How Much Does it Cost to Replace a Windshield?


windshield replacement and installation

It’s a simple question and you want a simple answer: How much will it cost to replace my windshield? The answer, however, depends on more than just your cracked or chipped window. Windshield replacement costs typically include glass, installation, the adhesive and cleaning.

Type of Vehicle

When it comes to windshield replacement, one of the first things every shop you call will ask is, “What’s the make and model of your vehicle?” This detail will have a big impact on the cost. A luxury vehicle, such as Mercedes and Lexus for example, require specific windshields that are often only available through the dealer. These can sometimes cost two or three times what glass for non-luxury vehicles might cost.

Special Features

Windshield replacement may also include additional expenses depending on the type of vehicle. Some vehicles have special moldings that are a part of the windshield. This means the glass will also need those to match the structural design. Also, newer vehicles sometimes come with features such as rain sensors and condensation sensors that involve more work to replace. In fact, some cars can have as many as five different sensors and cost several hundreds of dollars to replace. Windshield replacement on an older car without those details will be considerably less.

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Rear Windshield Replacement 

Replacing the front windshield may be most common, sometimes the rear windshield (also called the backlite) may also be damaged. Like with the front windshield, costs vary based on factors such as the type of the vehicle, type of glass, and severity of the damage.

So, What Does a Windshield Replacement Actually Cost?

The cost of a windshield replacement will be different from one customer to the next. According to some resources, average windshield replacement for typical, non-luxury vehicles, is often in the range of $150-$400. Luxury vehicles, on the other hand, can cost over $1,000 to have their windshield replaced.

Where to Begin?

If your vehicle is in need of a windshield replacement, glass.com can help. You can easily search by zip code for companies near you. Keep in mind, though, depending on the damage, repairing rather than replacing your windshield may also be an option. Glass.com can also guide your repair needs as well.

When Does Insurance Cover Windshield Repair?

car-windshield-smashed

If you drive a car, sooner or later, it’s bound to happen – your windshield is going to get chipped or cracked by a rock flung from the semi on the highway, maybe a foul ball at a Little League game, or a hail storm, or any number of ways. Or, you may be unlucky enough to have the entire windshield smashed and need to have it replaced. Knowing when to repair or replace the windshield is not always so obvious. Knowing if – and when – your insurance pays for windshield repair and replacement could save you hundreds of dollars.

Am I covered?

First of all, many insurance companies cover windshield repair at 100 percent with no deductible, especially if you have comprehensive coverage. Insurers all have different rules for how long a crack can be to be covered for repair. Some insurers, though, such as State Farm, generally do not cover repairs. That’s the easy part. Just remember, comprehensive coverage is optional, so make sure you have it before making any decisions. Comprehensive coverage usually covers damage incurred from storms, fires, vandalism, animal collisions, etc. Repair (rather than replacement) is more common when it comes to auto glass. That’s because the majority of damage is in the form of chips or cracks. So, if your glass is chipped or cracked, check to see if the damage is less than 6 inches. You can use the “dollar bill rule” for this – if the crack is completely covered by a dollar bill, then it’s less than 6 inches. If so, your next step is to call your insurance company and file a claim. You may also do this online.

Check your deductible

Before filing a claim, be sure to compare the cost of the repair to your deductible. If the repair cost is lower than your deductible (if you have one for windshield repair), then your insurance carrier likely will not pay for the repair. But if the cost is higher than your deductible, and you decide to file the claim, now is the time to do so. Your insurance company will tell you whether the repair is covered.

Get it fixed

Once you’ve taken these steps, it’s time to get the windshield repaired. Most times, the insurance company will put you in contact with a repair shop; . In either case, once the work is complete, submit your receipts for reimbursement. Be sure to include your name and policy number at a minimum.

Resources

If it’s all new to you, these can be good resources for information:

, a private site not affiliated with any state Department of Motor Vehicles.

, the windshield repair industry’s statement of best practices as compiled under ANSI guidelines.

, the Auto Glass Repair Safety Standard. More information can be found at the website for the Auto Glass Safety Council, a not-for-profit organization dedicated to the safe replacement of auto glass. Auto Glass Safety Council was founded and is supported by companies in the auto glass replacement industry that keep safe installation as their primary goal.

Things to Consider When Paying for Your Windshield Out of Pocket

out-of-pocket-windshield-replacement

For many, replacing a windshield will cost less than your insurance deductible, meaning you will pay cash. Or perhaps you just prefer not to make a claim on your insurance policy and pay yourself. So how do you handle out of pocket windshield replacement?

While it may be tempting to shop around for the lowest price and go with that windshield replacement company, this may not be the wisest choice.

The Cheapest Option Isn’t Always the Best

Your windshield is an important safety component for your vehicle. As a structural part of your vehicle, it helps to support your car’s roof and can also ensure you aren’t thrown from the vehicle in the event of a crash. So you must ask yourself, is the cheapest replacement option reasonably the safest?

The cost of a windshield replacement can vary. While the price of the windshield and cost of supplies are all factored into the cost of your replacement, another big thing to consider is the technician’s expertise and training.

The Value of Training

One way to find an experienced installer is by asking the automotive glass replacement company if they are a member of the Auto Glass Safety Council.

The AGSC provides a standard for auto glass retailers to follow to make sure all precautions are taken to ensure driver and passenger safety. Glass.com®, for example, shows this badge near registered member companies.

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