Getting a crack or chip in your windshield is not only annoying but can also be dangerous. Your windshield’s function is to protect against the elements, debris and other objects. When your windshield is damaged, it may not be able to perform this protection well.
If not dealt with quickly and effectively, chips and cracks can spread across your whole windshield affecting your safety and visibility. You will need to repair or replace your windshield. But you shouldn’t have to pay too much to fix your windshield glass.
The typical cost for a windshield repair is between $60 to $100. If the crack or chip is smaller, the repair cost tends to be cheaper. A single chip can go for $80 with an extra $20 for the additional chip, and a longer crack can cost more than $125.
Note that a repair and replacement are not the same. You can repair small cracks and chips, but larger ones require you to replace the entire windshield. It’s much more expensive for replacement. If the windshield is unrepairable and needs to be replaced, it can cost around $350 including labor.
You may be able to get help with a windshield repair or replacement through your insurance agency or state. Some states have strict restrictions when it comes to windshield repairs. For instance, if a crack obstructs a driver’s view it may be required by law to get replaced. Some states also offer free windshield replacement, mandating that insurance cover it, because it is so important to the safety of drivers.
Even if you don’t have insurance or live in a state that helps to cover windshield repair costs, you should still repair your windshield glass since it is dangerous to drive with cracks.
A windshield repair is quicker than a windshield replacement because the technician will change fix the one area. A repairer will inject polymer resin over the damage. Once it dries, the technician will smooth it over and the repair is practically invisible.
After the repair is done, you should always check for yourself to verify that the glass is completely smooth and centered. Take it for a test drive to ensure that there are no leaks or ‘whistling’ sounds of wind coming through the glass. Before you leave, confirm with the installer that if there are any problems you can contact them for a follow-up appointment.
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Average Windshield Repair Cost
The average windshield repair cost ranges from $60 to $100 for chips or $125 to $150 for cracks. Chips are when a rock or debris hits your window and makes a small indent, while cracks are when you start to get a line in your windshield. For chips, the low end of costs would be $50, and you may need to pay up to $150 on the more expensive end for larger cracks.
However, the costs to repair a windshield will vary depending on where you are, the type of car your drive, and the type of glass you need. Luxury cars and foreign cars will cost more to fix the windshield, as well as cars with a driver assistance system that need glass that will require technicians to unplug cameras or navigate around the system. There are less expensive windshield glass types you can purchase; however, they might be warped or less likely to last, meaning they could easily chip again.
If an installer offers a price lower than $50, be wary because they will likely only have low-quality glass that may be distorted and hard to look through. If they suggest a cost over $150, verify that you are talking about a repair, not a replacement. Replacements do cost up to $400, but you don’t always need a full replacement for a small crack.
Windshield repairs are generally pretty affordable, but with insurance, you could even get them for free. Fortunately, you may be able to get your insurance company to cover the cost.
Dealership Windshield Repair Cost
Most car dealerships can do windshield repairs and replacements. But typically, it’s no better than replacing your windshield with a car glass technician. Dealers typically charge $150 to $300 more than an auto glass specialist, regardless of your car make or model. That will bring the total cost to $200 to $450. Part of the reason for this is that auto glass specialists can use aftermarket glass or order the more expensive original glass from the manufacturer.
The advantage of getting a windshield replacement at a dealership is that they will use original glass, original equipment manufactured (OEM), from the vehicle manufacturer. That way, you know that the glass will fit perfectly, will not be distorted, and will be made of high quality to protect you. Additionally, if you have a driver assistance system or a monitor on your dash, you may need a specific type of windshield that only a dealer or manufacturer can provide.
Finally, another reason you may want to go to the dealer for your windshield repair or replacement is that some insurance companies require you to use the dealer for coverage. Check with your insurance company to get the details on your particular policy.
Walmart Windshield Repair Cost
Walmart does not offer windshield replacement or repair services. However, you can purchase a do-it-yourself windshield repair kit from Walmart. If you have a small crack this may be the cheapest option. Walmart also provides detailed instructions for how to fix cracks or chips in your windshield.
Costco Windshield Repair Cost
Costco members can get $25 off windshield or glass replacements and repair with Safelite Auto Glass while some Costco members have reported saving hundreds of dollars at Safelite with Costco discounts. Costco members also receive preferred pricing and treatment.
Just visit the Costco auto program, select parts and services, and enter your zip code for details. You can also call Safelite directly, let them know you are a Costco member and ask for a quote.
AAA Windshield Repair Cost
It will cost about the same with AAA to repair a windshield as at other locations. So, you can expect to pay anywhere from $50 to $450, depending on if you need a replacement or repair. AAA will cover windshield replacement or repair costs if you have comprehensive coverage; however, you still need to pay a deductible unless you live in a state that waives the deductible for windshield repairs.
To submit a claim for a cracked or chipped windshield with AAA, call for a quote or schedule an online appointment. AAA will likely point you to approved vendors and technicians to get the repair done. For instance, Glasstek is an AAA-approved auto glass repair provider.
Coverage with AAA may also vary depending on how your windshield was damaged. For instance, if the windshield was damaged in an accident and you were at fault, then AAA may charge you a collision cost. If you were not at fault, then the other driver’s insurance should cover the damages. However, AAA comprehensive coverage will always cover damaged from weather, vandalism and theft.
Fix it Yourself with DIY Glass Repair Kit
You can also choose to do it yourself with a DIY glass repair kit, but you may do more harm than good. DIY glass repair kits start at just $10 and are available on Amazon. But you should only attempt to do it yourself if you have enough confidence to do it correctly, and you only have a small crack or chip in your windshield.
Using a windshield repair kit, you can prevent a crack from spreading but if you want to fix the damage, you’ll need to work with a professional windshield installer. In general, it’s best to leave windshield repair to the professionals. And, in the case of a windshield replacement, always leave it to the pros.
Repair Or Replace Windshield
In general, it is better to replace a windshield if the chip is larger than a quarter, or the crack is larger than a dollar bill, and/or the damage is in the driver’s line of sight.
It is less expensive to repair a windshield than to replace it but replace a broken windshield may be more effective in the long run. The average windshield replacement cost is about $350, while the average cost of a windshield repair is about $99. Prices can vary a lot depending on the size of the windshield, type of car, and whether it is the front or back windshield. For instance, luxury vehicles may cost as high as $1,000 for windshield replacement.
However, in some cases, you may need to replace, rather than repair your vehicle’s windshield. If your chip is smaller than a quarter, or crack is under a few inches long, then you can generally repair that specific area of your windshield. However, larger chips and cracks will require your windshield to be replaced. Additionally, if a crack or chip is in the driver’s line of sight, it can obstruct their view, even after a repair. Depending on the quality of the repair, there may still be a slight bend in the glass which makes it hard for the driver to see clearly.
Finally, some states require a windshield replacement if a crack or chip is in a driver’s field of view. That is because windshield repair can distort the view that can affect visibility and safety while driving.
|Windshield Repair||Windshield Replacement|
|Cost||$50 – $150||$200 – $400|
|Chip size||Smaller than a quarter||Larger than a quarter|
|Crack size||Only a few inches||Larger than a dollar bill|
|How long it takes||30 minutes||60 minutes|
So, whether or not you get a windshield repair or a replacement will depend on the size of the crack, where it is on the windshield and the cost.
Using Insurance on Windshield Replacement
Contact your insurance company to verify that your plan covers windshield replacement. If you have comprehensive insurance or have a plan that includes glass coverage, then they will typically cover your windshield replacement without requiring you to pay a deductible. Your insurance company will also likely recommend a qualified technician to do the job.
Most car insurances will cover your windshield replacement under their comprehensive coverage. Some states even require insurance companies to waive a deductible for windshield replacement to encourage safe driving.
States with free windshield replacement include Florida, Kentucky and South Carolina. However, you will need to have comprehensive insurance to qualify. Kentucky and South Carolina also mandate that insurance companies waive deductibles for all glass repairs, not just windshields.
Note that in some cases a windshield claim can increase your insurance cost, but it depends on how frequently you submit a windshield replacement claim. It’s worth it to replace your windshield with insurance if your repair cost is higher than your insurance deductible.
Repairing windshield glass is an essential part of road safety. Repairs can cost as low as $50, or even $10 if you can do it yourself. However, for larger cracks and chips you may need to pay up to $450, or even $1,000 for luxury vehicles and newer cars with driver assistance systems. But, at the end of the day, it is worth it to protect yourself and others on the road.
Here are the key things to remember about windshield repair and replacement:
- Some states mandate that you repair cracks and chips in the driver’s line of sight, and you can get a ticket for having cracks
- Most comprehensive auto insurance plans cover windshield repair and replacement
- Some states mandate that insurance companies waive the deductible for windshield repair, making it free to you
- Always double check that a repair is done correctly and make sure the glass is smooth
- Dealerships are the most expensive place to get windshield repair, but they also will come with the original manufacturer’s glass
- Costco members can get a discount on windshield repair with Safelite
- AAA covers windshield repair and replacement costs for members with a comprehensive plan, although you may still need to pay a deductible