What Causes Windshield Scratch And How to Fix It
If there is a competition to see which car part is the most important one, the vote will surely be in the windshield favor. Not only is it the eye of the driver, it also protects drivers and passengers from all incoming objectives. Unfortunately, having a scratch on the windshield of your vehicle is very dangerous. Not to mention, it is annoying since it compromises the safety of the passengers as well as blocks the visibility of the driver. And you know which part is the worst? The answer is that the windshield is also a commonplace to get scratches. So in order to fix this issue, car owners should know the issues, as well as the way to fix it. Don’t worry, we got all of them covered.
What Made the Windshield?
In order to fix the windshield, you need to know the windshield like the back of your hand. Laminated glass is the main factor creating the windshields. This element offers the highest degree of protection and safety against accidents as well as injuries.Take a look at the laminated glass structure, we can see why. There are three layers in the laminated glass, two sheets of glass and a layer of vinyl in the middle. They are all combined together under pressure and high heat in the autoclave, also known as a specialised oven.
Thanks to this structure, whenever these objectives damage the windshield, only the outer layer sustains damage and creates scratches. And for that reason, car owners can easily fix these scratches without the need of replacing the whole car windshield.
The Causes of Scratches Windshield
Alright, we know what are the factors making the windshield, it is time to know what causes scratches on the windshield. Honestly, there are various reasons that might cause damage to the car windshield.
The first factor is surely the road debris. Rocks, pebbles,… they can all cause scratches and damage the windshield. These road debris are from the vehicle in front of you. To be more specific, when you are on the road, the car in front will accidentally trap rocks on the road directly to your windshield.
Damaged Ice Scrapers
The next reason is the ice scrapers. You might not have this problem if you are living in hot countries. However, if you are from a snowy, cold nation, it is essential to remove ice from the windows and windshield of the car once for a while. However, this action has consequences. With the ice scrapers, you can protect the windshield. Yet if they are damaged and old, they might be the reason for the scratches.
Defective Wiper Blades
Another cause of scratches is the defective wiper blades. With neglect and old wiper blades, we can expect the windshield to be damaged and scratched in time. This happens a lot when the glass is dry or when there is a small thing trapped under the blades like a stone or a pebble.
Last but not least, the lack of cleaning or improper cleaning is also a problem. A rough cloth, for example, can scratch the windshields when you clean it. For that reason, you need to have a cotton cloth or soft microfiber to both clean and protect the glass.
How to Fix the Scratches Windshield
No matter what solutions you are planning to use, you need to determine what type of scratch is that. There are mainly two types of scratch: a deep one or a surface scratch.
A shallow surface scratch is a bit less scary and car owners can fix it. On the other hand, a deep scratch will continue to be deeper and deeper over time. Eventually, you will need to replace a new car windshield. This problem is quite serious and you must come to the mechanics store for help.
So before you start fixing the scratch, it is important to clean the windshield with warm water and soap fist. This should not be done if there is a risk of expanding scratch. If you found the scratch, remember to mark the area with dry-erase markers on the undamaged side.
The Equipment to Fix the Scratch
Understanding the type of scratch, car owners will need a few tools in order to repair the windshield crack. Each equipment has their own way of fixing car scratches. They are:
Glass Repair Kit
The first thing that can help with this issue is of course the glass repair kit. Car owners can easily buy this at a local automotive store or order online. If you have a normal to narrow scratch, this might be the right way to fix it.
The first step is to apply the rubbing compound to the scratch. This compound can easily be found from the kit. In order to do the work, this rubbing compound contains cerium oxide, which can seal the scratch chemically and stop it from growing. To be more precise, it forms a cerium-oxygen-glass compound. This element is even softer than glass and has the ability to bond the scratch together. After that, you only need to wait and let the compound dry for around 30 to 45 minutes. The last step is to clean the area. And remember, only clean with a soft cloth.
Buffing Machine with Water Pump
The second way to fix scratches on the windshield is to use a buffing machine with a water pump. The aim of using it is to level out the area around the damaged area. This is a great way to deal with minor and small scratches. But first, you need to cover the car’s body with rags or plastic sheets. Then, you need to make a dam by layers of duct tape on the windshield in order to use the water pump effectively. Stick one strip of duct tape vertically on the surface, then stick another piece to its sticky side. Repeat it again but in the horizontal way. When we finish the duck tape step, it is time to pump the distilled water and buff the area till the damage area is unseen. The key point in this is to be patient. You do not want to rush it by using too much pressure. After that, the last step is to clean up the residue and remove the coverings.
Acrylic Scratch Remover
The next solution is to use acrylic scratch remover, which can easily be found in any local car parts store. This tool is one of the most common ways to fix small scratches. Firstly, you need to apply the remover on the glass. A cotton cloth is the best tool to do that. Secondly, car owners must rub the cloth over the scratch for around 40 seconds to 1 minute. Thirdly, the remover needs to be sat for half an hour, so let’s be patient and wait. Fourthly, car owners can clean the glass with a soft cloth. And lastly, you can now buff out any remaining scratches or damage. Remember to do that gently to avoid creating more scratches.
Clear Nail Polish
The next solution is to use the clear nail polish. It is available in every shop related to cars. However, this solution can only work with the shallowest scratches. Car owners need to apply a layer of the nail polish on the scratch, clean off the excess then let it dry. When the nail polish dries, it hardens and can fix all minor scratches.
Another way to fix the small crack is to use the non-gel toothpaste. The toothpaste is like a grinding paste that has the ability to take away a small amount of glass around the scratch. This will level the entirety of the damaged area. All car owners need is to dry the glass with a lint-free cloth, then apply the toothpaste. Remember to use the soft cloth to do the task, you don’t want to create more scratches in the process. After that, we need to rub the cloth over the spot in a circular motion. Last step, drivers can use a damp cloth to wipe the toothpaste away. Another thing to keep in mind is to dry the area with the lint-free cloth again.
Glass Scrub Compound
With stubborn grime and dirt, the glass scrub compound is the right way to deal with it. Not only that, this solution can also be used to repair small suffered scratches on the windshield. Just like the toothpaste, car owners use this to level the glass around the crack in order to hide the scratches. If rubbed on the surface of the windshield for a moment, it could be abrasive.
In order to perform the task, you will apply the compound on a damp microfiber cloth, then rub it on the scratch with circular motion. Car owners need to rub it with even pressure, and spray the area with a little water in between every few rotations. You do not want the area to be dry. Then, repeat the process every day. Around a couple days, the scratches will disappear.
Last but certainly not least, when all the previous steps failed, it is time to ask for professional help. Do not hesitate to call for help, especially if you are unsure about repairing the windshield at home or the damage is too serious. If you have a deep crack, you also need the professional to replace the windshield.