Anyone who’s ever discovered a chip in their windscreen or heard that sudden sound of something hitting the glass will know that sinking feeling of ‘oh no, please don’t let the damage be serious!’
The truth is – any damage to your car’s windscreen can be serious, even if it is just a tiny chip and it’s always best to have it checked out by professionals. You need to make sure that there’s no structural damage and have the glass repaired (or in some cases, replaced) so that there’s no compromise to your safety or comfort.
In most instances, the damage is caused by flying debris like a small stone kicked up by another moving vehicle. But did you know that there are actually several other causes of windscreen damage and although most are unavoidable, it’s helpful to know what to look out for.
Here are the top 5 causes of windscreen damage:
- Damage from stones or other flying debris
The most common cause of windscreen damage is flying debris. This can happen when a piece of loose material is dislodged from a truck driving in front of you which is carrying a load such as aggregate or building sand. It can also happen when a vehicle travelling in front of you, overtaking you or even driving in the opposite direction flicks up a stone or rock. Driving on gravel or unsealed country roads increases the likelihood of this happening, but chips or cracks can happen even when driving on high quality surfaces.
You’ll probably hear the sound of the impact (followed by that sinking feeling) and it’s important to stop when it’s safe to do so, and inspect for any damage.
- Extreme temperature fluctuations
Even though the glass in your windscreen is specially designed to withstand tough conditions, the reality is that glass expands and contracts in extreme temperatures. Repeated exposure to very hot and very cold conditions may weaken your autoglass over time, so it’s best to keep your car under cover and protected whenever possible.
If you’ve been the unfortunate victim of theft or attempted theft from your vehicle, it’s crucial to check that your windscreen wasn’t damaged or tampered with. Some thieves (mistakenly) believe that windscreen glass is a weak spot in a vehicle and may either go in hard and break the whole thing or try to discreetly try to pry it open. Either way, criminal activity can result in a damaged windscreen so check it on a regular basis to make sure everything is in order.
- Sudden temperature changes
Putting hot water onto frozen glass is a mistake that someone generally only makes once – because the outcome isn’t usually a good one! Glass expands and contracts in extreme temperatures and that’s why it’s NOT a good idea to clear your car’s windscreen of frost or snow by throwing a bucket of boiling water over it – it can result in cracking.
- Storms and extreme weather conditions
Extreme weather conditions such as storms or high winds can damage your windscreen. Large hailstones or falling debris from trees can crack, chip or even shatter the glass – so you should try to avoid driving in these conditions and seek cover until things clear up.
As soon as you notice a chip or crack in your windscreen, no matter how small, you should have it checked out by the professionals. A damaged windscreen can compromise the safety and performance of the vehicle and given that in most cases, it is possible to repair the damage quickly and effectively without necessitating a full windscreen replacement, it’s worth taking action quickly.
Autoscreens is a leader in mobile windscreen repairs and replacements in Perth and with over 20 years’ experience, they are able to guarantee that the job will be done to the highest quality standards, affordably and efficiently.