What is a windscreen chip? and why should repair it?
A Windscreen usually gets chipped or cracked by an impact from a stone or other debris hitting the windscreen while the vehicle is being driven.
This can be a problem as the Windscreen Chip could turn into a crack at any time, and could cause a safety risk if it happens while your driving.
Further the passenger airbag relies on support from the windscreen if deployed and is responsible for 30% of the cars structural integrity.
Types of Windscreen Chips
Windscreen chips can take up several forms such as:
‘Bulls eye’ – a circular indentation,
‘Star break’ – small cracks radiating out in all directions,
Other combinations of the above with names such as, ‘cloverleaf’, ‘beeswing’, ‘half moon’
What factors increase the risk of windscreen chips and cracks?
As Windscreen sizes increases so does the risk of chips due to the larger surface area.
More ‘complex’ windscreens may have certain stress points that if struck can cause chips and cracks.
A car on a ‘loose’ or busy road is more susceptible to get struck by debris that may cause damage.
Speed and number of miles driven also can contribute to the amount of damage that may occur if your windscreen is struck by debris.
Also further shock, vibration, extremes of temperature (such as turning the air-conditioning on full on a scorching hot day), driving time or factors such as frost, dirt and moisture getting inside a chip can all contribute in to making the windscreen chip in to a crack.
Glass has no inherent strength and therefore no ability to resist outside factors. Once a chip or crack appears, external stressors, such as heat, vibration or movement are likely to cause it to expand.
A chip in a windscreen may cause damage to the rubber of the vehicle’s windscreen wiper blades if left unrepaired.
It may result in your car failing your MOT. There are clear rules about what must be repaired in different parts of your windscreen, particularly the part that is swept by your windscreen wipers.
- Damage larger than 10mm will fail in the drivers line of vision. Marked Zone “A” above
- Damage larger than 40mm will fail in the rest of the swept area Marked Zone “B” above.
- Significant scratching that impairs the drivers vision
- If a chip is in the drivers line of vision, it only has to be bigger than 10mm for your windscreen to fail its MOT.
- The MOT testers manual says “any damage not contained within a circle of 10mm” so a cluster of minor damage could also fail
- (Statistics accredited to Glass Doctors)
What can I do?
There are a number of DIY kits about, however usually if you have fully comprehensive insurance, this is covered and normally you do not have to pay any ‘waive’ fee or lose your no claim bonus. But make sure with your insurance company!
Or feel free to have a look though our emerging Windscreen Repair Services