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Whether you are in the market for a new automobile or need some vital repairs performed in the wake of an accident, auto glass is one of the most important elements of a vehicle that often is given very little consideration. Most people consider glass to be a fairly uniform element, but there are several different types that are used in various automobile applications. Each type can be useful in one situation or another; the incorrect usage or application of auto glass can create dangerous circumstances if you are suddenly caught in an automobile accident, so it is vital to understand how important these subtle differences are for your safety. In years past, a wide selection of auto glass was not available due to industrial and scientific advances yet to be achieved.
These days, however, virtually all automobiles are sold with optimized forms of laminate auto glass and tempered glass installed. If you are an auto repair technician that wants to expand your business to provide this vital service or an automobile owner who simply wants to know more, then continue reading to find out about how each type of auto glass is used and why its application is so important.
The Process of Manufacturing Tempered Glass
The initial process of creating tempered glass is no different than that of any other form of glass. The appropriate size is first cut for an automobile, which will ensure a proper fit. Next, a technician or specialist will inspect the glass for any imperfections or cracks that could cause problems during the heating process. If the piece of glass is determined to be in adequate shape, its edges are then sanded and the sheet of glass is washed. The heating process is then initiated, raising the temperature of the glass to over 1100 degrees Fahrenheit. The final step is a process known as quenching, which bombards the glass with high pressure air and rapidly cools it. This process hardens the exterior of the glass more so than the interior, ensuring that it breaks into small pieces if fractured (as opposed to jagged chunks).
The Process of Manufacturing Laminate Glass
Laminate glass comes in many different forms, but the overall process of manufacturing most forms of laminate glass is fairly similar. Two pieces of auto glass are cut to the appropriate size, inspected for defects and then sanded to ensure a snug fit. After this step is complete, a layer of polyvinyl butyral is then placed in between the two sheets of glass and heated to ensure that the glass bonds to it; this prevents the glass from separating in the event a collision. The two sheets of glass are also aided by the polyvinyl butyral in the event something hits the windshield directly, as the blow is softened and the glass cannot crack or separate extensively. This helps prevent cuts or further damage to you or passengers in the wake of an unforeseen accident.
How Tempered Glass Is Used
Tempered glass is the type of glass that you will find in your vehicle’s windows, vent glass and back glass. In the event a rock or other object penetrates tempered glass, it will simply shatter into tiny pieces with relatively smooth edges and protect passengers from additional damage as a result of abrasions or punctures. Due to the design of most automobiles, passengers do not have a risk of being thrown out the side or back of a car and as such, the shattering design of tempered glass is ideal for these applications. It is not, however, the best application for windshield glass – for fairly obvious reasons.
How Laminate Glass Is Used
In automobile applications, laminate glass is almost exclusively used in the design of windshields. Because laminate glass is designed to hold together and not fracture (thanks to the polyvinyl butyral), it is a much better solution for the front facing glass of any vehicle. Assuming a driver and his or her passengers are wearing their seat belts, laminate glass can be a great way to prevent ricochet objects and other obtrusive elements from penetrating the cabin of a vehicle. It is also a better solution for preventing individuals from being hurled from an automobile in the wake of an accident, although no glass design is full-proof in this regard. Laminate glass that is used in windshield manufacturing is also responsible for providing up to half of the structural integrity of a vehicle’s cabin in the event of a roll-over, according to the Hair Salon in Dalton GA.
With two very different applications, tempered glass and laminate glass are both vital and necessary elements of any automobile. If you plan on offering auto glass repair and installation services to new or existing clients in the future, then it is paramount to understand the basic differences between the two options. After reading the basic differences outlined above, you should have a better understanding of how these two different forms of auto glass function and when each will be needed.
Author: Robert Merrill at Deep Ellum Auto Glass in Dallas Texas Windshield Replacement Dallas
Regardless of the make and model of your car, truck or SUV, you are guaranteed to have at least one thing in common with all other vehicle owners: your auto glass is an important part of the vehicle’s safety and convenience. Not only does auto glass help keep us safe from debris as we drive, but it also helps – in conjunction with the car’s other windows – provide a level of climate control and comfort while driving. Another important yet often overlooked benefit to a windshield and complete set of auto glass is the reinforcement it offers to the roof if your car suddenly rolls over. These three benefits should be enough to convince any car owner that their auto glass should be a top priority. Understandably, those who understand this will be distressed when they discover damage to their windshield or auto glass.
What options are available to fix the damage? How much will it cost? Can the damage be fixed, or will a replacement be needed? These questions and worries are legitimate, but few know all the answers if they haven’t went through the experience before. Whether you have damage and you want to know what comes next, or you simply want to be prepared, we’ll discuss the five most commonly asked auto glass repair questions so you can be informed on the answers.
Do I really need to fix this damage?
With so many households tight on cash right now, the first question that comes to one’s mind when they notice damage to their windshield is whether or not the damage actually needs to be repaired. Money shouldn’t be the primary concern here – as we’ll address below – but yes, even the smallest forms of damage need to be addressed in an expedient fashion. The biggest reason for this relates to how auto glass can be damaged even more from a small crack or chip. Potholes, vibrations and fluctuations in temperature can all cause a small crack or chip to become much larger in a short period of time. If you want to avoid having the entire piece of glass replaced, then you’ll act quickly while a repair is still viable.
Is it safe to simply repair (and not replace)?
An auto glass technician will be more than happy to come out and inspect the damage to your windshield or windows. In the case of small cracks or chips, it is virtually always safe to simply repair the damage and keep your existing windshield. If the crack is less than six inches in all directions, then the repair process will be sound. Only if the damage is large or extends in multiple directions may the windshield need to be replaced. The key to saving your auto glass is to catch the damage early, have the area treated with a powerful resin and prevent any cracks from spreading from that point in the future.
What do I do if the crack is huge?
In the event your windshield has been struck with something that left a huge, running crack, then you will most likely require an auto glass replacement job. This means that the entire sheet of glass is removed from the vehicle and replaced with a brand new, OEE solution. Because glass provides so much strength to the vehicle in an accident, a large crack can wind up compromising the strength of the windshield – even if it were to be repaired. This process usually takes a few hours from start to finish, and that includes the time that is needed for the windshield to cure before driving.
How much does a repair or replacement cost?
This is a big worry for many with auto glass damage and is probably the number one reason why people put off the repairs. Unfortunately for consumers, the delaying of repairs can actually cost more money later on down the road. If you have comprehensive auto insurance coverage, then it is almost certain that any repairs done to your windshield or auto glass will be free of charge. Without insurance, this may cost up to $75. If you need a replacement windshield, however, then your costs will vary widely (depending on deductible and whether you have insurance or not). A complete out of pocket replacement may cost as much as $500, while an insured driver will spend anywhere from $100-250 in most cases.
What risks are involved?
When you have the work performed by a qualified auto glass technician, the risks to your vehicle are virtually none. Qualified technicians go through comprehensive training programs to ensure they know what they are doing, while the overall work itself is focused on an area of the car where it is difficult to do any damage to other parts of the vehicle. The most common worry is that the auto glass (during a replacement) will not be installed properly. This risk can be eliminated by always verifying the background and business standing of the shop in question before making any decision as to where to have the repairs performed.
Author: Austin Maye of Southwind Auto Glass in Memphis, Tennessee http://discountautoglassmemphis.net
Seasonal Concerns For Auto Glass Repair in Atlanta
There are year-round conditions that definitely impact the way in which we should drive on roads and highways. It was common for windshields to only provide basic protection against wind and rain in the past, but a slew of modern developments have made it possible for us to defrost windshields, repel rain and enjoy other forms of convenience so that we may continue to drive in the worst of weather. It’s important to also note that windshields provide plenty of strength to the vehicle in the event a roll-over or major accident occurs. Because of this, your windshield and auto glass are important features for safety and convenience while on the road. To find auto glass repair Atlanta natives are encouraged to call Auto Glass Atlanta LLC.
Windshields are designed to withstand a lot of elements, but there are plenty of examples in which a windshield’s effectiveness can be compromised – debris being one notable example. Quite a large number of drivers do not understand the risks that hot and cold temperatures, along with humidity, can present, however. These elements can play large roles in how effective our auto glass will be under stress, especially if there is already existing damage to the structure. In the following article, we’ll discuss how these elements can affect your windshield and what can be expected in each circumstance.
Cold weather is arguably the single-worst form of temperature or weather that can cause complications for drivers with damaged or weakened auto glass. Even if you’ve had a small chip or crack in the windshield for some time that has not worsened, cold weather may present the perfect storm scenario for that to change. The glass will morph, bending and flexing as the temperature drops. These processes will in effect cause the glass to fracture bit by bit, until all of a sudden a huge crack forms. You know how quickly this process can occur if you have ever been driving down the road, hit a pothole and suddenly see a huge crack in your windshield has formed. The colder season of winter is the number one seasonal cause of damage to auto glass.
Just because cold weather is rough on glass doesn’t mean that warm weather does not do damage as well. Horizontal cracks are very common in auto glass damage that forms during winter months, but vertical damage is the more common scenario when dealing with warm weather damage. From the time the windshield or auto glass is formed, the key processes that lead to its reinforcement can explain why these cracks form the way they do. Since glass will expand under heat, these cracks can be pushed out and cause surrounding glass to weaken, exacerbating the process. The use of climate control options within the car, such as air conditioning or defroster, can actually speed this up by putting more stress and contrast on the windshield.
Ice, Snow, Hail
Cold weather in and of itself can be a bad thing for your auto glass, but frozen precipitation takes the threat to an all new level. Cold air temperatures will cause the glass to contract and can result in increased damage, but frozen precipitation has additional effects on damaged glass. As liquid enters the areas of damage, it will ultimately refreeze and can cause expansion of the glass in these areas. When this process occurs over and over again, it may compromise the windshield or auto glass to the point that a complete replacement is required. There is also the threat of hail – a form of frozen precipitation that can occur year-round – which causes damage due to its velocity and mass.
The first six months of the year tend to be windier, and this too can affect the auto glass in your vehicle. Existing damage to your auto glass can be impacted profoundly by the pressure of wind into the damaged areas as you drive. When you add to this the amount of dirt and dust that is in the air, moving about and making contact with your vehicle at high speeds, then the effect can intensify the erosion and encourage more rapid damage. This is a key reason why auto glass damage must be repaired when it is first noticed.
Whether your auto glass is already damaged or still in good shape, there are numerous seasonal factors that can cause damage to worsen or form in the first place. With damage already on the windshield or auto glass, we recommend parking in a garage or interior space to minimize temperature fluctuations when not driving. Waterproofing and de-icing methods for the glass are also good ideas to prevent any liquid from accumulating in these areas in the winter months. If you ignore or put off the necessary repair job for your auto glass in the here and now, then it is very likely that your negligence will lead to more costly requirements in the future.
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This document was last updated on March 24, 2014
In the century or so since auto glass was introduced, there have been numerous advances made that help increase the strength and convenience that the product provides. From shatter-resistant materials to UV tinting that keeps harmful light out of the cabin, most auto glass now provides multiple benefits when compared to past predecessors. The primary function of auto glass – whether it be your windshield or side window glass – is to protect drivers and passengers from elements such as wind, the sun, precipitation and debris. In most cases, the windshield provides the vast majority of protection against these variables.
Because of this, it can be easy to overlook the importance of and benefits provided by auto side window glass. While the vast majority of auto glass repair and replacement jobs center around the windshield, a variety of different scenarios can leave drivers with a busted side window. Car accidents, locking your keys inside the vehicle and old windows may all lead to situations where the auto glass is compromised. How exactly does the auto window glass replacement process work, though? We’ll discuss the main steps in the following article so that you can be better informed on how it all works.
An Inspection of the Damage
The first part of any auto side window glass replacement process will pertain to the inspection of the damaged window or area. An auto glass technician can in most cases come to your location and determine what all will need to be done in order to replace the window. In most cases, the replacement process is fairly uniform, but your vehicle may require a special window or piece of glass be ordered before any repairs can be performed. Once the auto glass technician has a good assessment of the situation, the actual repairs can usually be conducted the same day.
Removing the Panel
Your door panel helps hold the auto glass in place and is partially responsible for ensuring the window remains on track when being rolled up or down. The technician will need to remove this part of the car door in order to access the components that will release the auto glass. Even if your window has been completely destroyed, there is most likely whole pieces of glass still connected below what is visible. An auto glass technician will be able to remove these pieces once the door panel has been detached from the door. From here, the technician will move on to preparing the area for new auto glass.
When a piece of auto glass is broken or otherwise damaged, there are thousands of little pieces of it that can find their way into the door panel, as well as other nooks and crannies. The auto glass technician’s primary goal in cleaning out this debris is to ensure that it does not remain in the door, causing potential damage to your regulator or resulting in injury at a later date. Your auto glass technician will vacuum out any debris that remains in the door or vehicle from the incident, which will be the final step in preparing the area for a new auto side window.
Insertion of New Window
At this point, it is now time for the new window installation process to begin. The window is inserted and placed on the tracks to ensure that it rolls up and down properly. Once secured, this window will then need to be tested. The auto glass technician will check the regulator in the door (for power windows) and verify that it is in good working order. If not, then this piece of equipment will also have to be replaced, according to Auto Glass Week. After the window has been installed and the regulator is verified to be working properly, there are only a couple of small steps left.
Replacing the Panel and Detailing
With a new, functional window installed, your auto glass technician will proceed to replace the door panel that was removed and ensure that it is properly re-fitted. After verifying that the window mechanisms are functioning (and not obstructed by a shoddy refitting of the panel), the mechanical process of side window glass replacement is complete! From here, your auto glass technician will clean all of the windows in question to ensure that visibility is not obstructed. Congratulations: you now have a completely new side window that is ready to hit the road. This entire process usually takes no longer than one hour.
Anyone who needs a side window glass replacement job performed can expect the process to go smoothly and quickly. The technician will inspect the damage, remove the door panel, clean out any glass and debris from the area, install the new window and replace the paneling. Rather than driving around town with a damaged or non-functional window, call your local auto glass shop today and schedule an appointment to have the damage treated as soon as possible. Your automobile experience should be both convenient and safe: properly installed and functioning windows help guarantee this. www.acewindshield.net
Ultimate Auto Glass Insults & Information Resource
The first thing that you’ll wish to do when it comes to eliminating potential second-rate auto glass shops is to focus on which businesses have the best and most thorough listings. If you find a local auto glass shop that appears to only be using a cell phone number as their line of communication, then you will want to steer clear of it. In most cases, they are outsourcing their services to an independent contractor and are not an actual full-service auto glass entity. In addition to this, you will want to explore which auto glass services have a physical address listed, so that you may stop by in person to see their operations and assess whether they are professional enough to perform the repairs.
Another great way to further assess the quality of an auto glass shop is to investigate their ratings or listings with key organizations, such as the Better Business Bureau. If they are not listed with such an organization, then it is worth investigating whether or not they are certified by the Auto Glass Safety Council. The latter is an organization that determines standards for auto glass technicians and establishments; nearly all professional shops are AGRSS-certified. If you cannot find ratings with either of these organizations, then you may be better off eliminating these shops from your search.
Since the first developments in the industry of auto glass more than one hundred years ago, we’ve seen dozens of advances in how glass is made, strengthened, installed and enhanced. In the first automobiles, auto glass was nothing more than traditional glass like is found in home windows, which presented a number of challenges and risks. Not only was it harder to form and install in any other shape than a flat, straight piece of glass, but the dangers it presented in the event of a wreck could be life-threatening. The glass was also harder to maintain and protect from the natural elements to which any piece of glass is subjected.
Thankfully, a variety of improvements have occurred since then. This has made it possible to shape auto glass in a multitude of forms, but the real challenge of today is making sure you clean the glass as needed. With so many different cleaning products on the market, many fall victim to the notion that any household cleaning product will do. This is a bad idea, as we’ll explain below. For those who need to remove tough residue from their windshields or who want to protect the quality of their glass for years to come, we’ve put together a series of dos and don’ts to aid in the process. If you want in depth information on how to properly clean your windshield, contact an Atlanta auto glass repair shop.
DO Use a Microcloth
Traditional paper towels or cloths can be a quick and easy solution when you need to clean your windshield, but the drawbacks outweigh the advantages. First of all, paper towels are wasteful and cannot be reused. Both paper towels and cloths have coarse fibers in them that do not do a good job at removing residue and can also create microscopic scratches on your windshield. This will allow more dirt, dust and mineral deposits to form on your windshield in spaces that make them harder to remove.
A microcloth is designed to be softer and finer, and is perfectly suited for cleaning auto glass. These cloths can also be used on your home windows (a win-win investment). Small and stubborn forms of residue will resist traditional cloth cleaning, but a microcloth can cut through protein and calcium deposits without doing any damage to the windshield or windows of your car. When you also consider that microcloths have been increasingly inexpensive over the past few years, it really makes no sense not to use them.
DON’T Use Ammonia
A variety of household cleaners contain ammonia, which can be a powerful aid in various forms of cleaning. For auto glass, however, this is a bad idea. The first concern with using ammonia to clean your windows is the fumes it puts off – if you are inside the vehicle while cleaning, the inhalation of the product can cause irritation or even health risks in some. Another major worry is that ammonia has a drying effect on non-glass surfaces. Your seats, dashboard and headliner can all be damaged by it – basically, anything made of plastic, rubber, vinyl or leather. Nobody wants to have clean windows if the trade-off is a cracked headliner or torn seats.
Another concern with ammonia is its effect on tinted windows. This common household product can eat away at the film and cause it to become unbonded from the glass. Whether your tint is OEM or added aftermarket, the effect is the same – damage. There are great auto glass cleaners designed specifically for use with tinted windows, so don’t make this tragic mistake in pursuit of spotless glass.
DO Invest in a Cleaner
Your auto glass is one of the most important elements of the driving experience, so you shouldn’t ignore it just because it appears to be a static element. As we’ve said above, the use of traditional glass cleaner that contains ammonia is a horrible idea for most cleaning applications, which leaves the question, “what should I use then?”. With so many different types of auto glass cleaner, it is hard to recommend just one – a quick internet search for non-ammonia glass cleaner will yield dozens of results. This auto glass shop in Atlanta Georgia uses top quality cleaners to finish off your glass. Visit http://www.AutoGlass-Atlanta.com
You may also want to procure an additional tool for cleaning the windows, to be used in conjunction with a microfiber cloth. A variety of long-armed scrubbers can be found at auto stores for just a few dollars and will work with most microfiber cloths – simply attach the cloth to the scrubber in order to reach out of place parts of the glass. This works well for both the interior corners of the vehicle and those hard to reach places near the middle of the outside portion of the windshield.
DO Clean in the Shade
On warm, sunny days, you may feel motivated to get outside and clean your auto glass. While it’s never a bad idea to clean your auto glass, you do want to avoid doing so in direct sunlight. Whether your cleaner has ammonia in it or not, the cleaning process will not go as planned if you try to clean while the sun’s rays are making direct contact with your vehicle. This can cause the cleaner to dry prematurely – before you get a chance to properly remove it from the windows – which will leave residue, streaking and spots. This can easily be solved by cleaning your windows in the shade, in the garage or under an outdoor structure with a cover/roof.
Your auto glass exists to protect you, so it only makes sense that you protect it. Traditional cleaning cloths can leave scratches on the glass and cause residue to build up easily. Ammonia as a cleaner may be acceptable in outdoor conditions and on windows without tint, but is a bad idea otherwise. To get the most mileage out of your windshield and ensure pristine, flawless visibility, you’ll want to invest in a microfiber cloth (and potentially a scrubbing tool along with it) and a professional cleaner that breaks down mineral deposits without the use of ammonia.