To Replace, or Not to Replace, Side Door Windows

We all seemingly know what to do when our windshield is damaged or destroyed. We make an appointment, we get it replaced, and we continue on our merry way. The process is similar for side windows as well, but a more common question would be whether you should repair or replace your side windows. The answer to this questions relies on two separate factors, condition and cost. So, without further ado, let’s get this question answered!

Replacement

If your window has been completely smashed, or smashed to the point where only partial fragments of the window remain, then the only solution is replacement. Even in scenarios where the window is still intact but the window track is damaged, the window will have to be replaced. The make and model of your car also factor into the replacement, but it doesn’t change the fact that you’ll need some new auto glass if your side door window has been busted.

Repair

If you bring your car into the shop and your side window only has a crack or a few chips on it, then repairing the window is in your best interest. Luckily for you, this is the more affordable option! However, the one caveat here is the state of the crack or chips upon arrival. A small chip on your side window requires little effort to repair, and doesn’t pose a huge risk to the overall health of your side window. On the other hand, if you arrive and your side window has several large cracks, then repair is likely not an option. When several large cracks are present, there is no stability to help back up the overall integrity of the window. In cases like these, replacement is the much safer option.

Cost

9 times out of 10, replacing a window is more expensive than repairing it. However, there are exceptions. For example, a window can be labeled “repairable”, but it might cost the vehicle owner less to replace the window outright than to repair it. If you’re unsure as to what the best course of action is, our expert technicians can help make the call in regards to the safest, most cost effective option.

When it comes to auto glass replacement and repair, Windshield Centers is your go to destination. Call us at 585-957-7080, or fill out our online contact form!

What to Do If Your Window is Broken

Whether you’re running errands or simply leaving for work in the morning, odds are you want your car to be fully intact when you go to drive it. Exiting your house to find one of your car windows smashed in is definitely a bad way to start the day, to say the least. Regardless of whether it’s the result of theft or some freak accident, you’re going to have to tend to your broken auto glass. We’re here to offer some tips on what to do after your window has been broken.

1.) Call Your Insurance Company and File a Police Report

If your broken window is the result of a break-in and not some natural event, leave everything undisturbed until you call your insurance company and file a police report. Sometimes both the police and insurance companies will take all the details over the phone, and other times they will want to come to you in person to write up the report. If your situation falls into the latter, and the insurance company and police want to come in person, then clean nothing. This way, they can fully assess the situation without your interference. If they aren’t coming in person, make sure you take pictures that accurately capture the damage.

2.) Clean the Glass

One of the easiest ways to clean up shattered glass is with a vacuum, so grab a vacuum and clear as much glass as possible. You should keep in mind that when you bring your car in for a new window, the technicians at the shop will also vacuum your car. So, you don’t have to worry about getting all of the glass. Also, be sure to empty the glass from the vacuum before putting it away.

3.) Cover Your Window

Once the two previous steps are all said and done, try your best to secure the window. Doing so will help keep any elements from the outdoors, such as rain or snow, from entering your vehicle until the window can be addressed, and thus protects your interior. A couple of examples of materials you can use are clear packing tape and/or a trash bag. Various other methods can be employed to cover up your window, it just depends on which one works best for your specific situation. Just be sure not to get any of the clear packing tape on the paint of your car, as it can cause the paint to peel.

Having all of your car windows intact is important. After all, they are there for a reason! After going through the motions of filing a report, if necessary, and cleaning up the initial mess, come on down to Windshield Centers. Our professionals will replace the window and have you on your way in no time. Call us at (585) 957-7080, or fill out our online contact form!

Protecting Cracked & Broken Glass Before a Windshield Repair

Windshield damage is an often-unavoidable fact of life. It can be sustained from weather changes, rocks being kicked up by the car in front of you, or acorns falling from trees, among other causes. How you go about handling glass damage can affect the type of repair you need.

The first thing you should do when examining a windshield crack is make sure that it does not block your view of the road. Many cracks start out small, but pressure from varying weather conditions and other objects hitting the glass could lead to the crack expanding. While small cracks and dings can generally be repaired, cracks longer than six inches require window replacement and increase the cost and urgency of the service. Measure the crack as soon as possible after it happens, and keep an eye on it to make sure it does not expand. You should also take a picture of the damage for your insurance company, who will want a full description of the damage and, if possible, how it was sustained. If the damage begins at the edge of the window, it will need to be replaced quickly because glass will be more prone to shatter and the vehicle will not be safe to drive.

After filing a claim with your insurance company, there are several measures you can take to prevent the crack from growing before the repair. If the crack does not block your view of the road, you can put a piece of clear masking tape over the damage to keep the area clean and sealed, much like a band aid. Avoid parking directly in the sun, as heat can further warp the damage and make it more difficult to repair. Park in the shade or in a garage when possible. During warmer months, refrain from blasting your air conditioner as soon as you get in the car. Temperature change is the most likely thing to contribute to windshield damage. Open your windows and doors to cool your car before driving, or run your air conditioner on the lower settings. To avoid jostling the glass further, avoid potholes, drive carefully over speed-bumps, and close your doors gently.

If the damage to your windshield is more extensive, you will need to get a replacement. If the glass has shattered, use a vacuum to remove small shards of glass and your gloved hands to pick up larger pieces. Wipe down the edge of the window frame with a damp cloth to catch anything that could get caught in the crack. Use the clear masking tape in strips to cover the window in a grid, both in and out of the car. Please note that this is not recommended for driving as the tape will be in your line of vision if you are fixing your windshield.

While some of these measures can help you put off a repair or replacement for a bit, the crack is ultimately in glass and will need to be worked on. Windshield Centers is a leading auto glass repair shop in the greater Rochester and Buffalo, NY. You can come to our repair shop or we will bring the repair to you at home, work or school. Contact us online or at (800) 900-1505 to schedule windshield repair or replacement services today.

Common Driving Safety Misconceptions

We have all heard this question before; Do you consider yourself a good driver? The answer to that question 90% of the time is yes. However, their are many common misconceptions about safe driving habits. To figure out what we believe to be true is a myth or not, here is a list of the most common misconceptions about driving.


  • The Left Lane is the Fast Lane
    – Many drivers believe the left lane is the fast lane because it is always moving and more people use it to go fast. This is false however, because the left lane is recommended as the passing lane. Vehicles should only use the left lanes to pass other cars in the middle lane(s). In addition, with the high volume of cars travelling in the left lane, the lane will start to slow down and become a stop and go.
  • Fog Lights Help At All Times – Many drivers drive at night with their fog lights on even though it may not be foggy outside. Fog lights are designed for when it is so foggy out, that headlights reflect off the fog. Using them when it is clear out is hazardous, as it blinds other drivers on the road.
  • The Posted Speed Limit is the Safest – The speed limit posted on roads are speeds that are calculated when the conditions on the road are perfect. They do not account for wet roads, snowy weather, rain, etc. This is why when the weather conditions are bad, it is safer to drive slower than the posted speed limit.
  • Hands Free Is The Exception – Many drivers know that using a phone while driving is bad, but it still happens. The misconception is that using a hands-free device is the loophole to using a phone while driving. Your hands may not be occupied, but talking on the phone in general makes you a distracted driver. The best bet is to not use your device at all.

  • Within The Limit? You’re Good To Go
    – All drivers know it is illegal to drink and drive, yet there is a misconception that if your BAC is within the limit, it is OK to drive. Drinking has a lot of side effects including delayed reaction and judgment impairment. These side effects can start from your first drink. If you plan on drinking, it is safe to have a designated driver with you or find a different way of transportation so you are not behind the wheel of a car.
  • Bigger Means Safer – Some believe that the bigger the car you have, the safer you will be in regards to accidents. It is true if a crash between a smaller car and a bigger car was to happen, the bigger car will fare better. However, bigger vehicles have a larger mass which causes the ability to change direction and slow down to be less efficient. This may increase the chance of a single-vehicle collision into trees or guardrails.

 

Windshield Centers provides windshield replacement and repair services in Rochester and Buffalo, NY. Contact us online or at (800) 900-1505 to schedule windshield repair or replacement services today.

Five Tips for Staying Safe on the Road this Fall

Every season presents its own unique challenges for driving safely. For fall drivers, some of the challenges faced on the road include slick streets covered with wet leaves, an influx of new drivers as school starts, thick morning fog, sun glare, and increased traffic from woodland animals.

Wet and slippery conditions are one of the most distinct dangers about the fall season. While the spring is also known as the rainy season, the fall is also very wet in general. This is made extra dangerous by the fact that fallen leaves on the road are also very slippery. This can significantly increase the amount of time it takes to come to a stop while driving, and lead to skidding on the road.

The fall also means back to school time for many parents and teenagers. Not only will there be more buses and parents driving their kids to school in the morning, but there will also be many more teenage drivers on the road. This surge in morning traffic can cause frustration for many drivers, as their morning routine is suddenly disrupted. Be sure to give yourself more time in the morning before hitting the road.

Another reason to drive extra careful in the morning is fog. Cold fall mornings can be one of the worst times for fog. Use your fog lights; don’t use high beams because it will create glare, which makes it even more difficult to see.

Fall is one of the most common seasons for animal travel because of the mating season. Deer crossings are common in the fall. Heed the warnings of crossing signs. If you see one deer cross, wait for other to cross because they usually travel together.

 

Windshield Centers is a leading auto glass repair shop located in the greater Buffalo & Rochester, NY areas. Contact us online or at (800) 900-1505 to schedule windshield repair or replacement services today.

 

Highway Safety Act Anniversary

This week, in 1966, Congress passed the Highway Safety Act. This significant piece of legislation ushered in the creation of the National Highway Safety Bureau, which would later become the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).

Throughout the 1960’s, motor accidents were becoming the leading cause of deaths among adult Americans. In 1965 alone, 49,000 Americans died in motor accidents.

The Highway Safety Act of 1966 allowed lawmakers to make improvements to both vehicle and highway design in order to improve safety. Countless safety features in vehicles became commonplace due to the Act, such as: headrests, seat belts, and strong, shatter-resistant windshields. Highways were improved as well, with the addition of reflectors, breakaway signs, barriers, and guardrails making highway driving safer.

Changes in driving laws and safety standards brought many changes to the road and automobile manufacturing. Over the course of the next several years, the changes were recognized to have a serious positive impact for driver’s safety. The rate of fatal accidents decreased.

Without this significant piece of legislation, we would not have the standards for auto glass safety that we do today. Several Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standards created specifications for the transparency of auto glass, windshield mounting standards, and the length of permissible penetration in windshields.

 

Windshield Centers is a leading auto glass repair shop located in the greater Buffalo & Rochester, NY areas. Contact us online or at (800) 900-1505 to schedule windshield repair or replacement services today.

How to Protect your Windshield

Over time, every part of the automobile takes on stress and damage. It is just a reality of being on the road and out in the elements. The windshield is no different. The windshield is a key structural component for every automobile. It helps support the roof in rollovers and helps keep the structure of the car intact in front end collisions. But over time, the windshield begins to lose its strength, leading to cracking and chipping that requires replacement or repair. There are, however, a few things you can do to keep your windshield healthy over time:

  • As we have mentioned in our glass cleaning blog, ammonia-based cleaning products are damaging to auto glass. Avoid using these cleaners because they will damage the tint on your auto glass.
  • In the winter, windshields are especially prone to damage. If you get a crack on your windshield during the winter, you should get it fixed right away. In the meantime, however, avoid putting your defrosters on the windshield because the heat can cause the crack to spread quicker.
  • Keep your distance. Avoid tailgating any commercial trucks because they could be carrying something that will let off debris. Construction and gravel trucks are especially dangerous to drive behind.
  • Avoid slamming your car doors. The reverberation from slamming a door can actually slowly damage a windshield, and slamming your door will definitely spread minor damage if done hard enough. Slamming your car door can also cause damage to your power windows and door latch.

Your windshield is a key safety feature to your automobile. Protect it using these tips. For more information about auto glass safety, visit our blog or contact us online.