It's not unusual to be driving down the road when a stone comes out of nowhere, hits your windshield, and leaves it with a chip. You probably figure that the chip is no big deal, so you just leave it alone and go on with your life.
But what happens when cold weather comes, especially frigid weather, and you still haven't repaired that small chip?
Can cold weather turn the little chip on your windshield into a big crack?
When you prepare your car for winter, experts advise that you pay extra attention to your windshield.
Just as your windshield expands in the heat, it also contracts when it's cold. Extreme changes in temperature are especially hard on your windshield.
Cold weather alone is unlikely to cause your windshield to crack or break, but when your windshield is already damaged, such as when it's chipped, your windshield is at risk for further damage.
Chips and existing cracks fill with moisture from rain, ice, and snow. Then, when the moisture freezes and expands, the chip or crack can grow. That's a basic way to put it, but it's a pretty basic concept.
So, what can you do to prevent this from happening?
Be sure to inspect your windshield regularly and get any damage, even small chips, repaired as soon as possible by a reputable windshield repair shop. Ask friends and family for who they recommend for windshield repairs if you don't know where to take your vehicle for repair.
Also, your auto insurance might pay for the repair cost depending on the specific circumstances that resulted in the damage. Check with your agent or read your policy for further information about whether your insurance might help cover the cost of repairing your windshield.
Finally, be careful about how you remove snow and ice from your windshield.
Do not use hot water to melt snow or ice from your windshield. If you must use water, use cold water.
And don't immediately blast the defroster and crank up the heat as high as it will go. Instead, start at a lower temperature and gradually warm your vehicle to avoid stressing your windshield. Being patient will help you to avoid having a big, and expensive, repair to deal with.
Your windshield is a part of the vehicle that drivers often neglect. Remember, when you take care of your car, it is more likely to take care of you. So, like the experts say, don't forget to inspect your windshield each time you are in your vehicle.
And if it is damaged, fix it as soon as you can.
Stay safe and be careful out there.