High-tech windshield developments are around the corner

When people think of cutting edge tech in the auto industry, the windshield is not what comes to mind first. Usually the only time when drivers even notice their windshield is when there’s either a crack or chip somewhere in view (always a good idea to get that fixed ASAP). Little do most know, the windshield has seen some crazy tech advances over the past 100 or so years and has some science fiction-esk changes coming in the immediate future.

Believe it or not, back in the early 1900’s windshields were not even considered standard, they were a luxury! Originally windshields were made of normal glass that you would see on a house or building; however this was not the safest choice as it would shatter on impact sending shards of dangerous projectiles into the cabin of a vehicle, ouch. It wasn’t until around 1904 that a French chemist found that glass covered with a dried resin film would keep its shape and not shatter upon impact. This started the windshield revolution and in 1915 Oldsmobile was the first company to not only make windshields standard but use tempered glass, which is much more like the windshield we know today.

Over the years the windshield has grown much stronger overall but hasn’t really seen any revolutionary tech or features added. In upcoming years this should all change, with additions such as self-cleaning and water repelling windshields to “heads up” displays that allow for drivers to have an abundance of information projected onto the windshield there are just a few of the exciting new developments on the horizon. These high-tech windshields can display things such as speed and navigation information so drivers won’t have to take their eyes off the road. Other displays such as pedestrian detection and weather/traffic updates will aid the driver as well, creating a safer experience for the driver and others on the road.

Other notable developments in windshield tech are optimizing them to be the lightest and strongest possible. Corning Inc. is developing a windshield that actually uses Gorilla Glass, a lightweight high-strength material that is found in smartphone screens. The benefits of having stronger windshields are obvious (better durability, less scratch/chip prone, better rollover protection) but why would you want a lighter one? The answer is simple, better fuel economy (lighter weight of the vehicle makes for better gas mileage). With fuel economy standards the strictest they’ve ever been, companies have been trying to slim down on just about every part of the vehicle, windshields not excluded.

Even though there are some exciting advances in windshield technology coming up, it’s still important to take care of the one you have! That means addressing any cracks, chips, or defects as soon as possible to ensure your safety and increase the life of your windshield. For the best windshield repair and replacement in the Buffalo and Rochester area, look no further than Windshield Centers. We have expert glass technicians and provide convenience so you can get in and get out with the peace of mind your windshield will protect you. Call us at 800 900-1505 to request a quote or schedule your next appointment today!

Preparing your Vehicle for Winter

Winter is just a few weeks away and we’re already anticipating the snowstorms we’re accustomed to in Western New York. Winters can be devastating to your vehicle and your safety while driving if you don’t prepare well enough.

Here are a few ways to get ready for winter:

  • Use winter windshield wiper fluid. Not many drivers are aware but windshield wiper fluid for summer is very different from the fluids used for winter. This fluid won’t freeze and will help keep your windshield clear of ice and snow.
  • Do a coolant and antifreeze check. This is a must before the winter starts. It’s in the name. Antifreeze will keep you and your car from freezing this winter.
  • Check tire pressure or switch to winter tires. At the minimum you must check your tire pressure before December rolls around but if you’ve been living in the Northeast for long enough you know that winter tires are the way to go if you want to stay safe on the road this winter.

Windshield Centers provides windshield replacement and repair services in Rochester and Buffalo, NY. Contact us online or at (877) 599-5196 to schedule windshield repair or replacement services today.

Halloween Driving Safety Tips

Halloween is right around the corner! Trick-or-treating is an exciting and fun activity for kids but with everyone running around the streets at night, Halloween can also be one of the most dangerous days for pedestrians all year. However, with safe driving practices, Halloween can be both safe and fun. Follow these driving tips to help keep everyone safe this Halloween:

  • Drive slowly in residential areas and keep any distractions like your phone out of sight.
  • Don’t expect trick-or-treaters to wait for you to pass. Always yield to pedestrians.
  • Turn on your headlights earlier than usual. Even if sunset is still a couple hours away you should flip on your headlights to make yourself more visible.
  • Be careful when passing cars parked on the side of the street. If you are in a neighborhood they are likely dropping off kids to trick-or-treat.
  • Be vigilant about using your turn signals. Many people forgo using their blinker when they’re pulling into their own driveway, but on Halloween you should be using it for every single turn.

Your Mercedes Car Could Be Another Person’s GPS to Locate a Parking Space

Are you often frustrated by how difficult it is to find a parking space for your car in a crowded city district? Did you pass by a vacant spot by mistake because you did not see the space until you went past it? According to a recent study from Apcoa, up to 30 percent of the traffic in cities today are accounted to searching for parking lots. Well, Mercedes-Benz now is aiming to reduce the time and trouble of looking for a parking space by notifying the driver ahead of time using other Mercedes-Benz cars on the road. This is part of a larger project aimed at helping drivers safe time, reduce traffic congestion, and pollution from cars encircling the area looking a space.  

Mercedes and parts supplier, Robert Bosch GmbH are developing a pilot project that will note an empty space a driver has passed by and upload the information to help others that are looking for a parking space in the nearby area. It collects data of parking spaces from a vehicle driving up to a speed of 34 miles per hour.

Here is how it works:

First, the system will calculate the odds of finding a parking spot in the specified street. Then, it will share real time information on the location and size of the spot which will be displayed on the monitor of the car.

Other car-makers are also finding ways to help make parking easier for drivers. BMW’s ParkNow allow drivers to reserve a spot in parking garages in addition to pay for a space on the road. Siemens is using radar installed on street lamp posts to deliver parking locations of the street. So, in the future, don’t be surprised that Mercedes or BMW cars always beat you to the spot when looking for a parking space on the street.

 

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.

3 Crucial Tips on How to Prevent Fatal Heatstroke Car Deaths

As the temperatures continue to rise during the summer, the number of heat stroke accidents also tends to rise. Did you know that there is an average of 38 deaths per year caused by heatstroke inside a car? It can happen to any parent or babysitter. According to research done by San Francisco State University, at an average 70 degrees sunny day, after 30 minutes, the temperature inside a vehicle is 104 degrees. After an hour, it can reach 113 degrees. When the outside temperature range from 80 to 100 degrees, the temperature inside a car parked in direct sunlight can quickly climb to between 130 to 172. As a result, it is extremely crucial to not leave children behind in the vehicle especially in the summer.

Everyone must ACT if a child is left alone in car:

A: Always check the backseat of your vehicle before locking your vehicle. A good tip to do this is to keep a large stuffed animal in the child’s car seat. When the child is placed in the car seat, move the stuffed animal in front passenger seat. It could prove to be the difference as a result.

C: Create a habit of checking the back seat: Put an item or items that you will need before leaving your car, like a purse, cell phone, and wallet. This ensures that you have to open the back door to get the item and would not forget the child in the back seat.

T: Take action immediately if you see a child is left behind in a vehicle. Dial 9-1-1 to get immediate help. If the child is in a suffocating condition, get them out as quickly as possible by breaking the car window.

Caring for Your Auto Glass

Every good car owner knows how to take care of the basic components of their vehicle to keep it running well. Changing your oil, rotating and changing your tires, and regular check-ups are all basic things that will keep your vehicle running well. For auto glass, there is not quite as much you can do for general maintenance. If you have your windshield replaced by a professional auto glass company like Windshield Centers, you do not have much to worry about. Our auto glass technicians will install your windshield or auto glass so that it will stay secure and safe.

For auto glass care, the most important thing you can do is regularly check your windshield for cracks or chips. Small chips can easily go unnoticed when they occur. If you miss a small chip in your windshield, it could only take a few weeks or months for that tiny chip to spread into a large crack that could require a full windshield replacement. If you are able to catch those small chips before they spread, you can potentially save yourself money by getting your windshield repaired instead of replaced.

To request a quote for windshield replacement , please visit our quote form page or give us a call at 800-900-1505.

How to Clean your Headlights

The plastic of our headlights eventually gets dirty and corrodes over time, leaving a cloudy plastic that does not let enough light through. And with something as important as keeping up your visibility on the road, you don’t want to ignore this issue. Keep your headlights clean using a few simple tips.

Use a glass cleaner or soap to wipe down the headlights. Then dry down the headlights completely and tape all around the headlights, with the tape on the paint of the car. Using simple electrical tape here will work.

Once the paint is completely covered, take sandpaper to the entire surface of the headlights. If the tape is laid down correctly, you should be able to really take the sandpaper to the headlight without doing any damage. Use your elbow grease here and completely clean those headlights until you see a noticeable difference. The yellowish grime should be removed.

Next use a nice polish to clean up the scratches from the sandpaper. Use a UV sealant on the headlights next. You need to restore the UV protection that was partially removed in the sandpapering process.

You don’t want to take any risks with your nighttime driving vision. That is why you should keep your headlights as clean as possible at all times.

5 Quick Tips for Keeping your Car Clean this Summer

  • Have access to a compressed air machine? Start with that when you’re cleaning your carpet. Many modern cars have thick and curly carpets. Use a compressed air machine to blow out the dirt and crumbs baked into the carpeting. If you don’t have a compressed air machine, take a stiff brush to the carpet and use some elbow grease to clean out the junk.
  • Clean your tires with a non-acid solution to prevent accidentally taking off any paint or coating.
  • Give the body of the car a hand wash; allow yourself the time to get detailed with the cleaning and get all the nooks and crannies of the vehicle. Nice long and broad strokes will leave the car with no noticeable streaks, leaving only a fully washed and shining body.
  • Polish and wax the outside of the car to both smooth out and protect the paint. Polishing will make sure the paint is smooth, and a follow up wax will help protect it against the elements going forward.
  • Brush the interior of your car with a vacuum on hand, that way you will suck away the dust before it floats off into the rest of the car. A small brush is helpful for lifting dust off of the small knobs and vents in your car.

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.

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.