Car insurance covers windshield glass replacement if it is written into the policy. For example, specific windshield coverage may be included with a deductible of $100 – $300. For drivers with comprehensive damage insurance, the repairs may, or may not, be covered. Full glass coverage pays for 100% of damaged windshield costs.

Let’s look at the different scenarios regarding windshield glass replacement and coverage.

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Comprehensive Damage Insurance

Comprehensive car insurance covers you for non-vehicle related incidents. This could be due to weather damage, hitting a deer, vandalism, or perhaps a rock cracking your windshield. Read the small print. Some glass plans cover all windows except the windshield.

If the damaged windshield is covered, you’ll have to compare the price of repair to your deductible. If the deductible is higher, then you should pay for the repair out of pocket. Even if the deductible is lower, but not by much, you still may still want to pay in order to avoid filing a claim.

In most cases, only accident related claims affect your insurance rates. But any claim you file could potentially impact your future insurance premiums. If you’re not sure, ask before you file.

Specific Windshield Coverage

This coverage can be independent of other parts of your car insurance plan. It may even be purchased as an add-on. This type of coverage may allow you to pay a lower deductible specifically for glass repair.

Free Repair

Believe it or not, some insurance plans offer free repair. This usually is only for minor repairs, such as chips, that don’t require total windshield replacement. Glass repair shops can fix small cracks and chips without removing the original glass. Even cracks up to six inches in length can be repaired easily.

Full Glass Coverage

Another add-on option, full glass coverage, pays 100% for the repair or replacement of a damaged windshield. These special plans do not have any deductible, but they do increase the amount of your monthly insurance premium. This may be an attractive option for vehicles with expensive windshield repair costs.

How Much Does Windshield Replacement Cost?

Obviously, windshield replacement cost varies according to the extent of damage and the specific car model. A small chip may only cost $25 to repair. Complete windshield replacement costs start at $275 and can go up to $500 or more for luxury models.

Get It Fixed Sooner Than Later

If you have a damaged windshield, get it fixed as soon as possible. If the damage is minor, it may be less expensive to repair. But if you wait too long, cracks can grow and eventually require full glass replacement.

In some states you could be fined for driving with a cracked windshield. But, most importantly, a cracked windshield is weaker and may be dangerous if another object strikes the glass.

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Published in CARCHEX Auto Insurance Resources by CARCHEX on February 26, 2016