The Top 5 Things You Should Do When Your Windshield is DamagedPosted on Jun 29, 2017
A damaged windshield can really cramp your style when driving. Not only does it mar the perfection of the car you’ve invested so much in, but it also can cause issues with visibility and your field of vision. This limited field of vision can put your ability to drive defensively at risk. That is why it’s important to do the following five things when your windshield is damaged.
1) Find Out the Source of the Damage
If you have comprehensive coverage as part of your auto insurance, chances are that windshield replacements are covered in the case of qualifying damage. For the most part, that includes storms, fires, vandalism, and animal collisions. What this means, if your comprehensive plan includes things like auto glass repairs or replacement, is that the damage to the windshield has to have occurred during a covered event in order for your insurance to pay. That is why it is critical to determine the source of the damage to your windshield and to understand your auto policy.
2) Check Your Auto Insurance Policy to See if Windshield Damage is Covered
The second thing you need to do is determine whether or not your auto insurance policy will cover the damage to your windshield – and if it is worth filing a claim to have the damage repaired. In some instances, the costs of replacing the damaged windshield will not exceed the costs of replacing or repairing the windshield by much, if anything at all. You have to determine whether you wish to file the claim or if it would be better to pay for the repairs or replacement out of pocket.
3) Determine if You are Legally Required to Repair or Replace Your Windshield
Once upon a time, many areas of the United States required windshields to be free of cracks and defects in order to obtain yearly inspection stickers. While many states have moved away from this practice some still have these laws in place. Also, having your vision impaired by cracks or seams in the auto glass of your windshield may increase your liability risk if you are determined to be at fault in an accident and your field of vision may have been affected by a crack.
4) Decide if Your Windshield Can be Repaired Instead of Replaced
Sometimes the damage to your windshield does not require replacement, yet. If left untreated or if you fail to have the damage repaired, the small ding in your windshield can splinter, crack, and spread to become a huge eyesore or impact your ability to see the road and other traffic while driving. If you can repair the damage, it is almost always more cost-effective to do this instead of replacing the windshield. This is also easier on your budget in most cases.
5) My car was leased – Am I required to replace my windshield with one from the dealer?
If you lease your vehicle, you may have a few different concerns. Most lease policies require you to replace your windshield with glass from the original equipment manufacturer rather than using OEE auto glass, or what is considered original equipment equivalent. Most insurance policies, however, will only cover OEE glass, which could leave you responsible for replacing the glass, again, with the OEM glass when you return your leased vehicle.
That is why it is important to understand your policy and make sure you’re getting the right auto insurance policy to meet all your potential needs. If you are leasing your vehicle, discuss that fact with your insurance agent so you can be sure you get a policy that will not only pay for repairs or replacements for your windshield, but that will also cover the costs of the OEM glass your lease requires. The right insurance policy, whatever your needs may be, can make all the difference in the world.
Otterstedt Insurance Agency has a more than 100 years history of working with automobile owners in New Jersey (and beyond) to make sure their car insurance needs are being met while minimizing cost.