Driving with a cracked windshield can be dangerous. There are numerous safety concerns with cracked windshields. Most important safety issue relates to reduced visibility of the road.
This is why windshield cracks or chips should never be directly in front of the driver. They can impair your clear vision of the road ahead, and police officers will happily cite you for windshield damage.
To avoid traffic tickets but also ensure you drive safely, you should always repair or replace your windshield. Repairs will take less than 30 minutes on average for small cracks or chips, and will ensure your windshield is safe to drive with.
Repairing windshield immediately after damage occurs is the best course of action, but not always convenient. If you’re unable to immediately repair your cracked windshield it’s important to take a few preventive measures to ensure the damage does not spread. Here’s a few simple ways to stop window cracks from spreading.
Keep dirt and water out
First thing you should do is prevent dirt or water from entering the crack. These can frequently cause additional damage and cause cracks to spread.
You can apply simple clear tape on the crack to prevent most dirt or water from entering. This, of course, is just a temporary solution until your windshield can be properly repaired.
During winter your window crack will spread more quickly. If water or moisture enters these cracks it can freeze. Since ice expands when frozen, this can easily enlarge cracks in your windows and cause additional damage.
Use super glue
This is only recommended until your windshield can be replaced. Using super glue will make a windshield repair job more difficult and possibly more expensive, but this is a cheap and quick way to ensure larger cracks don’t expand.
Any cheap super glue applied to windshield cracks will ensure the glass holds together. Super glue can buy you some time and ensure your vehicle is safer to drive in case you’re unable to repair or replace your windscreen immediately.
Keep in mind, this is not a long-term solution, and you can and probably will receive a traffic ticket if stopped by law enforcement. “Repairs” done with super glue will likely be very visible.
Buy a DIY repair kit
Most auto part stores should have windshield repair kits in stock. They cost about $10, and can often do a remarkable job with small cracks.
If your windshield cracks are directly in front of the driver you should visit a professional glass repair shop as soon as possible. It is illegal to drive with obstructed view of the road in most U.S. states.
Avoid extreme weather conditions
Heat, rain, snow or freeze can all easily make cracks and chips expand further. Make sure you park in the shade, and apply any of the above methods to keep water from entering the crack.
Your glass will expand and contract depending on temperature differences, and this can easily further damage your windshield and make cracks larger. Also try to avoid any sudden temperature changes.
Driving over potholes, especially at high speeds, can put significant strain on your windshield. Damaged windshield is not as strong as an undamaged one and there are multiple safety concerns when driving with one.
You can prevent windshield damage from getting worse by driving more slowly and avoiding any potholes and road bumps.
These few tips should help you keep your damaged windshield cracks from spreading. Small chips and most cracks less than 6 inches in length can easily be repaired. It is advisable to use some of these tricks to avoid further damage before you can visit a professional window repair shop.
These are all just temporary measures to stop windshield cracks from spreading, and it’s always important to consult professionals and repair your windshield as soon as possible.