If any of your car, truck, or SUV windows developed a chip or crack this past spring or summer, then you may have put off having it repaired due to simple procrastination or just not wanting to spend the cash. Over the summer, you may have grown so used to the chip or crack being there that you learned to visually "tune it out" and, due to the upcoming holiday season, decided to put off having it repaired even longer to avoid the hassle of dealing with the repair during the already stressful holiday months. However, there are two important reasons to have that chip or crack repaired before winter arrives in full force, so read on to learn just why putting that auto glass repair off any longer could lead to a disaster.
1. Muddy Winter "Slush" Could Lead to That Crack Impairing Your Vision when Driving
Whether your local weather forecaster has predicted a mild winter or a harsh one, you likely already know that weather predictions can end up being very wrong and you never really know how bad a winter will be until it arrives. While a crack or chip in a window is already obstructing your view of the road, even if you think you have learned to "tune it out" visually, that crack or chip could become a huge vision obstruction if that winter "slush" on the road splatters onto your window and becomes temporarily embedded in the crack. That slush mixes with dirt easily and often becomes a muddy mess.
Think you can just turn on your windshield wipers to clear the mud that becomes embedded in the crack? Don't feel so confident that your wipers will remove the huge vision obstruction. Remember that your windshield wipers only clear the surface of your window; they will be of little help to clear that mud from that crack or chip as they pass over the window and may even push more mud into it as they clear it from the rest of your window.
In fact, even if you were to pull off to the side of the road (which is hazardous in itself) and attempt to clean out the muddy crack or chip with a cloth, the dirt particles likely won't come out as easily as you expect. Even auto glass repair professionals have trouble removing dirt and debris from window cracks before they repair them; if your crack gets too dirty, or "contaminated" before being repaired, you may end up needing a brand new windshield, which is much more costly than a simple repair.
To avoid getting into an auto collision due to simple procrastination gone wrong, just get that auto glass crack or chip repaired as soon as possible so you can feel confident when driving.
2. Temperature Fluctuations Will Cause That Crack or Chip to Spread
As you likely know, winter temperatures are far from stable, especially when winter is first arriving. Temperatures can drop well below freezing at night and then warm up during the day. One day could also be extremely cold and the next so warm that it feels like spring again. What you may not know is that as those winter temperatures fluctuate, the glass on your windshield, like all glass, expands when it is heated and contracts when it is cold.
Even if outdoor temperatures remain stable, when you turn on the heat in your car in the winter and the interior of your vehicle window becomes warm while the outside of it is still cold, this causes the glass to endure "thermal stress."
While auto glass is built to withstand this stress when it is not damaged, the crack or chip in your windshield is not. That crack will worsen as it endures thermal stress over the winter, and that chip can turn into a crack. If that crack gets too long (while some auto glass repair professionals will only repair cracks 6 inches or shorter, others may repair cracks up to 18 inches in some circumstances), then the only option will be to replace that window, which will cost you much more money than repairing it.
Remember that you should always repair a cracked or chipped vehicle window as soon as it becomes damaged, especially if it is on your windshield or rear window. However, if you have gotten lucky and that window crack or chip has not led to you getting in a vehicle accident or spread to the point where it is not repairable, then don't press your luck any further and obtain auto glass repair before your "luck' runs out.
Visit an auto glass repair shop, like Becky's Glass Works, as soon as you can.