Car parts

Is Windshield Repair Covered by Insurance?

According to, it is possible that your windshield repair service is covered under your auto insurance policy. This is great news for people needing repair of a cracked, chipped or broken windshield. But you need to get these repairs as soon as possible. Report your claim immediately to receive the full benefit of your insurance coverage.

Below, we explore some of the ins and outs of insurance.

What is windshield insurance?

Windshield insurance is coverage typically included with your collision or comprehensive auto insurance policy. These benefits pay to have your windshield repaired or replaced after damage. In some regions, you must buy this insurance outright as separate full glass coverage. In most geographies of North America, your comprehensive or collision coverage enables you to receive windshield repair service or replacement when repairs do not suffice.

There are some key points to remember about your insurance. These points include:

  • Your insurance will not pay for glass damage if you do not have collision, full glass or comprehensive coverage
  • If an auto accident damages your windshield, the at-fault party’s insurance will pay for repair or replacement
  • You need full replacement of the front glass when the damage poses a safety risk
  • The comprehensive deductible is typically waived for glass repairs

Types of Windshield Damage Insurance Covers

Insurance typically covers specific types of windshield damage. This damage includes:

Car Accident Damage

Damage caused by a car accident is covered by the at-fault party’s auto insurance. When someone else is at fault, your windshield repair or replacement is thus the responsibility of that driver’s liability coverage. This means you pay nothing for these repairs or replacement costs.

If you are at fault for a broken windshield, your own collision insurance policy will cover this repair. But because the accident was your fault, you will have to pay your deductible.

Rock Chips, Weather and Vandalism

For other damage not related to an auto accident, your insurance policy’s comprehensive coverage pays for repairs or replacement. But you must elect to carry this coverage when you get your policy. Your auto policy may also have auto glass insurance that does not require you to pay a deductible. Talk to your insurance agent to learn about your coverage and whether you have comprehensive coverage or auto glass coverage for this type of damage.

Minor Windshield Damage Caused by Other Sources

If your windshield damage is minor, such as a chip or small crack, you may not need a glass replacement. Instead, your insurance will likely cover the minor repairs without a deductible. Minor damage does not break into the glass and is smaller in size than a dollar bill. The goal of repair is to restore the glass’ structural integrity.

Windshield Replacement from Other Causes

When your windshield experiences major damage and repairs will not restore its integrity, you need full windshield replacement. Comprehensive insurance typically covers this type of damage and may not require you to pay a deductible.

What to Do If Your Insurance Does Not Pay for Repair or Replacement

In order for your insurance to cover your windshield replacement or repair, you need a policy with collision or comprehensive coverage. With only liability coverage, your vehicle’s damage is your out-of-pocket responsibility unless an at-fault party has caused the damage and has coverage of their own.

Of course, if you intentionally damage your windshield, your insurance will not pay for repair or replacement. With many policies, this includes damage caused by auto accidents for which you were driving under the influence.

Should I repair or replace my windshield?

You do not have to decide whether to repair or replace your windshield, in most cases where insurance is paying. Your auto glass repair technician uses several methods to determine whether to repair or replace the glass. First, they measure the depth and dimensions of the crack, chip or fracture. They also check the driver’s field of vision and how the damage affects visibility. Finally, check the windshield’s integrity and determine whether the remaining glass poses a threat to your safety.

Repairs generally take place for small chips. But major damage typically requires a full windshield replacement. Of course, if you prefer a new windshield when it only needs repairs, you can pay out-of-pocket for the new glass.

It is important to replace the glass when your windshield shows major damage. This major damage includes:

  • Damage greater than the size of a dollar bill
  • Puncture through the windshield glass
  • Multiple previously repaired dings, cracks or chips
  • Damage occurring directly in the driver’s line of sight

3 Points to Remember When Your Windshield Is Damaged

Three points to remember when repairing or replacing a damaged windshield include:

Consider when to file an insurance claim and when it is better to pay out-of-pocket

If your insurance will not save you money on the repairs or replacement, do not file an insurance claim for your damage. It is better to pay for the repairs yourself than to risk increased premiums.

Consider non-OEM glass to replace your OEM windshield

An option for more expensive OEM glass is a non-OEM windshield replacement. OEM simply means that the windshield comes from your auto’s original equipment manufacturer. Non-OEM glass works just as well but comes from a different “aftermarket” maker. Ask for OEM and non-OEM estimates before making your decision when paying the whole price or extra amounts beyond your insurance coverage out-of-pocket. Remember, aftermarket windshields must meet the same safety standards as required of your original part. They are very high quality and you will not notice a difference.

Consider making very minor repairs yourself

With some patience, you can easily make minor repairs to your windshield, such as for small cracks or chips on the passenger’s side of the glass. You can purchase a DIY kit for less than $20 at your local auto parts store. The process only takes about two hours at most and will keep the crack or chip from expanding over time.

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