A good rule of thumb is to see if your policy covers the replacement of your windshield prior to asking your insurer if they will change the glass on your car. In addition to your policy details, you also need to understand the type of damage your window has suffered and if it simply needs repairs as opposed to total replacement.
A good way to gauge the damage is to look at the size of the cracks, if it is larger than your hand, it needs to be replaced.
Any cracks that cross on the drivers side also require windshield replacement, if the crack is smaller than your hand, then you can have if filled by a mobile service.
Can my windshield be fixed?
There are a lot of companies who can fix your glass so well that you won’t know it was previously damaged. Having a crack in your glass filled is the best way to avert a full crack on your windshield. The cost of filling in a chip with resin is a lot cheaper that having your entire windshield replaced.
Often, your car insurance company will have the chip or crack repaired at no cost to you to prevent further damage and save on more expensive repairs.
Will a replacement be OEM quality?
If the damage to your windshield is severe enough to warrant replacement, you will be given a new piece of glass. The quality of the glass depends on the amount of coverage you have in your part replacement policy. There are additional options to assure that your replacement is OEM quality.
The majority of car insurers have allowances for aftermarket car repayment parts. While similar to original quality parts, they are much more affordable. This is a cost effect way for car insurance companies to manage expenses over the population.
In the even only OEM part were used, insurance would not be affordable for the general population. There are a few ways to assure you get OEM quality replacement part for your vehicle, you can;
A) Personally pay the balance from your own funds to cover the price gap of your policy. You can then ask the repair service for original quality glass. Typically the difference is a few hundred dollars, but you will have peace of mind.
B) When starting your policy, request that all of the replacement parts on your car be OEM quality, in this case, you will always receive original quality parts without placing special request. The premiums with this type of rider are typically higher.
Keep in mind that not every insurance company has an allowance for original quality replacement parts. It’s important to ask questions and shop around before you finalize any insurance policy.
Do replacement windshields leak? What can be done if I have seam leakage?
Seam leakage is the top concern among car owners who have had a windshield replaced. The majority of windshield replacements, be they OEM or aftermarket glass, don’t have problems with leakage.
The important thing is to assure that your replacement is done by a licensed garage that has plenty of experience in windshield replacement. There is still a small chance that you could run into trouble, but there are also steps you can take to protect yourself.
Ask for a warrantee on the work prior to having the windshield installed. Most reputable companies will offer a guarantee on their work and insurance companies offer guarantees on their approved body shops.
Before you get the work done, call your claims agent to get a direct referral to the insurance companies listed body shop for repairs. If there is a problem with the glass, you can report the issues to the insurance agency, but you also have to seek recourse from the body shop directly.
Advice for replacing your windshield
Before the work starts, ask the body shop if a primer is used on the surface. This is important since it get your car ready for the new windshield being installed, since priming a car is expensive, many body shops skip this step without informing the car owner.
In addition, it’s important that the person installing the glass wears protective gear on their hands. Any oils, even ones from people’s bodies can cause problems with the final adhering process between the metal and the glass. This is one of the number one causes for leaks in new windshields.
Can the work be done at home?
Windshield replacement is a very simple claim to process. Home service is offered and cost less that taking your car into the shop. Most companies have a mobile team that can come out to meet you at your home or office, the only time that an on-site job can be done is during snow or rain.