Caring For Your New Windshield

Posted on: 11 October 2016

If you need to get your windshield replaced for the first time, you're in luck; it's a relatively fast procedure that can have you driving your car again later the same day. But you have to take proper care of the windshield, too, otherwise all the work can be for naught. One of the substances used to hold the windshield in place is an adhesive, and how you treat the windshield in the first couple of days is the key to having a strong new windshield, or having to go back to get another one.

Allow for Curing Time

Once the windshield's in, your car will look ready to go. However, the adhesive needs time to cure, or dry properly and completely. It's a similar situation to getting a tooth filling; the material dries quickly, but then it needs additional time to really set and strengthen, which is why you don't chew anything hard with the newly filled tooth for a while. With windshields, you don't need to wait that long for curing to take place -- maybe an hour or a little more -- but you must wait for it to cure before driving off. Otherwise, the pressure from the wind as you drive can shift the windshield a little and weaken it.

Drive Very Carefully

The initial curing that allows you to drive doesn't take long. However, the urethane used to help keep the windshield in place can take several additional hours to really grab onto the windshield and keep it in place if you get into an accident. So when you leave the repair shop, drive very carefully -- no distractions, no speeding, no drifting into that mental netherworld where you drive but aren't really paying attention. If your car experiences a strong impact, the windshield could fall out.

Stasis for the First Day or So

Once the windshield has cured and you can drive the car, you should not do anything else to the windshield for at least a day and hopefully more. No car washes, no leaving the car out in a torrential downpour, no removing of any tape left by the installers, nothing. This lack of moisture and lack of movement will help the adhesive become stronger and stronger.

Note, though, that the whole replacement-curing-strengthening-leaving-alone process doesn't take that many days. So it may seem restrictive for the first couple of days, but that's it. The car will be ready for your regular driving habits and needs after that. It's best to talk to the individual shop, such as Express Glass Inc., where you're getting the new windshield installed and find out their specific timelines for after-replacement care.