Did you know that a windshield provides up to 30% of a vehicles structural strength? In a crash it supports the roof, and helps the airbags deploy and prevents you from being thrown from the vehicle. If your windshield is compromised by a glass chip or crack, your safety is being compromised as well.
A chipped windshield can develop a crack at any time – and often when you least expect it. That’s why it’s important to repair a windshield chip as soon as you spot it. If left untreated, it may require a complete windshield replacement in the future, which will be hundreds more than a glass chip repair would be. The longer you leave a windshield chip, the more likely it is to get worse.
While a windshield chip can choose to crack at any time, there are several factors that will add to progression from a chip to a crack.
Cold Weather Stress
In colder weather conditions, windshields bend into a more concave shape. As a result, glass chips and dings are more likely to spread in a horizontal fashion as the windshield changes shape. According to a study conducted by the Motor Industry Research Association (MIRA), chips were likely to spread more than 80% of the time at temperatures of 14 degrees. Chips tested at 32 degrees were nearly 60% more likely to crack.
Warm Weather Stress
Warm weather can be equally as detrimental to your glass chip. Warmer temperatures often cause chips to spread into vertical cracks. The same study conducted by the MIRA suggests that heat distorts the shape of the windshield glass, which can lead to cracking by itself. The cooling effects of having your air conditioning unit on makes chips even more likely to crack.
Driving & Fatigue Stress
Increased pressure on the windshield can cause a chip to turn into a crack at a moments notice. Speed bumps, potholes, and uneven terrain can quickly create a crack while you are driving. The force travels through the car and puts additional pressure on the edges of the chip.
Sound like Michiganders can relate to any of the above conditions? Although it’s not possible to say how long it will take for a chip to spread, it’s a ticking bomb that can easily be prevented from exploding. Call us today before you’re breaking the piggy bank for a complete windshield repair!