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Cracked windshield? Don’t put off repairing it. A little chip or crack on your windshield can grow into a big crack— right before your eyes.

Why the rush when it comes to windshield crack repair? First, in many states, it’s illegal to drive with a damaged windshield as it can impede your vision and is considered unsafe.1  Second, the damage may only get worse over time and if it does, you may be facing an expensive windshield replacement rather than a far less costly repair. If that becomes the case, however, talk to the credit professionals at Synchrony Car Care. They offer special financing* on purchases with the Car Care ONE credit card including for windshield replacement and at dealer enrolled locations.

Repair basics

A windshield crack repair can prevent further damage to your glass and restore the structural stability of the vehicle if the repair is done immediately. If rain and dirt have a chance to get inside the chip or crack, that can cause the damaged area to enlarge.
The repair will not be invisible: a slight blemish or imperfection where the impact occurred is normal.2

Whether using a professional auto glass repair service or doing it yourself, the process is basically the same:

Step 1
Clean the area around the chip or crack with alcohol or solvent, making sure that the crack is free of any loose shards of glass and debris.

Step 2
Special tools are required to force liquid resin material into the chip. The resin seals the chip and is designed to dry clear and blend with the windshield glass.

Step 3
Harden the resin with ultraviolet light.3

Tip: Until your cracked windshield is repaired, you can help protect the damaged area from moisture and dirt contamination by placing a small piece of clear packing tape over the point of impact.4

Do-it-yourself (DIY) repair

If you’re on a budget, consider repairing the damage yourself. There are many do-it-yourself windshield   chip and crack repair kits on the market, available at most mass-market and auto parts stores. The secret to success is to start with an absolutely dry windshield that's somewhere near room temperature. Dry is really essential—you don't want to trap any water in the repair. Use a hair dryer if the window is wet. If the glass surface is dirty, you can use lighter fluid or acetone to help dry and clean the surface. Be careful not to let it dribble down the glass or come in contact with your car’s paint, as peeling can result.5

Tip: Always follow the instructions that come with the windshield repair kit. Avoid making the repair in direct sunlight or if the windshield is hot to the touch.6

Damage that can’t be repaired

Not all chips and cracks can be successfully repaired. Here’s a list of those that cannot:

  • Cracks on the inside of the windshield

  • Deep damage on both layers of glass

  • Damage over the rain sensor or the internal radio antenna

  • Damage that reaches into the driver’s critical viewing area

  • Complex multiple cracks

  • Very long cracks (over 18 inches long)

  • Cracks contaminated with dirt and debris

  • Cracks or chips that start at or extend into the edge of the windshield 7

*Subject to credit approval. Minimum monthly payments required. Click here for more information.

Learn More:

http://www.safewindshields.org/

http://www.popularmechanics.com/cars/how-to/a77/easy-windshield-repair/

Sources:

1 http://www.carinsurance.com/cracked-windshield-law.aspx

2 https://www.safelite.com/contact-us/auto-glass-faqs/

3 http://www.carwindshields.info/windshield-chips-why-they-happen-when-and-why-to-repair

4http://www.cars.com/go/advice/Story.jsp?section=maintenance&subject=autodisasters&story=cracked-windshield-disaster&referer

5 http://www.popularmechanics.com/cars/how-to/a77/easy-windshield-repair/

6 http://www.edmunds.com/how-to/getting-clear-on-windshield-repair-kits.html

7 http://www.carwindshields.info/is-your-windshield-repairable

Additional Resources:

http://www.centennialglass.biz/Blog/tabid/96/entryid/4/how-dangerous-can-a-cracked-windshield-be.aspx

http://www.carwindshields.info/windshield-crack-types

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