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Encompass® Insurance Insights & Articles

Windshield Damage & Repair: What Does My Insurance Cover?

House hunting in cold weather.

One moment you’re driving down the highway on your morning commute, the next moment a small rock flies up from the car in front of you, chipping part of the windshield. Yes, your windshield is cracked, but it’s not all bad news. Depending on the extent of the damage and your insurance policy, the repair may be completed at little or no cost to you. From small chips to big cracks, here are some helpful things to know about windshield damage and potential repair options:

Windshield Damage Repair Guide

  1. Report the claim as soon as possible.

    As soon as you notice a crack in your windshield you should seek professional assistance to ensure your vehicle is safe to drive. Should you have to file a claim, reach out to your insurance agent to assist you with beginning the claims process. It’s important to report the claim as soon as possible as a small chip may turn into a large crack if left unattended.

  2. Know your repair options.
    You may be eligible for a repair - rather than a more expensive replacement - if the damage can fit under a dollar bill, reports Safelite, a windshield repair company. If the damage is on the edge of the windshield, in your line of sight, or the windshield has greater than three chips it may have to be fully replaced. A windshield crack repair will leave only a slight blemish that becomes less noticeable with time. Plus, the repair leaves the original factory sealed windshield in place. If the chip is smaller than the size of a dollar bill, according to Safelite, your windshield will need to be repaired.

  3. Talk to a professional.
    Talk to a professional about your different repair options. A qualified auto glass repair technician evaluates a number of different factors when deciding on a repair or replacement.

  4. Don’t delay a repair or replacement.
    Chips can spread into large cracks, eventually requiring a full windshield replacement if not addressed promptly. A chip may be professionally sealed, cured and polished in as little as 30 minutes. If you have a major crack, prompt repair is important, too. Cracks can spread with temperature, hindering your ability to safely operate your vehicle. While windshields are specially constructed to prevent the glass from collapsing in on you while driving, it’s still not safe to drive with a major crack.

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ECC Monitor: OK