If you're not intimately familiar with what separates the inside of your car from the outside world, you're not alone. There seem to be a number of falsehoods floating about regarding windshields. If yours is in need of attention, and you don't know what's true and what's false, here are the four most common myths about windshields debunked.
Myth #1. All windshield glass is the same.
If it's time to put a new windshield in your car, you may think you should just go with whatever is cheapest. Aren't they all the same?
Windshields are either OEM (Original Equipment Manufacturer) or aftermarket glass. OEM glass is made to replicate the original windshield that was installed in your car. It should be the same size, color, and thickness.
Aftermarket glass is made by a separate company, and they are not required to adhere to any of the manufacturer's guidelines when making windshields. Thickness and color of the glass may vary, and this type of windshield is typically cheaper than OEM.
If your insurance is paying for the replacement, they will often dictate what kind you get. So if you want something that's considered a higher quality, you might have to pay out of pocket.
Myth #2. Old windshield wipers can't damage the glass.
If your windshield wipers are old, chances are you're aware. You may notice squeaking and streaking when it rains, and a lot of drivers put off replacing them when this happens. But leaving on old, worn-out wiper blades can damage the glass.
When the rubber wears down to the metal, or it dry rots to the point that it breaks or bends, forcing metal against glass, it can scratch the surface, leaving hairline marks that affect your visibility, not just in the rain but in bright sunlight, too.
If your windshield wipers don't perform like they used to, it's important to repair them right away.
Myth #3. Cracks in a windshield don't matter as long as you can still see.
If you have a small crack in your windshield, you may not think it should be repaired or replaced, particularly if it's in a section that isn't affecting your visibility. But cracks should always be addressed for several reasons.
First, a crack will almost always spread, so even if it doesn't affect your ability to see now, it probably will eventually. Second, most states require cracked windshields to be repaired or you could get a ticket. Be sure to check the laws in your state.
Myth #4. Damaged windshields always need to be replaced.
Just because your windshield is damaged doesn't mean it should be replaced. Location is sometimes a determining factor, and small cracks and chips can often be repaired by a professional. Some companies have been known to repair 12-inch cracks, so don't assume that damage always equates to a replacement bill.
For more information about repairing or replacing your windshield, contact a local repair company like Central Glass Company.