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Can Your Vehicle's Windshield Shatter If You Fail To Repair Minor Cracks?

Does your car's windshield have minor cracks that require repair? If so, you shouldn't wait long to fix the damage. While minor cracks may seem harmless, they can hinder visibility and affect the safety of vehicle occupants. Over time, small cracks can even cause the windshield to shatter. Although the windshield won't break and spray shards of glass all over your car, it will cost you a lot of money to replace. Therefore, take note of these factors that can cause your cracked windshield to shatter if you fail to repair it.

Extreme Temperature Fluctuations

Extreme temperature fluctuations cause your windshield to expand and contract rapidly. The sudden change in temperatures exerts pressure on the glass, causing existing cracks to widen. Over time, the cracks can compromise the integrity of the windshield, causing it to shatter. Below are instances where temperature fluctuations can damage your windshield.

  • Parking in the sun: Parking your car in the sun can cause the auto glass to absorb heat and expand and contract rapidly. This stresses the glass and extends existing fractures.
  • Defrosting the glass: If your windshield is frozen, you shouldn't blast the AC or use hot water to defrost it. The sudden change in temperature can shatter the glass or cause the cracks to deepen.
  • Exposing the cracks to moisture: Moisture trapped in windshield cracks can expand and contract with temperature changes. This causes internal pressure in the glass and increases the risk of shattering.

If your windshield has minor cracks, avoid the above mistakes as you wait to repair it. Park your car in enclosed areas to protect the glass from severe solar heat, moisture, and snow.

Bad Driving Habits

Bad driving habits can worsen windshield cracks and cause the glass to shutter. For example, driving over speed bumps at high speed or braking suddenly puts additional stress on the car and worsens existing cracks. Similarly, if you get involved in a minor collision accident, the cracks will prevent the windshield from transferring the impact as it should. Instead, the fractured portion of the glass will absorb the impact, which will crack it further or shatter the windshield.

Impact From Debris

Driving on gritty roads with a cracked windshield can cause it to shutter. Small stones can fly onto the glass and hit existing cracks, damaging the auto glass further. Similarly, flying debris from loaded heavy-duty vehicles can damage your cracked windshield and cause it to shatter. Therefore, avoid driving on gritty roads with fractured auto glass. Also, do not drive behind loaded construction vehicles or garbage trucks. 

You can avoid incurring the huge cost of windshield replacement by repairing small cracks immediately they occur on the glass. Contact an auto repair professional for windshield repair services.