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Have you ever been driving down the highway, minding your own business, when suddenly a flying rock hits your windshield? You’re glad to be safe, but now you must act fast to prevent that chip from growing. Here’s a look at the hazards of cracked windshields and how to stop windshield cracks from spreading until you can seek professional windshield repair.

Why is a Cracked Windshield Dangerous?

Rock chips are frustrating, no doubt about it. But even if your schedule is hectic, you should make windshield repair a priority. The longer you wait, the more likely the crack will spread. Dirt buildup also makes it more difficult to perform a successful repair. Here’s why you should act sooner than later to get your windshield repaired:

  • A cracked windshield makes accidents more dangerous. The windshield contributes to the structural integrity of your vehicle. If you get into a rollover accident, the roof is more likely to cave in if the windshield is cracked, increasing the chances of a serious injury or fatality.
  • A cracked windshield is distracting. Cracks in the glass reflect light into your eyes, which can distract or even blind you. This is why police officers can ticket you for driving with a cracked windshield.
  • A cracked windshield is unattractive. Whether you plan on selling your car or not, you want it to look its best! Replacing the windshield when it gets cracked shows you take pride in the car you drive.

How to Stop a Crack in the Windshield

There are a couple of methods car owners can try to stop or slow the spread of a windshield crack.

Use a Windshield Repair Kit

Windshield repair kits are available for purchase at local hardware stores. To use this, you must be comfortable boring a small hole into the top layer of glass with a 1/16-inch drill bit. Next, force the specialized resin from the repair kit into the hole to seal the glass, reduce stress on the windshield, and stop cracks from forming. If you do the job well, this may be the only repair you need. If you haven’t done anything like this before, it may be wise to request assistance from someone who has experience.

Avoid Sudden Temperature Changes

Glass expands in hot weather and contracts when it gets cold. If you direct a heating vent at your chipped windshield in cold weather, this may cause the crack to spread abruptly. To prevent this from happening, park your car in the shade when possible and avoid using the window defroster until you have the chip repaired.

Schedule Windshield Repair or Replacement

Having a rock chip filled is a quick, easy, and affordable service. It’s always best to repair your windshield if you can. However, if the crack spreads longer than three inches, a repair may not be possible. There are many automotive glass technicians in the Carmel area, but our recommendation is to make an appointment with Safelite. If you have any questions about windshield cracks, give us a call, and we would be more than happy to help you navigate your thoughts towards the best course of action.