Winter is the season of auto glass abuse as people try to minimize the time they spend in the cold restoring visibility through their windows. Unfortunately, many time-saving tricks damage your auto glass, making it more susceptible to chips and cracks you have to pay to get repaired.
To ensure the integrity of your auto glass stays intact throughout the cold, avoid these types of damage:
Windshield wiper scratches
Windshield wiper blades are soft and pliable, so how could they damage your windshield? The same blades that flex to effectively squeegee water away get brittle in the cold. And, if your blades are old and worn, chances are they are also torn. That means there are hardened and/or uneven surfaces scraping against your windshield with every pass of the wiper arms. During the winter, the watery stuff you’re sloughing away likes contains road grit and grime, and possibly salt or gravel used to increase road traction.
All this abrasion can wear small scratches and grooves in your auto glass. And these scratches are nearly impossible to fill, yet they can increase glare and impair visibility.
Hot water-induced weakening
The gradual warming of your front and rear windshield by your defroster may seem like it takes forever, but resist the temptation to quickly remove frost and ice using hot water. The sudden change in temperature weakens the auto glass, making your windows more susceptible to damage from road debris. (The sudden change in temperature is similarly damaging to your paint, too.)
Scratches and gouges from scraping ice and frost with the wrong tools
Ice scrapers are not expensive tools, so there is no reason why you should not have one or use anything else to remove frost and ice. Yet, people do; they improvise with all kinds of metal implements that can scratch or gouge auto glass.
If you have abused your auto glass but have not noticed any damage, stop and do what is required for proper auto glass care—replacing worn wiper blades, letting the defroster take its time and using the right tools to manually clear away frost and ice. If you have noticed damage, bring your vehicle to Astro Auto Glass for an inspection by our experienced professionals. We will give you an honest assessment about whether or not the damage can be repaired or the entire window needs to be replaced.