We’ve all seen people driving around with a crack in their windshield. In fact, this is a very common hazard of driving that most of us will likely experience at one point or another. Hailstorms, gravel roads, debris from the semi in front of you on the highway… windshield hazards, one and all.
We know that no one plans to get a windshield crack, so it may take a few days before you’re able to get it repaired by a professional. But if you continue to drive your car with a windshield crack, you run the risk of making it worse. Since most of us have no choice but to drive our cars nearly every day (to work, the grocery store, to pick up the kids from soccer practice, etc.) we have a few tips on how to keep a windshield crack from spreading until you can have it repaired.
1. Seal It Up
Sealing the crack in your windshield can help keep it from spreading. Your windshield glass is a solid piece of glass that stays in one piece by evenly distributing pressure. Filling the crack – a weakness that disturbs the weight distribution – makes the glass more stable and less likely to put pressure on the rest of your windshield, which is what causes further cracking. It also prevents dust and dirt from settling into the cracks, which can worsen the crack and make it more difficult to repair.
There are a few substances you can use to seal your windshield crack. Clear tape, super glue, and even clean nail polish are all viable options. Keep in mind that this is not a long term solution and we do not recommend that you drive your car around like this for more than a few days. This is more of an emergency stop-gap to keep the damage from spreading.
2. Take It Easy
Obviously, you would never speed around corners, slam your brakes in sudden stops, or whip through traffic on the highway…right? Of course not. But even though you’re always a very safe and conscientious driver, you should be even more so when you have a crack in your windshield.
Pay special attention to the road and try to avoid potholes, speedbumps, slamming your brakes, and driving on gravel or rocky terrain. The vibrations and jarring can cause your windshield crack to get worse or – in extreme cases – even shatter.
Even slamming your car doors too hard can put unnecessary stress on the glass and cause the windshield crack to spread. So just be gentle with your car for the next few days until you can get to the windshield repair shop.
3. Park Indoors or in the Shade
If at all possible, try to park your car in a garage or under a carport. This keeps it away from direct sunlight which can cause the glass to warp or expand, which will make the crack worse. It also ensures that your windshield isn’t hit by anything falling from overhead such as hail, falling branches, or the neighbor kid’s basketball.
If you don’t have access to covered parking, try to park in a shaded area. This keeps your car out of harsh sunlight and the glass warping temperature fluctuations that come with it. If that’s also impossible, just get the crack fixed as soon as possible to limit its exposure to hazards.
4. Avoid Drastic Temperatures
Heat makes glass expand while cold causes it to contract. When you have a windshield crack, avoid exposing your windshield to drastic changes in temperature. If it goes from hot to cold (or vice versa) too quickly, the glass can warp and crack, causing further damage. Or worse – a new crack!
Instead, let the temperature adjust gradually. On cold days, defrost your car slowly. On hot days, turn on the A/C at a low level first.
5. Repair the Windshield Crack
A windshield crack can only be protected for so long; eventually, you have to get it repaired or replaced to solve the problem. So as soon as you see that crack forming, contact Fast Glass Service. We’ll get you safely back on the road within a few hours!