Is it possible to remove a chip from the windshield and what is needed for this?
The windshield is more susceptible to mechanical stress than others. As a result of hitting small stones, damage in the form of chips appears on it. This article discusses how to repair windshield chips and what is needed to remove them.
Relevance and features
It should be borne in mind that in many cases it is possible to repair minor damage to the windshield only with your own hands. This is due to the fact that workshops and car services usually do not undertake the repair of single defects of this kind. Instead, they suggest replacing the windshield. Naturally, repairing chips with your own hands is much cheaper.
Chips are small indentations formed on the surface of the glass as a result of small stones or gravel. That is, they consist of a broken fragment and a recess remaining in its place.
Despite the fact that defects of this type have little effect on visibility, their elimination should be done immediately. This is due to the fact that they weaken the glass, thus provoking the formation of cracks. They usually appear in several directions around the cleft. The probability of crack formation is highest in cold conditions. Chips are much easier to fix than cracks.
As mentioned, repairing a chip should begin immediately after its appearance. If this defect cannot be repaired immediately, measures should be taken to prevent further glass breakage. So, first of all, you need to seal the damaged area of the glass surface with adhesive tape. This will greatly simplify the repair and allow you to make it better, preventing the ingress of water, dust and foreign particles. Moreover, in the warm season, it is advisable to put paper under the adhesive tape in order to prevent the glue from getting into the defect from it.
During the cold period, the interior heating should be removed from the damaged windshield. In addition, it is recommended to warm up the interior gradually, not immediately turning on the heating at full power. The same applies to the cooling of the interior during the warm period. That is, you should not direct the air ducts to the damaged glass and immediately turn on the cooling to the maximum level. Before warming up the interior in winter, you need to clean the windows from snow and ice. Windshield wipers also need to be cleared of snow and ice before use.
It is unacceptable to use icy wipers, and in order to avoid their freezing to the glass, before a long parking in the winter, these parts should be bent away from it.
Old windshield wipers that make noise when rubbing against the glass need to be replaced. In addition, it is undesirable to wash damaged glass with chemical detergents, since their entry into the crack can also affect the quality of the repair. Cleaning is recommended with a soft cloth. Finally, when operating a car with a damaged windshield, it must be taken into account that vibrations and shocks can lead to the growth of the defect, so you should move carefully.
The essence of glass repair is repairing damage. At the same time, defects are made less noticeable and the strength of the glass is restored. The elimination of chips consists in filling the recess with a special substance. For work use an injector. The specialized substance used to fill the chips is a polymer with the same optical properties, including the refractive index of light, as glass. It reliably adheres to the internal cleavage cavities as a result of hardening under the influence of ultraviolet rays.
After that, the glass is polished, and it acquires its original form. The strength of the material as a result of such repairs is restored by 87-97%. However, it should be borne in mind that only minor defects can be repaired using this technology.
To carry out the repair in question, professional kits are usually used, including the following tools and materials:
- ultraviolet lamp;
- brush with hard bristles;
- translucent plates or film;
- brush for cleaning from the inside;
- spare blades for cleaning glass;
- vacuum pump and connecting hose with a nozzle for it;
- assembly platform with an injector;
- polymers of medium and low fluidity.
It should be borne in mind that the composition of the components of the various kits differ. It is possible to purchase these materials and tools separately, but it is much more difficult to do so than to get them all in a set.
It should be noted that repairing chips is very easy to implement, and therefore it is recommended to do it immediately after the appearance of a defect, since cracks, the formation of which is possible in case of delay, are much more difficult to repair. In addition, in the case of the immediate start of restoration work, the defect will not have time to clog with dust, and you will not have to spend time and effort on cleaning it.
However, in any case, before you start removing chips on the windshield, you need to clean out all the remaining glass particles from the recess, as well as dust that has accumulated, using a blade or scrubber. This is because the presence of any foreign particles will affect the quality of the repair. First you need to wash all the glass.
Before starting work, you need to make sure that the glass and especially the recesses are completely dry, as moisture accumulates there.
Then, using an injector, the defect is filled with a polymer composition. The principle of operation of this device is based on the creation of a vacuum due to the movement of the piston. The injector is also called an applicator. To use it, you must first fix it over the defect. First, the suction cups are fixed around it, and then centered. Further along the thread, the applicator tube is twisted tightly, but manually.
It is necessary to make sure that the fixture is exactly positioned over the defect. This is due to the fact that the quality of repair is determined primarily by this factor. The check should be made from the passenger compartment, as it is better seen from the inside. The rubber end of the tube should be positioned exactly over the chip. Otherwise, the applicator must be moved.
Next, the applicator is filled with polymer glue. In this case, you need to determine its quantity. The easiest way is to follow the instructions, however, it should be borne in mind that in some cases 2 times more substance is required than indicated. You also need to remember that in any case, the glue should not be too much or not enough. Therefore, usually use 2 times more polymer than indicated in the instructions. Too much glue will leave residue and slow down drying.
Immediately after filling the applicator with glue, insert the piston into it and fully tighten it. It creates pressure to fill the damage with substance. After a couple of minutes, the piston is loosened to release air, and then tightened again. This technology makes it possible to fill the defect with a homogeneous polymer composition in a few minutes.
After filling the defect, the bridge with suction cups is dismantled, and the damaged area is covered with a finishing film until it dries. It is advisable to secure it with tape. Glue protruding above the glass surface is driven to the edges of the film with a blade. However, in this case, it is impossible to squeeze out all the substance so that a recess remains at the site of the defect. After the glue has dried, that is, after about 10 minutes, the film is removed.