New Windshield Breaks (Again) After Installation


The Case of the Windshield that Keeps Cracking

Question:

Hello Glass Detective,

My windshield was replaced through an insurance claim on Thursday. I noticed yesterday (the following Tuesday) there is a crack at the same spot as the old one- right behind the rear view mirror. I’m afraid the company that handled the replacement will claim it is not an installation or manufacturer defect because there is a chip along the crack. Is it possible the crack caused the chip? Should I have been asked if I wanted OEM glass? I feel as though, after having cars for 20 years and never needing a windshield, and then suddenly needing one right after it was replaced, the glass they are using is inferior.

Thank you.

Nicole
Wilmington, DE

Answer:

Nicole,

Thank you for making contact with the Glass Detective regarding your windshield problem. Specifically, after your windshield was replaced, you found the new windshield was broken again in the same place that it was broken before. The time-lapse between the time the original windshield was replaced and the replacement windshield was found broken was approximately five days. You ask excellent questions regarding all of this and I will do my best to answer them. Although, not having seen the exact break of the first or second windshield puts me at a bit of a disadvantage.

First, it is very possible that the two breaks were not related in any way other than that it was the same windshield that was broken (twice). I have been involved in situations where this has occurred. One was a vandalism situation and the other was assumed to just have been a naturally occurring event (fate if you will).

Secondly, chips in windshields often become cracks if they are not fixed. Your comments tend to make me think the crack came first. Additionally, I want to be very clear in saying that the installation and the glass used may have been absolutely fine. It may just have been “one of those things” that sometimes happens.

windshield-crack-spread

As for your question about OEM glass, either an OEM or aftermarket product could have been used. If aftermarket glass, there is nothing indicating the quality of the glass. OEM glass is preferable.

I don’t know who performed your windshield replacement although I am going to hope it was an Auto Glass Safety Council™ (AGSC) member because the members of the AGSC use certified (trained and tested) technicians who use and support proper installation procedures and techniques.

In conclusion, my recommendation is that you make contact with the company that replaced the windshield and discuss your questions and concerns with them while asking them to inspect the windshield to see if they have any ideas as to how the replacement windshield broke. I am going to hope that you and the company involved can reach some conclusions together and work out an acceptable arrangement for yet another windshield.

Thank you again for contacting the Glass.com Glass Detective with your questions and I hope this information is of some value to you.

The Glass Detective attempts to answer all questions accurately but cannot be held liable for any information provided or omitted.  You should always work with a licensed, insured and reputable glass shop that can assess your specific needs and local building codes and offer professional services. Never attempt to cut, install, or otherwise work with glass yourself. The Glass Detective answers questions on an informational basis only.

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Lyle Hill

By Lyle Hill

Lyle Hill has been in the glass and metal industry for more than 40 years. In this time he has managed glass retail, contract glazing, mirror, architectural window, window film, and automotive glass businesses throughout America. He obtained an MBA from IIT with a focus on Technology and Engineering Management.

Hill is also a columnist for glass industry trade magazines and often called the “face” of the glass industry. He has also authored books including “The Broken Tomato and Other Business Parables,” which is available through Amazon.


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