If you drive a semi or diesel and you have damaged windshield, you are likely considering semi and diesel windshield replacement or repair.  You may be wondering whether you can get by with a repair or whether you need the full replacement, which, let’s be honest, is expensive enough that you want to know whether it is necessary.  So, let’s look at the factors around it.

Semi and diesel windshield replacement is, in many ways, just like automobile windshield replacement: The question always comes down to safety.

First, let’s look at the facts around windshield cracks and chips.  Did you know that up to 70% of windshield cracks are in the edge area, the weakest area of the windshield?  And that area nearly always goes from a chip to a crack immediately.  If you get a chip in the middle of your windshield, it usually stays a chip for a while, but not on the edge.

You can easily fix any chip that is smaller than a quarter in size, so look at the size before you decide what to do.

If you do get a crack, those are fixable under a certain size as well. If you inspect the windshield a lot, you will more quickly find those cracks that are on the edge, small, and fixable. They aren’t in the main viewing area of your glass, so you have to look for them to see them.

If the crack is under six inches—which around 10% are—then you can usually fix it.

Why does fixing them immediately make a difference? Well, the Auto Safely Glass Council says that in an accident, the windshield is a huge part of your safety—it actually helps support the vehicle’s frame.  Up to 45% of safety in the vehicle’s cabin comes from the windshield in a front-end collision, and up to 60% when the accident is a rollover.