Should I Replace My Windshield Before Selling My Car?

Helping Others is the Family Business

Helping people is something Kevin’s family has done for years – through his own towing company rescuing stranded drivers and his work with this local community. So it was no surprise to Kevin when one of his drivers, Scott, went above and beyond when he witnessed a horrific accident.

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Replacing a windshield: Next steps

Budgeting for car maintenance isn’t easy, but your windshield is a crucial safety component in your car. If you notice a chip or crack, consider calling for estimates immediately. You may pay less for minor damage, whereas waiting can increase your bill by hundreds of dollars.

Step 1: Purchase a Replacement Windshield

If you check online, there are sites that sell replacement windshields. Be wary and skeptical before forking over your credit card number it might be the wisest option to just call. That will also be helpful when it comes to price, because if you have a live human being on the phone, there’s a good chance you can haggle on the cost. If you do not like any of the prices online, another option is to try to find a second-hand windshield. While not as commonplace as side windows, there are still whole windshields out there, if you know where to look. Try salvage yards first. If that yields nothing, try looking around on Craigslist in the auto parts section (or post your own ad saying that you’re looking for one – it’s free and easy).

Can I Replace My Windshield Myself?

If you’re trying to save money, you may be tempted to experiment with a home adhesive kit; however, this is not an advisable course of action. A home adhesive kit may sound great, but if applied incorrectly, it can lead to leaks in your windshield and further repairs, which will cost you more money in the long run. There are also several different types of adhesives and each one must set for a certain amount of time before it is safe for you to drive your car again.

Of course, a low-quality installation by an unreliable repair shop can result in the windshield separating from your car if you were ever to get into an accident. In order to avoid a circumstance like this, choose a reputable company that has certified and insured technicians ready to help you with your windshield replacement.

How to Ensure a Quality Repair

Your windshield is classified as a “safety device” because it provides structural strength to the body of your vehicle and supports inflation and performance of passenger side airbags. This being said, it is vital to ensure a grade A repair is made when having your windshield replaced. The quality and proper installation of the auto glass adhesive is equally as important as the quality of the windshield.

What Affects the Cost of a New Windshield Replacement?

While the price for a new windshield will vary between different car models and providers, there are definite factors that have an influence on the cost. The make, model, and year of your vehicle is one of the things to consider when you start to get estimates. Typically, the cost to replace the windshield on a brand new, luxury car that’s filled to the brim with gizmos and gadgets, like rain sensors, is nearly twice that of an economy vehicle that’s got some years on it. 

You’ll also notice that the type of glass your mechanic uses for the replacement will have a marked difference on the price. This is especially true if you would like to have the original equipment manufacturer (OEM) glass installed. Most OEM parts cost a bit more than aftermarket parts since they were designed by the manufacturer of your car and with the specifications needed to fit your car perfectly.

Of course, you can help yourself save some money by comparing quotes from different providers to ensure that you’re paying the best price for the service you need.

Rear Car Windshield Replacement Near Me?

Rear Windshield Replacement

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

Why the Wide Range of Windshield Costs?

When it comes to auto windshield replacement cost, 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. The main reason for cost differences is quality, features, and availability.

For example, a Honda Civic windshield replacement costs much less than a Mercedes Benz S560. Why? Because the Honda Civic is a basic, small, vehicle with few (if any) windshield-related features and parts are abundant. The Mercedes, on the other hand, is a bit more complicated.

Additionally, luxury vehicles, 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

Your car’s windshield replacement cost will also factor 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.

Today’s vehicle add-on options that are actually tied to the windshield can include:

  • Heated wiper park
  • Rain sensing wipers
  • Lane departure warning
  • Automatic braking
  • Special solar coatings
  • Auto-dimming headlamps
  • Specialized logos
  • Frit/shade screen
  • Bullet resistance
  • Electrochromic rearview mirror
  • Acoustical interlayer
  • And more…

All of these additional features add additional manufacturing processes, which ultimately add an additional cost.

Despite the common belief that “glass is just glass”, (although this may have held some truth in the past) it’s just no longer the case with today’s technologically advanced vehicles.

Windshield Quality

There are 2 quality options to choose from when having your windshield replaced:

Original Equipment Manufacturer (OEM) Quality:

OEM products meet or exceed the quality requirements set forth by vehicle manufacturers. This means that the replacement windshield being installed in your car will be just as good, if not better than the one that your car originally came with from the factory. With OEM parts you can rest assured that it should be a safe windshield that integrates smoothly with your car’s current options and provides all the same features.

Aftermarket Quality:

Aftermarket windshields may or may not meet the quality considerations set forth by OE manufacturers. This is not to say that there is no quality control in place- all legal windshields installed in the USA must meet minimum Department of Transportation (DOT) standards. Windshields must receive a rating of AS1 by the DOT which approves them safe for use. So although they might not be the same quality, they technically meet these standards.

Because of the possible quality discrepancy, however, some vehicle owners have reported incompatibility issues when it comes to Advanced Driver Assistance Systems (ADAS)- features like lane departure warning, automatic braking, and other autonomous features. Aftermarket windshields are generally cheaper than OE windshields, so it can be a way to save money if purse strings are tight when an unexpected windshield replacement is needed. Just realize that an aftermarket windshield may come with its own cost.

Windshield Manufacturing Costs

Pricing fluctuations affect all major industries and auto glass is not excluded. So it’s good to keep in mind that other than vehicle options, there are other factors that determine the cost you’ll pay when it comes time to replace your vehicle’s windshield, sidelites, backlite, quarter, or vent glass.

Let’s start with the glass itself- glass prices can fluctuate for numerous reasons. Starting with the manufacturing process, this can be caused by:

  1. Labor prices (many trade industries are facing labor shortages)
  2. Machinery costs (for the actual manufacturing of the glass itself)
  3. Real estate costs (buildings and warehouses)
  4. Transportation costs – gas, oil, etc.

Windshield Installation Costs

When asking the question “how much does a windshield cost?” you now know, these factors will ultimately change what the manufacturer charges to the glass shop and the glass shop’s profit margin on parts. From here, the glass shop can actually be affected by all the same factors, which can lead to a second layer of price adjustments on their end to compensate for operating and labor costs. The end result is price adjustments to you, the customer.

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. These local companies will provide you with an instant price quote, so you know up front what the windshield replacement for your vehicle will cost.

When Does Insurance Cover Windshield Repair?

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.

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 file a claim 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 Your Windshield 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 to your insurance company for reimbursement. Be sure to include your name and policy number at a minimum.

Glass.com can provide you with instant quotes from auto glass companies in your area. You choose the company that’s right for you and they’ll contact you quickly to get your replacement started.

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