Vehicle maintenance should never be overlooked. However, all too often, we only check our cars close to vehicle testing or auditing dates. The same is true when it comes to servicing costs – and our desire to get the cheapest option. While there are good strategies to get the best maintenance for your budget, you should never opt for the cheapest option. Today we are going to discuss why you need to keep up your vehicle maintenance. We are also discussing when you should choose a windscreen repair or replacement.
What is a Windscreen?
While you might think your windscreen is simply a curved sheet of glass, it is actually a vital safety feature of your vehicle. Your windscreen is a key component to the structural integrity of your car. It supports the roof and adds rigidity should your car roll.
Your windscreen is made with two sheets of glass with a clear plastic layer between them. These are fused together in a process known as lamination. If you have seen smashed windscreen, the lamination process helps hold the glass pieces together.
Your windscreen also ensures you have an unobstructed view of the road. As a result, you need to ensure you get damaged repaired as soon as possible.
Let’s discuss windscreen damage, and what damage needs repair or replacing.
Sometimes your windscreen may develop a white haze around the edge of the glass. But this can be more than a cosmetic problem. The plastic used in your windscreen helps ensure sharp pieces of glass do not hit passengers or pedestrians in the event of a crash.
However, when your car is out in the sun, the sun heats up the laminate. This haze often indicates that the glass and plastic are beginning to separate. As a result, in an accident, glass might fly free, causing further injury. Your windscreen will require replacement to ensure the safety of the windscreen.
If you drive daily, especially on unpaved roads, your windshield is exposed to a number of flying elements. These include pebbles, sharp objects, gravel, and more. This damage, over time, causes pitting. They are more noticeable at sunrise and sunset. The pits scatter reflected light, making it difficult for you to see properly.
A windscreen damaged by pitting is also a risk in the rain, as the windscreen will not clear as quickly or easily. This requires a fully windscreen replacement.
3: Small Scratches, Cracks and Chips
A scratch in your windscreen is similar to a crack, except it does not go all the way through the glass.
Most scratches can be repaired without any issue, as long as you have them fixed immediately. If you leave a scratch too long, it can get clogged up with dust and dirt.
Chips are the most common type of windscreen damage. However, chips can also turn into cracks if left untreated. And, unfortunately, cracks may require and entire windscreen replacement rather than a repair.
When it comes to cracks, small cracks can be repaired – but must be no more than the size of a 20 cent piece. If the crack is directly in the driver’s line of sight, or there are more than three cracks or chips in the glass, your windscreen needs to be replaced. Never take small chips or cracks for granted as they can spread quickly.
Damage around the centre of the glass is generally easier to repair. Cracks along the edge of the glass generally need replacement as they weaken the glass.
The best thing to do is call a professional windscreen repair or replacement service – like Emergency Windscreens – to advise you on your windscreen damage.
How is a Windscreen Replacement Performed?
During a windscreen replacement, an expert technician removes the trim around the inside and outside perimeter of the windscreen. The sealant is also cut away.
The technician then lifts the damaged windscreen out using industrial strength suction cups. Old sealant is cleaned away and a new bead of sealant is applied to the windscreen mounting service.
The new windscreen is put in place and seated in the sealant. Trim is refitted to the exterior and interior of the windscreen. Finally, the windscreen is secured with adhesive tape – temporarily – while the sealant cures.
Is It Important to Replace Your Windscreen?
The short answer is, yes! While driving with a damaged windscreen might not seem like a big deal, it can be dangerous in an emergency situation. It is also illegal to drive a car with damage over the driver’s side of the windscreen. It is not all about a clear line of sight. A cracked windscreen can reduce your car’s safety in the event of a collision or rollover.
Concerned about a chip, crack or scratch in your windscreen? Contact the experts at Emergency windscreens today for helpful advice and our convenient mobile service.