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Q: Is My Car’s Cracked Windshield Safe?

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Is my car’s cracked windshield safe?

A: Your car's windshield is a part of the ...

Your car's windshield is a part of the structural support system for the roof of your car. The windshield also provides additional strength to the safety cell that is the passenger compartment. Windshields that are intact provide more rollover protection than windshields that are cracked.

Once a windshield becomes cracked, it’s only a matter of time before the crack grows and weakens the windshield further. Constant temperature changes (cold to hot to cold) is responsible for the continued growth of cracks in windshields. Chips in windshields can be addressed, but cracked windshields will have to be replaced at some point in the near future.

The laws of many states make allowances for cracks in windshields, as long as the crack touches only one edge of the glass. If you have a windshield where the crack touches two separate edges of the glass, it must be replaced. This is a major safety issue. Windshields that are cracked in this manner provide no structural rigidity at all to the roof. The entire safety cell of your vehicle has been compromised to an unsafe degree.

To have your windshield replaced, you should contact an automotive glass repair shop that is trained to do the job safely and correctly, that have the proper tools and the correct glass for your vehicle. However, if you want a proper second opinion for any window concerns, have a certified mechanic inspect them for you.

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