When to Replace a Broken Windshield

Windshield CrackRecently I was coming back from the ski hill and got a rock chip in my windshield that has started to crack and spider. I know there is a violation ticket that may be written for a cracked windshield. I plan on getting it changed in the spring after the roads are swept because I don't really want to spend $200 dollars to have a windshield changed on the chance it may get hit with another rock.

This reader is correct, there are a number of ways for police to deal with a broken windshield ranging from a notice and order to repair to a ticket or even an order removing the vehicle from the roadway if the damage is serious enough. Since about 80% of the information that you need comes from your eyes, being able to see properly is a must.

So, when is a windshield damaged sufficiently to require replacement? There are regulations that describe damage that is considered to be vision obstructing. Conditions include a crack over 300 mm long in any part, more than 2 cracks over 150 mm long in any one piece of glass, stone or shot injuries more than 40 mm in diameter, two or more stone or shot injuries over 20 mm in diameter in any one piece of glass and broken glass showing sharp edge.

I understand the balance of risk to the budget against the risk of replacing the windshield only to have it damaged again. Being able to see is important but you must also take into account that the glass is a structural component of the vehicle these days and also plays a part in body integrity and proper air bag deployment. Failing to replace it when needed could have significant consequences. 

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It is extremely unlikely you will get nailed for having a cracked windshield. Just visit a shopping centre and look for a pickup, SUV, or a junk car.  Enforcement is once again an issue. Unless you go through a Police Road Block or Seatbelt/Cell phone check it is not very likely there will be any issue. If the police can't nab aggressive drivers and those who always drive way above the posted speed limit.

However, for me, I can't stand a cracked windshield. I have one chip near the edge of the windshield and the glass repair shop put some liquid magic on it to help prevent it from getting worse.  Once it starts to spider (and it will), I'll have to get a new windshield. 

Some glass and autobody shops (usually the latter) can get you a generic windshield that fits your car (depends on your car) for less than the cost of your deductable, so you will have to look around. For me though, the actual OEM replacement cost is around $700. So I will have to make a windshield replacement claim.

Ethically, I have a problem with paying the deductable since in my case, it was a truck that released a rock from his tire that caused the chip in my windshield. ICBC should go after the person or driver that caused this and have THEM pay my deductable, just like they should go after the builder of the Port Mann Bridge for not de-icing the cable and the bridge. 

It is Extreamly Likely you WILL get Nailed,not just for Cracked but also for chip(s) when you drive a commecial vehicle over 5500kgs. Scales and spot checks makes sure of that,,and trust me the one thing the office is checking forsure as you roll through is your windshield. No Disagreeing from me there either,seeing is the most important part of moving.

I am just having a tough time trying to figure out how to blame someone elses tire for throwing up a rock,that I drove into. If I was,nt driving,that rock that was thrown up by that tire, would have just gone about it,s buisness and come to a rest somewhere,Instead of being  Rudely Interupted by MY WINDSHIELD,,,Poor rock,,Or should all other vehicles on the road be required to not let thier tires throw rocks up when I am on the road driving?