July/August  2001

Repair Tech Tips
    helpful hints



Ask the Doctor
by Walt Gorman

Q: All winter I wished for hot weather and then the first hot day came and I cracked two windshields! Help! What am I doing wrong?

A hot windshield is unstable and too much pressure can make a break run. Heat softens the laminate and using excess pressure while injecting the resin can force resin between the glass and the laminate, resulting in “daisying” or “flowering.” You’ll need to adjust for changes in climate.

Q: When is a windshield considered too hot and in need of cooling?

The ideal temperature for a windshield repair is between 40 degrees and 85 degrees Fahrenheit. If the outside temperature is in the mid 80s, the glass definitely needs to be cooled. Closed windows can increase the temperature in the vehicle by another 20 to 30 degrees. The temperature differential between the inner and outer lites makes the glass unstable and likely to crack.

Q: How do you cool a windshield?

You can cool it by having it placed in the shade with all the doors and windows open. A 50-50 solution of water and alcohol can also be used, but be careful not to get any of the solution in the break! Finally, it can be cooled gradually with the air conditioner.

Q: What methods of cooling the glass should be avoided?

Do not apply ice to the glass or spray it with a garden hose. The rapid, drastic change in temperature could easily crack the windshield. In addition, there would be the possibility of getting moisture in the break. 


Walt Gorman is the owner and founder of A-1 Windshield Repair in Seekonk, Mass. He also runs a training school for windshield repair technicians.


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