How to replace a damaged windshield – At some point, your windshield glass will crack or break. While most of us take our windshields for granted and believe they would never shatter due to their appearance, dealing with a broken windshield is a very typical occurrence that requires preparation and at the very least a basic awareness of what has to be done to repair it.
When your windshield becomes cracked or shattered to a certain point, you will encounter safety concerns that may affect you, your passengers, and other motorists on the road.
Replacing the windshield entails some repair charges, which you might considerably save if you chose to replace your windshield. As a result, this page includes a DIY windshield replacement guide and answers the issue, “how to replace a damaged windshield safely?”
How to replace a damaged windshield (DIY)?
Replacing the windshield is not a difficult task, and many drivers have mastered the process and replaced their windshields without the assistance of a professional.
However, because you’ll be working with glass, there is a very real possibility of safety hazards. Therefore, the most critical thing to remember is to understand how to repair windshields safely and properly without producing any harmful repercussions.
Whether you have a broken rear or front windshield, the technique is extremely identical, and all you need to do is follow these simple steps:
Locate a shop that replaces windshield glass.
The first step in “how to safely replace a shattered windshield” is to locate a shop that sells replacement glass. Typically, you’ll have several options when it comes to choosing a windshield replacement:
Numerous dealerships provide brand new OEM windshield glass that you can purchase directly from them. Consider providing them with information about their vehicle, which may include the make, model, and year, in order to obtain an accurate measurement.
However, dealership components are often more expensive than alternative options, and obtaining the item from dealerships will take longer.
If you’ve established contact with various glass installers in your neighborhood, you can inquire about their ability to prepare the windshield glass replacement.
Again, you’ll submit specific measurements, and they’re quite adept at designing and cutting the exact dimensions required for windshield glass replacement.
Many vendors on eBay will sell you an exact replacement windshield for your glass if they have a broken vehicle but a totally functioning windshield.
Gather the necessary tools
This task of how to replace a damaged windshield does not require the acquisition of highly specialized tools, and all equipment is considered to be quite simple. However, you must use the proper adhesive to adhere the glass to your vehicle.
There are numerous varieties of glue on the market, and it is recommended that you review the major advantages and disadvantages to ensure that you purchased the correct and strongest one.
Among the tools, you’ll require are the following:
- A collection of scrapers
- Water that is soapy
- Adhesive gun
- A primer that is compatible with the same brand of adhesive
- Aset of pliers
- Chisels made of plastic
- Suction cup for transporting the glass
- A scraper for metal
Eliminate the previous broken list
To begin learning “how to replace a cracked windshield safely?” You’ll first need to remove the old shattered glass. To accomplish this, you cannot just handle it by hand, nor can you rely on a shop vac that will not remove all broken glass without causing safety concerns.
It is critical to remember that you may find broken glass throughout the seats and doors. As a result, ensure that you have not left any small glass chips on the vehicle, as this could result in harm to the passengers or to you.
Pinch the stock glass out of the pinch Weld
Following the removal of the broken glass, you must also remove any residual glass embedded in the pinch weld. It is critical to understand that once the stock glass is removed, there is a very good risk that some of the remaining glass will fold out. As a result, you may use a simple adhesive to join all of the glass together to create a single piece.
After taping the glass, use a plastic scraper and a weighted hammer to remove any remaining glass from the weld. While removing the glass, take care not to harm the paint. Although certain specialized tools assist you in removing the old glass, those tools are more expensive, and since you’re only going to do this once in your life or maybe twice over the life of your car, it may not be worthwhile to purchase that equipment.
When you reach the windshield heater wire, you must manually separate it from the old windshield and reconnect it to the new one. If you’re removing the rear windshield, you may find it easier to open the trunk in order to gain access to the glass at the bottom of the windshield. Similarly, you may wish to pop the hood in order to have access to the lower portion of your front windshield’s glass.
Once you’ve removed the glass from the environment, it’s recommended that you place it in a box, not a bag, and place it in the recycle bin. Vacuum the area once again to ensure that no remaining glass fragments fell onto the vehicle during the process of removing the glass from the weld.
Prepare the car for the installation of the new windshields.
After removing all of the glass, you’ll prepare the vehicle for the new windshield installation. You do not have to remove all of the urethane from the glass; you can shave it off and still use a large portion of it.
To achieve the best results when applying fresh urethane, you’ll need to remove all muck and particles to avoid the new material from becoming contaminated.
At this stage, you can shave the urethan down to one or two millimeters thick with a razor blade. However, keep in mind that it is possible for scratches to occur on the paint, which is the last thing you want because scratches produce rust, which can eventually detach the glass from the vehicle.
Clean the glass
After you’ve finished prepping the vehicle, you’ll prep the glass as well. If the glass is not brand new, you will save time. However, if you acquired a used glass, you must prepare it, which will require additional measures.
To do so, you’ll need to unhook the heating cords, as you’ll already have them on the vehicle, and you’ll also need to remove all of the urethane from around the windshield, as you’ll already have a nice one.
While cleaning the urethane, you should not be concerned about scratching the glass, as glass is considerably stronger than your car’s paint.
Following that, you’ll use a specialized glass cleaner to thoroughly clean all of the new glass. Then, add the suction cups, which will assist you in installing the glass without the risk of breaking it. Following that, follow the instructions currently listed on the primer to achieve the greatest results.
Coat with Urethane
Allow at least 10 minutes for the primer to dry before installing the glass to your car. Then, you’ll need to prime the car and prepare it for the new glass. It’s critical to note that you do not have to apply the primer across the entire windshield area; it’s good for regions where the urethane has corroded or the urethane has become very thin.
To apply their product effectively, you’ll want to trim the tip to a triangular. When applying it, ensure that the bottle is perpendicular to the vehicle’s structure. Experts recommend starting at the bottom of your windshield and working your way up.
Replace window glass
The final step is to carefully remove the suction cups from the glass and install it. You want to ensure that the glass sits correctly in the correct spot because once it comes into contact with the urethane, it will adhere, causing a mess and making it impossible to install the glass properly.
Dealing with damaged windshield glass can be extremely dangerous and crucial. Additionally, it may result in legal circumstances in which you are unable to operate your car freely on public roadways. As a result, learning how to replace a damaged windshield enables you to resolve the issue without incurring labor charges.
It is crucial to note that if your vehicle has significant technical issues, replacing the existing windshield may not be worth the effort. Rather than that, you may want to consider selling your vehicle and using the proceeds to purchase a newer model with superior windshield glass.