Chips occur in your windshield when a pebble or other small item hits your windshield without smashing through it. You may not even notice a small chip in your windshield if it isn't in your line of sight. If you are driving down the road and you hear an impact on your windshield, pull over if you are concerned that your windshield has been damaged. Chips should be repaired to avoid dirt getting into the area and making the damage harder to repair.

When You Ignore a Chip

If you let a chip sit in your windshield for too long, dirt is going to settle into the chip. Even your windshield washer fluid can get into the chip and cause it to become discolored. When there is debris in the chip and it gets repaired, it is not going to look as flawless as it would if you got the chip repaired right away because the dirt will still be easy to see. For a clean look, get your windshield damage repaired within a couple of days.

Chips Can Crack

Windshield chips are often small, but they can grow into a large problem. If the chip is deep enough, eventually the chip is going to crack. You may discover a spider-like pattern of small cracks, or you might see a long crack beginning to grow across your windshield. Cracks are harder to repair and often require a complete windshield replacement. If you take care of the chip early, you can save yourself some money in repair costs.

Cracks Too Close to the Edge

When a windshield crack becomes too wide or spreads to the outer edge of your windshield, a replacement is often necessary. A long crack ruins the structural integrity of your windshield and makes it highly susceptible to shattering after even the smallest of impacts. When you have too many cracks or chips in your windshield, you won't be able to pass an inspection either.

Avoiding Windshield Chips

While you can't prevent every minor accident from happening, you can use some caution when you are driving. Avoid driving closely behind dump trucks or other large vehicles, which are more likely to cause pebbles to fly into the air. Pay attention to the road conditions. If there is loose gravel, drive a bit slower and keep your distance from any car in front of you. If your windshield chips, get your windshield serviced right away to avoid bigger problems.

Contact an auto glass company that offers windshield services to learn more.