Driving around with a cracked windshield is pretty common amongst most drivers. If it is not in your line of vision, why should you replace the windshield, right? Although a small ding may look harmless, the dangers actually begin to appear with time. A hairline crack that is no larger than an inch can turn into a massive spider web in a matter of weeks, proving the importance of proper windshield maintenance.
Temperature Can Make a Cracked Windshield Worse
Both hot and cold climates can cause an already damaged windshield to become more severe. If you notice that a rock hits your windshield and creates a small crack, keep track of its growth over time.
Because your windshield is made up of layers of glass, having a crack indicates that the outer layer has been compromised. Although there is still another layer underneath to protect you while you drive, one wrong move, and it could shatter entirely.
In places where the temperature is known to drop below freezing, it is stated that cracks are 60% more likely to spread. The same theory applies to hot climates, as well.
Moisture is another factor to be aware of. If it begins to rain or snow, the water can seep into the crack and make the glass even more fragile. If that water reaches a freezing point, it can even expand and create brand new cracks, so what started out as one problem becomes multiple problems!
The temperature does not even need to be extreme in order for it to affect your windshield. Sometimes your AC unit or defrosting system can also greatly impact those dings and cracks, according to Windshield Wonder, who does Windshield replacement in NJ.
Light Impact is Dangerous with A Damaged Windshield
Each time that you are on a road that contains speed bumps or even potholes, you will probably feel unpleasant as you drive. It’s a no-brainer, you would choose to drive on a newly paved road if you could! That is not always the case though, especially if you live in a large city with plenty of traffic traveling along the roads.
Not only is being on a bumpy road unpleasant as a driver, but it is also detrimental to your damaged windshield. The vibration that flows through the cracked glass has the ability to weaken it over time.
As Speers Auto Glass (http://www.speersautoglass.ca/windshield-repair-replacement/5-conditions-that-can-make-windshield-damage-worse/) warns, even everyday activities such as closing your car door or slamming on your brakes can have the same effect. Even if you think that you are being careful regarding your windshield, virtually any impact can be felt throughout the entire vehicle.
If you are unable to replace your windshield right away, be gentle on your car. The less impact, the less likely you are to put a stress on the crack.
You Become Susceptible to More Damage
Driving through a construction zone or past a lawnmower is already risky on its own. Naturally, being within close proximity of powerful machines and tools makes for a higher risk of debris hitting your car. With an already cracked windshield, you become an even bigger target.
As advised by Kryger Glass (https://www.krygerglass.com/windshield-worries-cracks-construction/), even when you drive past a truck that has loose gravel inside of its bed, the risk of being hit with a flying rock or other debris is big. Unfortunately, there is no way to really predict or prevent this, aside from taking a detour when you see something like this.
Another way to end up with more cracks in your windshield is by driving behind big rigs. These trucks have mud flaps over their tires that work in two different ways. They are meant to keep the tires clean, but they are also great at flinging rocks in your direction that may become loose from the treads.
You Shouldn’t Ignore It
Overall, the consensus is pretty clear – Ignoring windshield damage will not make your driving experience any safer. The cracks that you are able to see with your own eyes are only the beginnings of the damage going on underneath the surface.
You may think that since you have a crack on the passenger side of your windshield, it will not be worth it to replace the entire thing. Bringing your car in for a service estimate could prove this to be true. Even if the whole windshield does not need to be replaced, a glass expert may advise a repair that will tend to the damaged area only.
With all of the different services that can be provided nowadays, it makes the most sense to just take care of the problem once you notice it. If you don’t have time to drop your car off at a shop, there are companies that will come to your home and repair/replace the glass in your own driveway!