergency Windscreens, know how to mitigate this risk and ensure a high quality, safe repair.
Local Weather Conditions
Reliable windscreen repair services, like Emergency Windscreens, have dedicated workspaces or techniques. This prevents prevent weather conditions from influencing the success of your windscreen repair. The resin used to repair your windscreen bonds with the damaged glass, strengthening it and preventing the damage from spreading. This process happens quickly, so we can get you back on the road quickly and safely. However, low temperatures and/or too much moisture in the air can affect the resin curing process. A good technician will know how to repair your windscreen without weather affecting the process.
Complex or Severe Windscreen Damage
Before beginning a repair, trained and qualified technicians, like those at Emergency Windscreens, will assess whether or not your windscreen can be repaired or if it needs to be entirely replaced. A windscreen might need replacing if the chips are too large to repair, occur within the driver’s field of vision, if there are chips that have been previously repaired, or have turned into cracks. A professional will be able to tell you when a chip can’t be repaired.
If you have a chip or a crack, it is important you get it repaired by a professional repair service like Emergency Windscreens. Our team can tell you if your windscreen can be repaired or if a replacement is required. And our mobile team can come to you wherever you are, ensuring your windscreen is expertly repaired and safe to drive as soon as possible. Contact our team today for more information today!