You are driving down the highway minding your own business when you get trapped behind a gravel truck. A few loose pebbles later and you have a chip or two on your windshield. What looks like a small problem can blossom into a big one if you do not take care of it quickly. As a motorist, you need to know how to protect your windshield and what to do if it is damaged.
Protecting Your Windshield
You cannot prevent all dangers to your windshield, but you can lower the odds of damage by taking a few steps. If you see a construction vehicle ahead of you on the road, slow down and change lanes if possible. If you follow too closely, you are more likely to have rocks and other construction materials flake off the truck and hit your vehicle. Also, you can easily get pinned by other traffic behind the truck, upping the chances that your windshield is going to get bombed by debris. It's better to be late than to drive into work with a chipped-up windshield.
If you live in a rural area, you probably have to face the occasional gravel road. The only way to minimize possible vehicle damage, including windshield problems, is to drive slowly to avoid churning up rocks and having them dent your vehicle's body and/or glass. Again, leave plenty of space between your car or truck and any vehicle ahead of you.
After the Damage
Once your windshield is damaged, you have to take action. Even little chips can easily expand into large cracks, making it impossible to see the road clearly. For many of these smaller dents and cracks, an automotive glass repair company can send someone to your home or work to repair the damage. You shouldn't try to repair a crack over a foot long, simply because the repair is unlikely to hold. In that case, you will need a new windshield, something they can provide for you. Until you can get your car repaired, do not wash your car or truck because the water pressure can expand the cracks.
When it comes to your windshield, flying objects are its enemy. Often rocks or other items flying off of trucks inflict the damage, but simply traveling on a gravel road can also cause chips and cracks. Employ driving practices that will protect your windshield, and when it is damaged, call your local auto glass expert for a repair or replacement. For more information, consider contacting a professional like those at Glass On Wheels.