A windshield is much more than its name would suggest. Sure, it’s a tough piece of glass that ‘shields you from the wind,’ but it’s also a sophisticated piece of technology designed to contribute to the structural integrity of your car, truck, or SUV’s body. This means that in the event of a rollover, it’s able to help protect you and other occupants by resisting the crushing force of your vehicle’s own weight. So, it’s not just any piece of glass, and it takes a skilled fitter to replace it.
Replacing a windshield is straightforward, but then so is juggling, and neither skill is easy to do well unless you’re practiced. These days the fitter needs to consider if the windshield has features such as brake assist or rain sensors, as these may require extra care and will need to be properly reconnected.
The fitter will detach any trim and molding around the edge of the glass, and then set about removing the old adhesive, stripping it away from the outside with a suitable blade, then the damaged glass is removed.
Next, a continuous bead of adhesive is applied to the exposed frame and the new glass is lifted gently (and precisely) into place using saucer sized suction cups. It’s important to do this swiftly and accurately as the quick-drying nature of the adhesive leaves an effective working time of only 15 minutes.
In 30 minutes to an hour the adhesive will be dry. Modern sealants form a molecular bond between the new glass and the car frame, creating an airtight seal, but it won’t be fully cured for 24 hours.
It’s best not to cover your car during this time, and to avoid car washing too. Also, you should try not to slam doors because that perfect airtight seal may experience a brief increase in internal pressure, enough to pop the windshield out. If you (or someone small and forgetful) won’t remember not to slam doors, you could try leaving a window very slightly open to give any pressure a better escape route.
Usually your local Handy service shop will charge you nothing or just the cost of your insurance deductible, because most insurance policies cover the expense. And the shop will handle all the details directly through your insurance carrier, so you won’t have to contact the carrier yourself and jump through hoops over the phone.
Other services we offer: