—Obviously, I’m not saying installation technicians are con artists, but it is good to know about these auto windshield repair scams when you need a rock chip repaired.
I recently read a blog post about someone who got a bullseye from a rock flying up off the road. The person decided to try a Do-It-Yourself kit, but then chickened out. Instead, he called a nationally known auto glass company to come and fix his windshield. I guess he was nervous about them, which is why he posted to this forum looking for feedback.
The Low-Down Dirty Story
I hear that a lot, but that is not what prompted me to write this article. What struck me was one of the other comments…
This guy called the same nationally known company to fix a rock chip. First, the tech looked at the windshield then told the customer the repair was not going to look good and the chip was probably not repairable. Then he said “8 out of 10” rock chips can’t be repaired!
The tech charged the customer $90 just to try. The customer was promised if he wasn’t happy with the results, he could get a new windshield and the $90 would go toward his deductible.
Sure enough, the results were not good.
Uncovering Windshield Repair Scams
Here’s why what I read in that forum post ticked me off…there were several scams going on there!
Disclaimer: Not all windshield installation companies use dishonest tactics. But it is good to be aware of these scams.
REPAIR SCAM #1 – $90 for Windshield Chip Repair?
$90 is much higher than the going rate in Dallas (and most areas around the country) for rock chip repair.
So what’s the scam?
The price is nearly as high as many insurance deductibles! I can’t prove it, but it seems that people would throw down the extra money to get a new windshield rather than pay $90 for a repair they have been told isn’t going to look too great.
REPAIR SCAM #2 – 8 out of 10 Rock Chips can’t be Repaired?
I rarely come across rock chips that cannot be repaired. Not only do I fix them, but I consistently get a significant improvement in appearance…like 85-95%.
The exception is an unusually large bullseye or combination break with the glass all crushed at the impact point. These types of breaks do happen, but not 8 out of 10 times.
REPAIR SCAM #3 – Conflict of Interest?
Insurance companies pay a much higher rate for windshield replacement. So the installation technician wants to up-sell you.
So here is how the the scam works. The installation tech gets a customer to refuse a repair by:
- Charging a high price
- Promising poor results
- Delivering poor results
The goal is to get the customer to either change his mind right away, or after he sees the low quality results, opt for a replacement.
This is a bad deal for the customer who now has to pay the deductible for a new windshield. Not only that, a claim for windshield replacement may raise their rates.
Insurance claims for windshield repair typically cost nothing out-of-pocket. In Texas, they are no-fault claims so they do not raise your rates.
How to Protect Yourself from Scams
Here is how to protect yourself from auto windshield repair scams:
- If you DO need a windshield replacement, get a referral from someone
you trust or ask your repair technician to recommend a qualified company.
- If you have a rock chip, find a “repair only” technician to fix your windshield.
Experienced, professional technicians produce quality repairs that are guaranteed not to spread. It is in their best interest to do an excellent job; their livelihood depends on it.
Do you have questions about auto windshield repair? Call me at . I will be happy to answer all of your questions!
Stories from Other Visitors
at the bottom of this page.
Click below to read about replacement scams. These are stories submitted by other visitors to this page…Do you have a story to share? Submit it in the comments below and I’ll make a new scam page with it.
I stopped at a gas station and was approached by a blue uniformed man who say he would wash my windshield for free. being a dumb teenager I said sure, what’…
I was fed the same story by a gentlemen at a gas station, only I really didn’t want a repair. The only few cracks on my windshield had been there for years …
This is an interesting news story about a replacement company who has been committing fraud against insurance companies and ripping off their customers!…
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