Important Note... we can not successfully perform a windshield chip repair that has previously been repaired or attempted to be repaired because once a repair has been completed the resin injected into the damage has cured or hardened preventing other attempts. This may be the case if you recently bought a used car. However, it could be that the windshield chip was never repaired while the car was at the dealership and thus the chip is still vulnerable to spread. If you are uncertain if your damage has been previously repaired, just give us a call and we can help you determine if it is repairable.
If you were in your vehicle when the rock smacked against your windshield and then you saw damage, it’s very likely you have a new chip or crack. If it is a new crack you should be able to see black and grey areas to the break that will confirm that there is indeed a separation in the glass and would qualify for our windshield chip repair service. Placing a white sheet of paper behind the damage on the inside of the windshield will often highlight the damage. See the pictures of the four chips below.
There are two different types of windshield damage we can repair: Chips and Single Long Cracks.
On this page I will focus on (type "A" damage) which are small types of damage about 1.25 inch in diameter or smaller commonly known as chips. A simple & effective method to tell if I can repair your damage or “chip” is to place a .50 half dollar coin (or quarter) over the damaged area. Most common damage are repairable up to this size. If using a quarter, I can repair cracks extending up to 1/4 inch outside the quarter diameter. If you find your damage is repairable, you can schedule an appointment that best fits your schedule.
Tiny windshield chips: This is the most common windshield chip, and sometimes they are mistaken for damage that might spread. This minor damage, called a nick, will not spread because it only hit your windshield hard enough to remove glass from the surface, but not hard enough to cause a crack. In short a nick is a chip without the crack. The damage is often very small and looks like a small white spot. Usually it is best not to repair nicks, unless it is large leaving a very notice able divot with a shinny white area, or has a crack extending from it, as shown in these two examples below.
If there is a small crack hiding behind a nick, then it should be repaired as these can spread. Since this is a windshield chip repair guide…Here’s how to check: Place and hold a white sheet of paper or paper towel on the inside of the windshield directly behind the nick. Using the left picture as a guide, look on the outside of the windshield for a small crack that may resemble a black or silver line.
This larger nick is optional because though there is no actual crack in the windshield, it can be a distraction while driving on a sunny day by reflecting sunlight causing glare. Also, it can tear your windshield wiper blades as well. If you find this to be case… a professional windshield chip repair will greatly reduce the glare effect, smooth out it’s sharp edges, and look similar to that of a water spot.
To help aid with your inspection of a windshield chip, I recommend placing a piece of white paper behind the damage from inside the vehicle. This will help you see more detail of the chip more clearly, especially if the vehicle is in a garage or has dark interior.
When resin has been injected into a chip or crack and cured, it is permanent. The resin is now a solid and blocks our ability to re-repair the chip in most cases. Windshield chip repair offered as a add-on service by some shops do repairs so poorly it’s can be hard to tell that they repaired the damage. Enlarge the picture above and lets examine closer. Notice the impact point where the rock nicked away surface glass, grey and dull looking. If you notice certain areas of the break are clear but others still have spotty black areas, it is a indication the damage has already been repaired. Now look at the windshield chips that have not repaired in the photo below.
On the left are types of chip damage that have not been repaired and you should be able to see a distinct difference in appearance. First, the grey and black colors within the break are bold meaning it stands out. Second, if you take a pointed sharp object to the shinny white area called the impact point (usually in the middle of the damage) and scrape you will hear a gritty sound and feel. If it has already been repaired, it would have a more smooth sound and a tacky or sticky feel. Now you can discern between previously repaired breaks (even if they are poorly done) and ones that need to be repaired.
After viewing this windshield chip repair guide if you are still uncertain if your damage is repairable, you can send us a picture or your windshield damage. Please tape white paper from the inside of vehicle behind the break and take a picture from outside the vehicle, then give us a call. With a good photo our technician should be able to determine if your damage is repairable.