Five Ways To Avoid Auto Windshield Damage

A damaged front windshield isn't just unsightly, it can also compromise the entire safety of your vehicle since poor visibility increases the chances of a car accident. Knowing how to prevent windshield damage is a must. 

1. Keep Your Distance

A major cause of windshield damage is from rocks and gravel on the road, which are thrown up on your car by the vehicles traveling in front of you. Always follow at a safe following distance of several car lengths. Not only does this provide more safety in the event of an accident, but it will also cut down on the chances of a rock shattering your window. This is especially true when following behind larger vehicles, as they are more likely to throw rocks up.

2. Avoid Construction Zones

Construction zones can be a major hazard for many reasons, and window damage is one of those reasons. This is especially true if there is repaving work or concrete cutting involved since this will result in rocks and gravel on the roadway. Avoid construction zones as much as possible. If you can't avoid a zone, then travel slowly and at an increased following distance.

3. Change Your Wipers

Believe it or not, your windshield wipers can damage your front window. Old wipers or wipers used on a dry window can cause small abrasions on the surface of the glass. Over time, these abrasions result in a hazy windshield that is difficult to see through. Further, moisture can collect in these small scratches. When the moisture freezes and expands, more damaging cracks may appear. Change your wipers often and never use them on a dry window.

4. Prevent Thermal Shock

Thermal shock is more likely to affect a windshield that already has some damage, such as a deep scratch or small chip. Avoidance is most necessary in the winter months. For example, never pour hot water on a windshield to de-ice it. Further, heat up the interior of the car slowly -- blowing a hot defroster onto a frozen window can cause thermal shock.

5. Repair Small Damage Immediately

The smallest chip can lead to a huge crack and the need for a new windshield if you ignore it. Much like etching, moisture can get into the chip and cause it to get larger. This can happen quite quickly. If your windshield has a small crack or a chip smaller than a half-dollar coin, then it can likely be repaired.

If your windshield does suffer a major crack, don't hesitate to contact an auto glass replacement service. Your safety depends on it.