Safe Driving Misconceptions

There are so many misconceptions about safe driving and how the features in your car can help you drive safer. While this is true, it’s important not to rely on these safe driving features and make sure you are always abiding by the speed limit, looking where you’re going, and avoiding distractions. If you’re looking for new ways to improve your safe driving, protect those are you by avoiding these issues.

Driving  the Speed Limit is Safe

While most people might think that driving the speed limit at all times is safe, but sometimes it’s safer to be driving slower. The speed limits that are enforced in areas are placed under ideal conditions but when conditions become less than ideal, think rain, snow and sleet, driving the speed limit can actually be extremely dangerous. When it’s snowing, when the roads are slippery, and if there’s a storm, drive slow and take your time getting to your destination.

Driving Slower is Safer

Driving slower is safer when the road conditions are less than ideal but when the conditions are ideal, say a sunny day, driving slow (especially on the highway) can be dangerous. Cars will be entering and exiting at the correct speed limit and coming up on a car that is driving very slow can cause them to break harder than they were expecting, which can lead to car accidents.

Using a Hands-Free Device While Driving is Safe

While using a hands-free device while driving is safer than holding your device in your hand, the conversation you are having can be as distracting as it would be to be texting and driving. If you can, pull over to talk on the phone or wait until you get to your destination to catch your parents up on your day at work so you can focus on the road and those around you.

Tailgating a Car in Front of You Will Make them Drive Faster

In reality, tailgating the car in front of you will most likely cause them to drive slower. Being close to the car in front of you can also cause more damage if they were to stop short. Keep as much space between you and the car in front of you to avoid any issues.

The Left Lane is for Driving Fast

The left lane shouldn’t be driven in unless you are passing someone. You still need to abide by the speed limit in this lane.

Next time you get in your car, make sure to avoid these misconceptions and keep yourself and those around you safe.

advanced drivers assistance systems

The Importance of Advanced Drivers Assistance Systems (ADAS)

An increasing number of newer model vehicles are starting to include Advanced Drivers Assistance Systems (ADAS) that are intended to increase car safety thanks to a human-machine interface, keeping you and those around you safe. Although drivers are still responsible for safe driving, ADAS are helping avoid road accidents that occur due to human error. The technologies offer features and alert the driver to potential hazards, problems, and help avoid collisions.

How Do Advanced Drivers Assistance Systems Affect the Windshield?

Many Advanced Drivers Assistance Systems require several cameras and sensors in order to alert the driver of potential hazards. Many of which are installed on the upper, inner surface of the windshield or attached on the headliner, which means that they will need to be recalibrated following a windshield replacement. If these systems are calibrated properly, they will not work properly and give inaccurate information to the driver.

What is ADAS Recalibration?

Once a windshield is repaired or replaced, the ADAS cameras and sensors will be reinstalled and recalibrated.

Static Recalibration – Static recalibration requires a target to be mounted in front of the vehicle to assist with the recalibration process and takes roughly 45-minutes.

Dynamic Recalibration – The vehicle is driven for roughly 30-minutes to one hour at a specific speed to reclibrate the systems.

Depending on the make and model of your vehicle, both types of recalibration might be necessary.

7 Safe Driving Tips

Whether you’re driving alone or with passengers, safe driving should always be your number one concern. With more distractions than ever, practicing safe driving every time you’re on the road will keep everyone safe. Safe driving will also save you money, so what are you waiting for?

Be Mindful of Blind Spots

They’re called that for a reason! Visibility is the key to safe driving and unfortunately, all cars have blind spots, especially large vehicles. To help avoid collisions due to blind spots, minimize lane changing, check your side mirrors, and familiarize yourself with the blind spots of your vehicle.

Understand the Safe Braking Distance

Depending on the size of your vehicle and how fast you’re driving, the safe braking distance will vary. As a rule of thumb, the following equation will help you figure out your safe braking distance:

Thinking Distance + Braking Distance = Stopping Distance

Here are some averages:

  • 20 MPH: 40 feet
  • 30 MPH: 75 feet
  • 40 MPH: 118 feet
  • 50 MPH: 174 feet
  • 60 MPH: 240 feet
  • 70 MPH: 315 feet

Avoid Distracted Driving

The leading cause of road collisions is distracted driving. Avoid texting, smoking, using your mobile phone, and be well aware of the area around your vehicle at all times.

Stay Away from Tailgaters

Staying away from aggressive drivers is one of the main ways you can ensure safe driving. If you’re experiencing someone tailgating you (driving too close to your bumper), let them overtake you instead of accelerating to make them happy. If possible move over to a different lane or pull to the side of the road and let them pass. When you’re moving out of the way, don’t forget to use your blinker!

Follow the Road Signs

Road signs are there for a reason so it’s important to follow them. Whether it’s a speed limit, no passing zone, or a stop sign, these rules were put in place to keep you and the other drivers around you safe.

How to Prevent your Side Mirror from Getting Damaged

Breaking your side mirrors is a silly and rare mistake that drivers might make once or twice in their lifetimes. There are a few basic ways that side mirror damage can happen. Follow these tips to avoid it happening to you:

  • Tuck in your mirrors when going through a car wash. Some older car washes require you to fold in your side windows. If you don’t, they can get damaged.
  • Pulling into a very tight space is a no brainer. Don’t force your way into a parking space if you want to protect your side windows.
  • Parking on a busy street in a city or heavily populated suburban area without closing your side mirrors is a good way to get winged by reckless drivers.
  • Don’t use abrasive cleaners that use ammonia or alcohol when you clean the glass of your windows. Use a microfiber towel that will not scratch the glass.
  • Don’t overuse your power windows. Letting your kids play with the power windows can cause unnecessary wear and tear to the sensitive electronics controlling the power windows.

Breaking your side mirrors is a mistake that can easily be avoided with careful driving.

 

Contact Windshield Centers online or at (800) 900-1505 to schedule windshield repair or replacement services today.

7 Items to Always Keep in Your Car

Car-related issues and every day emergencies come in when you’re least expecting them to and being prepared will make the biggest difference when they come up. To help diagnose any issues, get back on the road faster, and to help those small cuts and bruises heal faster, here are seven items you should always keep in your car.

Jumper Cables – Batteries die and sometimes, you aren’t close to anywhere to purchase a new one and don’t have time to wait for roadside assistance. Thanks to the jumper cables you keep in your trunk, it’s easy to get to where you need to go so you can get a new battery installed.

Spare Tire – Flats happen and not all cars have run flats! Always make sure you have a spare tire in your trunk and make sure to replace it (or put the spare back in the trunk) after you repair your flat.

First Aid Kit – Whether you have a really bad blister or your child has fallen and hit their head at the playground, having a well-stocked first aid kit at your finger tips will help clean up small injuries.

Tire Pressure Gauge – Usually very small in size, throw a tire pressure gauge in your glove compartment. When your tires look low, measure them quick and you’ll know just how much air to put back in them to avoid any issues.

Blanket – Blankets always come in hand. Whether your battery dies on a cold night and you need to stay warm while waiting for roadside assistance, you have a spur-of-the-moment picnic, or just need to prevent messes in your backseat when traveling with kids, you’ll never regret throwing an extra blanket in the trunk.

Jack and Lug Wrench – What’s the point of having a spare tire in your car if you don’t have the tools to replace a flat tire? A jack and lug wrench take up a very small amount of space and will make changing a flat tire much easier!

A Durable Multi-Tool – A durable multi-tool will have all of the tools you need in case of an emergency, or even if your child just wants to open their new toy before getting home!

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.

First Steps

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.

Protecting Against the Elements

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 areas. 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.

Improve the Security of Your Car Windows

It’s often considered sage advice to keep all valuables out of your vehicle, or at least hidden from view. If you keep these items on display it is very likely you’re making your vehicle a prime target for theft. You might feel safe when you hear the “beep” of your car lock, but most thieves aren’t going to pick the lock to your door. What they will do, however, is smash your window. That’s why we’re here to tell you about a few ways you can improve the security of your car.

1.) Install a Window Security Film

The way window films are installed is similar to how window tinting is done. However, a security window film reinforces and protects the window. These security films are specifically designed to thwart thieves when they attempt to smash your windows. Even with security film installed, your window can still break but it won’t shatter. The film keeps the broken window in place, which forces the thief to flee due to the fact they already attempted a break in and failed.

2.) Tint Your Windows

Drivers typically install window tint because it looks nice and also protects the interior of their vehicle, but it also provides a level of privacy. With tinted windows, it can be difficult to peer into a car and see what’s in there. Most car thefts occur because thieves can see right into a vehicle and know what valuables are stored there. Anything from a stereo system to a purse is fair game, which is why adding window tint is beneficial because it makes it much more difficult for potential thieves to glance inside of your car.

3.) Roll Up Your Windows, Always

When the weather is hot it can be awfully tempting to leave your window opened just a crack, but know that this also makes it easier for crooks to break your window. Car windows are typically quite resilient, since they have to be able to withstand daily driving and potential collisions. If your window is opened just a bit, it gives thieves the right amount of leverage they need to smash through it. Also, if you leave your window cracked open it provides ample opportunity for crooks to open the door by jimmying the lock inside the car. As you walk away from your car, be sure to check and make sure all of your windows are completely closed.

There is only so much you can do prevent thieves from stealing your valuables, but these tips can help save the valuables in your car from unwanted hands. For all of your auto glass needs, come on down to Wisconsin Windshield Centers. Call us at (262) 832-1160, or fill out our online contact form!

How Does Heat Affect Auto Glass

Have you noticed any cracks or minor chips in your windshield? If left untreated, a minor crack in your windshield can lead to major windshield problems in the future. Most people believe that the integrity of their vehicle’s windshield can be compromised due to flying debris on the road or improper windshield installation, but in fact, the biggest threat to their windshield is temperature change.

Warm Weather Equals Stress

As we transition from the cold winter months to the warmer months of spring, any damage to your windshield that seemed minor can increase in severity due to the change of temperature within the cabin of your vehicle. As the temperature within the cabin increases, so does the stress that is put on your windshield.

How does it work?

Essentially, your windshield is made of two pieces of glass with a layer of vinyl in between both layers. Most cracks or minor chips will only affect the first layer of glass and does not reach to the second layer, but if stress is added to the windshield due to an increased temperature the small cracks in the glass can spread and grow in size. The same effect can be applied to the use of your vehicle’s air conditioning unit. The cold air from the air conditioner will lower the temperature inside the cabin of the car but can put stress on the windshield due to the heat coming from outside of the car.

Solutions

If you notice any cracks in the windshield, we recommend that you have the windshield professionally replaced immediately. Replacing your windshield early on in the spring will help you avoid any serious damage that can occur due to the change in temperature. If however, you are not able to replace your windshield for whatever reason here are some simple solutions that you can apply that can save your windshield from any added stress.

  • Do not immediately turn on your air conditioning unit when entering your vehicle.
  • When parking your vehicle, find a shaded parking space to park your vehicle.
  • Avoid slamming your car door when entering and exiting your vehicle.
  • Gradually increase and decrease the temperature from within the car.

 

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

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!

3 Methods of Windshield Repair

When you’re out driving on the road, rocks and other debris can easily cause damage to your windshield. You could be casually driving along when BAM, a rock hits your windshield at the perfect trajectory. As you go through the motions of scheduling an appointment for auto glass repair, you may find yourself wondering about how a windshield is repaired in the first place. We’re here to explain three common windshield repair methods.

1.) Replacing the Windshield

Sometimes there are chips and cracks that go beyond simple patch jobs. If a windshield chip is larger than a quarter, it likely cannot be filled. Also, if the crack is larger than a dollar bill, repair isn’t an option. In situations like that, the entire windshield would have to be replaced. Replacing a windshield involves taking out the old windshield and putting in a completely new piece of glass. This process is best left to a professional, and should not be performed on your own.

2.) Windshield Patch

If you’re in need of a windshield patch, you can usually purchase a do-it-yourself repair kit. After acquiring the kit, apply the patch over the damaged portion of the windshield, and smooth out the patch to allow it to work. The patch will harden, which helps strengthen the damaged area. The patch will not strengthen the glass itself, but it will hold the area together to prevent future cracking.

3.) Windshield Resin

This method is used most often by professionals for repairing cracks and chips. The way it works is that resin is injected into the crack or chip, and then a heat source is utilized to harden the resin. As it hardens, the resin expands and works to fill the damage. The resin helps prevent the current windshield damage from spreading, and also helps strengthen the area.

For all of your windshield repair needs, contact the professionals at Windshield Centers! Call us at (800)-900-1505, or fill out our online contact form!