Insurance companies have a vested interest in having you repair your windshield versus having you replace it. If everyone with a low deductible claimed a new windshield every time they got a new rock chip, it would cost the insurance companies a fortune. Most insurance companies cover the cost of windshield repair because they want you to have your windshield repaired and not replaced. To get you to opt for the repair, they tell you that damage up to the size of a dollar bill can be repaired. They also tell vehicle owners that the final result is almost invisible. This couldn’t be more untrue and not only is it a disservice to provide inaccurate information, it also makes the windshield technician’s job that much more difficult because he/she constantly comes up against customers who are expecting the final result to be a brand new looking windshield.
I tell customers to expect a 100% structurally restored windshield and the cosmetic result to be about 80% better than what they are currently seeing. There is no way to put fractured glass 100% back together cosmetically. Even when the repair is almost undetectable, a trained eye can always spot where the damage was, especially when looking at it from the inside of the vehicle. From the inside look out, you are looking through a light source, so the fine fracture in the windshield is illuminated and therefore more visible.
Vehicle owners can help to ensure the best looking repair by having the damage repaired as soon after it occurs as is possible. I often see customers who are asking me to repair damage that has been there sometimes for years. Some of them are even critical of the results, occasionally commenting that they didn’t expect to see any remnant of the damage once it was repaired. Jokingly I tell customers that I am an expert rock chip repair technician, not a magician.
When a rock chip occurs, cover it immediately with a small piece of clear packing tape and call to schedule an appointment as soon as possible. This will help to ensure the best looking repair possible.