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Is the Rock Chip in my Windshield Repairable?

by Mark Huckle, Certified Repair Tech

If you get a rock chip on your windshield, you need to figure out if the break is repairable or not so when you call an auto glass shop you ask for the right service. You can save a lot of money by getting the windshield repaired instead of replaced.

Large rock chip with multiple cracs and crushed glass in the center

This large rock chip has crushed glass in the center. It is not repairable.

The first step in figuring out if a rock chip can be repaired is to use a dry cloth and lightly rub the area to see if the rock chip comes off! Believe it or not, I get called out to fix 'rock chips' that are nothing more than dirt stuck to the windshield. To avoid a service call, check that the glass is actually cracked.

Next, look at the size including the cracks that extend from the impact point. Is the break the size of a dime, nickle, or quarter? If so, it can be repaired. In other words, if it is a small break with cracks extending from it and the whole thing is less than 1.25 inches, it IS repairable.

Large bullseyes (larger than a 50-cent piece) are not repairable. If the break is the right size but the glass is completely crushed in the center, it is not repairable. This often happens when large hail causes windshield damage. There is no way to put crushed glass back together.

Can an Old Windshield Repair be Fixed Again?

I am often asked to repair rock chips that have already been repaired. Unfortunately, bullseyes and cracks that have already been injected with resin cannot be repaired again. I have been successful fixing old repairs in a few instances, but I cannot guarantee it. There is always the risk that the entire repair will fail.

If the old repair has a new crack is coming out if it, I can drill into the new crack and fill it. If this happens, call me at right away before the crack spreads across the windshield.

If you are unhappy with the previous repair because it doesn't look very good, you are better off leaving it alone. For your safety, if the bad repair distracts you while driving, you should get a new windshield.

Still not sure whether you should get your windshield repaired or replaced? Read more here.

Mark Huckle is a nationally certified windshield repair technician located in Irving, Texas. Read more...

Credits: photo © Thomas Acop