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 |  Jan 20 2014, 9:02 AM

eseries 01

Over 4,500 Ford E-Series vans are being called back because their windshields have bubbles that can affect outward visibility.

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 |  Aug 11 2011, 4:45 PM

You’re driving along on the highway, watching the road when suddenly your peaceful reverie is broken by a load bang on the windshield. Some inconsiderate rock has left behind a windshield crack… now what are you going to do? We’ve got some ideas and tips that will fix that pesky crack and ensure the problem doesn’t get any bigger.

Cracks and chips impact driving visibility, so you don’t want to put off fixing them. Did you know that if a crack is longer than 12 inches or if a chip is larger than a quarter, you’re windshield’s integrity has been compromised? If so, you’d been get it fixed ASAP. And we realize that it’s not always possible to stop what you’re doing just to fix your windshield, so if you can’t fix it right away, be sure that the crack or chip doesn’t interfere with your view.

Here are a few tips that will minimize the damage and get you on your way:

  • Use a specialist. A general mechanic won’t do in these instances, so use an auto-glass-repair specialist. The glass installer should be AGRSS registered and has National Glass Association-trained technicians. In some cases, mobile glass installers will come to you.
  • Get rid of dirt: If dirt gets into a crack or chip, it can prove more difficult to repair.  Place a small piece of clear tape over the point of impact, but only if it doesn’t block your vision.
  • Temperature changes: Extreme temperature and cracked windshields don’t get along. Keep your car out of the sun when parked, as the heat builds up and weakens the windshield, causing the crack to get even bigger.
  • Air conditioning/defrosting: When you get into your car, don’t turn the air conditioning or use your defroster on high. Let your car cool down or warm up gradually on a lower setting.
  • Don’t wash: Think of it as an excuse to not wash your car for a bit, as water in the damaged area can cause your windshield to crack even more.
  • Don’t jolt your car or windows: When getting in and out of your car, don’t slam the door while the windows are all the way up. The extra pressure inside the vehicle can cause the crack to spread.

[Source: Chicago Tribune]