Does Auto Insurance Cover Windshield Replacement?

Being involved in an auto accident that damages your windshield can be scary and expensive. Unlike other car damages, such as a fender-bender, you can’t drive your car until you fix it. Here’s the information you need about auto insurance and windshield replacement.
By Brittany R.
Updated Mar 16, 2021
windshield replacement
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Being involved in an auto accident that damages your windshield can be scary and expensive. Unlike other car damages, such as a fender-bender, you can’t drive your car until you fix it. Here’s the information you need about auto insurance and windshield replacement.

What Happens If You Need a Windshield Replacement?

Windshield Repair

There is a difference between windshield repair and windshield replacement. A chipped windshield is sometimes not enough significant damage to require a full replacement. Chips in windshields that are 3/8-inch or small are worthy of a simple repair. Windshield repair is affordable, convenient, and environmentally responsible.

Windshield Replacement

When one or multiple cracks begin spreading across your windshield, the option for repairing is no longer available. Numerous cracks in your windshield require a windshield replacement. Replacing your windshield increases structural safety, improves visibility and aesthetics.

Caring for Your Windshield After Replacement

Driving After Replacing Your Windshield

Once you replace your windshield, it’s important to wait until the adhesive dries before driving. Windshield adhesive can take one hour to 24-hours to dry.

Washing Your Car

If you need to wash your car, hand-washing it is best. Avoid taking your car through a car wash for at least 24 hours to ensure you don’t compromise your windshield adhesive.

Caution with Air Pressure

Adhesive leaks can become a problem due to air pressure. To prevent these leaks, make sure you keep your windows rolled down one to two inches for the first 24-hours after replacing your windshield.

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How Much Does Windshield Replacement Cost?

The cost of windshield replacement varies from company to company, but the average cost of a windshield replacement is $350. The total cost to replace your windshield will depend on the amount of damage the windshield sustains. For example, one chip in your windshield can cost $135. Having multiple chips or cracks in the windshield will be more expensive to repair. Keep in mind your car has two windshields, a front, and rear windshield. Most companies charge the same price to repair or replace a front or rear windshield.

Other Determining Factors of the Cost of Windshield Replacement

The cost to replace a windshield also varies from car to car. Other factors that determine the cost of windshield replacement include:

  • The quality of the windshield wipers

  • Type of damage the windshield has

  • Make, year, and model of your vehicle

  • Type of glass you use to replace the windshield

  • Special windshield features, such as sensors

  • You require original equipment manufacturer glass for your windshield

Does Auto Insurance Cover Windshield Replacement?

There are situations when your car insurance will and will not cover a windshield replacement.

When Do Auto Insurance Companies Cover Windshield Replacement?

Your auto insurance will cover a windshield replacement when the damages your car sustains result from a collision caused by another driver. In this situation, windshield replacement is not the only part of your vehicle that requires repairs or replacements. Once you file a claim for the property damage from the other car owner’s insurance, your insurance covers the expense for repairs and replacements.

If you require windshield replacement, but it’s not due to a collision with another car, your insurance will cover the replacement cost if you have comprehensive coverage. Comprehensive insurance covers most situations, such as windshield damage due to tree branches, pebbles, or vandalism.

When Do Auto Insurance Companies Not Cover Windshield Repair?

 Without comprehensive coverage, your car insurance does not cover windshield replacement. Suppose your windshield does not sustain extensive damage, such as damages that compromise the driver’s line of sight. In that case, windshield replacement may not be immediately necessary, giving you time to save money for later repair or replacement if you wish. If you would like to obtain comprehensive coverage, you can get a quote here.

What Is the Process of Submitting an Insurance Claim to Replace a Windshield?

Review Your Car Insurance Coverage

Double-check your auto policy to ensure you have coverage for repairs. Again, if you have comprehensive insurance, you have adequate coverage for windshield replacement at no cost to you. Comprehensive insurance is optional unless you are financing a car. Suppose you do not carry a zero-deductible policy at the time you need a windshield replacement. In this situation, you will have to pay the policy deductible before your insurance company replaces your windshield.

File a Claim

You need to file a claim for your insurance to cover a windshield replacement. After an incident occurs, contact your insurance agency and follow their directions. There will be multiple documentation forms relating to the accident you will need to provide for the insurance agent. Many insurance companies allow you to provide documentation and file a claim by phone call, mobile app, in person, or online. For future reference, make sure you have:

  • The name of your insurance company

  • Your car insurance policy number

  • Your car’s make, model, and year

  • The date of the incident

  • Photos that show the damages of your car sustained

Contact the Repair Shop

In most situations, your insurance company has specific repair shops they do business with, which means you can choose from the available shops to repair your windshield. If your auto insurance company allows you to select any repair shop, call around to different local repair shops and tell them your situation.

Submit the Receipt

Once the auto repair shop makes the necessary repairs, send your name, phone number, and policy number to your insurance company. You should also include the date the incident took place. If you have a police report, make a copy of it and send it to your insurance company.

The Importance of Windshield Replacement

Significant cracks and chips in either of your car’s windshield are more than a blemish. Addressing this damage promptly ensures your safety and the safety of other drivers. Auto emergencies seem to occur right before or after payday, so it’s a good idea to set money aside in your rainy-day fund for these types of unexpected expenses, especially if your car insurance policy has a deductible.

Finding the proper insurance policy for your needs can be a frustrating hassle that is often time-consuming. Many drivers are overpaying for car insurance because they have auto coverage they don’t use. It’s best to assess your auto insurance needs to ensure you’re getting what you pay for and not overpaying. Ensure you have everything you need for compliance with auto insurance laws in your state and peace of mind, start here. Obtaining auto insurance doesn’t have to be difficult, especially when you know which type of coverage you need.