Your Windscreen Is Cracked, What Now?
A stone has just gone through your windscreen. Do you just need to repair it, or do you need to replace the whole windscreen?
Published: Tuesday, March 21st 2017
There is nothing more infuriating and disheartening than the sound of a stone hitting your windscreen. Sometimes, even the smallest crack can spread like wildfire over the glass and, often, just a small crack is left. When should you take your car in to have it repaired, and will this be covered with your insurance provider? We take a look at the answers here.
The first bit of advice that we can provide is that you should act immediately. Any form of crack in your windscreen can lead to a bigger problem. You might not know, but your windscreen provides 30% of your car’s structural strength. A small imperfection can, therefore, impact the overall integrity of the car. Should you be involved in an accident, while there is a problem with the windscreen, you might find yourself at a higher risk of injury. The overall safety of the car is severely impeded with even the most minor of cracks.
Should your car be fitted with an airbag, the windscreen usually acts as a support surface in order to make sure that the airbag is properly positioned. A windscreen that is not fitted properly may pop out if the airbag inflates. This will render both windscreen and airbag useless if you are involved in an accident.
Know If It Is A Chip Or A Crack
Windscreens are split into zones ranging from A to D. This is for assessment purposes for the overall MOT roadworthiness test.
The rule of thumb is to get a chip repaired, whereas a crack can mean the replacement of the full windscreen. Due to the ability of a crack to spread quickly and easily, you could soon find that a small crack has torn a line through the entire windscreen.
The A zone is centered around the steering wheel. Damage of up to 10mm here can be repaired. Anything above this and it is highly advisable to get your windscreen replaced. This is the most vulnerable zone in the windscreen and protects you directly. Make sure to keep a look out here for any form of imperfection.
Check With Your Insurer
As soon as the damage takes place, haul out your papers, or call into your insurer and find out whether your windscreen is covered. Many insurers do not consider windscreen repairs as claims and it will, therefore, not affect your claim history. This, however, does depend on the provider as well as the scheme that you are on. MiWay is an example of a company that will not add a windscreen repair to your claim history. Budget Insurance, on the other hand, requires you to add the windscreen cover to your policy.
We recommend that you check with your insurer who their service providers are. You do not want to arrive at a repair shop, only to find out that they are not affiliated with your insurer. You will end up paying for the repair, or replacement, out of your own pocket. Should you need the insurer to cover the repair, call them first and submit your claim. In many cases, they will be able to make the appointment for you with the shop.