It's all too common to get cracked windshields from road construction. Once you hear that dreaded pop noise, you know instantly what happened.
Auto glass damage caused by road construction can range from minor inconvenience to a safety hazard, so you must be especially careful when driving around construction sites. Driving slowly and defensively may protect your car from significant damage and help you avoid hefty insurance claims and unnecessary windshield replacement.
So, how does road construction cause auto glass damage, and when is it a big deal?
4 Ways Road Construction Causes Auto Glass Damage
While auto glass replacement may not be avoidable if your car gets damaged from road construction, here are a few things to look out for when driving:
1. Upthrown Gravel from a Utility Vehicle or Truck
Anyone who drives through construction areas knows that chances are there will be a gravel truck there. In most cases, these loads are not secure, and the stones can fly out, leaving your windshield vulnerable to cracks and chips.
2. Kicked Up Rocks from a Vehicle's Heavy Tires
Construction zones notoriously have a lot of loose gravel and dirt on them. Passerby's vehicle's tires will pick these up and can become hazards as they land directly on your windshield, resulting in cracking or worse!
3. Unsecured Equipment, Tools, or Building and Work materials
While companies and commercial drivers can do their best to ensure their loads are secure, there is always a risk if the equipment and work materials are not properly tied down. It doesn't take much force, and the right wind gust can give them just enough velocity to turn a tool or piece of equipment into a projectile, smashing your windshield.
4. Construction Holes and Bumps
When it comes to revamping roadways, the construction crews will need to break down the existing asphalt to lay down the new foundation for the project. This process can leave behind holes, crevices, and bumps or create differences in height between the old pavement and the new, becoming a potential issue for your glass if you hit it with too much force.
In general, watch out for flying objects at a construction site. While these things may not completely shatter your windshield, they will, at the very least, crack, chip, or ding it.
When Do You Need to Get Your Windshield Replaced?
If your windshield, rear window, or side window has been recently damaged by road construction, it may be time to repair or replace it.
The windshield provides around 35-40% of the structural strength of the car's roof, which means you risk your roof falling in on you while driving if it is damaged. Additionally, it protects you when in car accidents as a barrier.
Every tiny bump causes a vibration in the car, slightly damaging your windshield more and more, so small cracks shouldn't be written off, even if they are barely visible. After all, there is no more significant cost to you than injury. Not to be overdramatic, but you are essentially playing with a time bomb.
Realistically, you can go for auto glass repair if there are barely visible cracks or dings in your auto glass that aren't in your direct line of sight or peripheral vision. For more major damage, like visible or heavy cracks, go for complete auto glass replacement.
Be Protected While You Drive
There are several ways to damage your auto glass from road construction, so our top tips for keeping you and your vehicle safer are:
Keep Your Distance from Construction Vehicles
As we discussed, construction vehicles are more likely to have equipment, gravel, or tools, so maintain a safe distance of at least three car lengths to reduce your risk of driving with a chipped or cracked windshield.
Take Your Time Navigating Construction Areas
If you need to drive through a construction zone, always take your time going over holes and bumps and keep an eye out for unattended debris that can damage your vehicle.
Stay Back from Other Drivers
While navigating around standard-sized cars and trucks might feel safer, most drivers are not concerned if they have rocks in their tires. Always use caution when passing and keep at least three seconds of space between your vehicle and theirs, especially if there's poor visibility or unsafe road conditions.
Don't Compromise on Quality!
Quality Counts Auto Glass offers in-person auto glass repair and replacement in Bradenton, FL, and can be contacted at 941-251-7817.
We also provide mobile auto glass repair and replacement in the following service areas: