Rocks, vandals, wild animals, bad weather, and of course, unexpected car accidentsClass are a windshield’s worst nightmare. Even in newer cars that use Smart Glass technology, if a deer runs out in front of you and goes through your windshield, there isn’t much you can do to stop the glass from breaking. What are you supposed to do when a cracked or broken windshield is unavoidable?
There are a few things you should know:
- What does the law in your state say?
- What does your insurance policy say?
- Do you need to replace the windshield?
- How do you get the windshield replaced?
These are just a few of the questions this article will answer. That way, if you do end up with a broken windshield, maybe you can avoid breaking the bank to get it fixed. Let’s start with the law. We don’t want to be a lawbreaker after all.
Texas State Law
What does the law say about broken windshields in the great state of Texas? Actually, in Texas, the state law does not specifically mention anything about cracked windshields. It does, however, say that you should not drive with anything obstructing your field of view. This includes but is not limited to stickers, taps, paper, and other objects that may be on your windshield for any reason. It can also be interpreted to include windshield cracks if they are large enough to obstruct the view of the driver.
That is to say, if you have a large crack on the passenger’s side of the windshield and the driver can still see clearly without any difficulties, the windshield is still considered legal in the state of Texas. The law follows suit to the federal law regarding windshield damage and the need for drivers to have a clear view of the critical area of the windshield. The windshield glass located directly above the steering wheel is considered to be the critical area of the windshield.
A free windshield replacement usually refers to being able to replace the broken or cracked windshield without having to pay a deductible to the insurance company first. This usually depends on your insurance policy, company, and coverage. There are many other things that play into the price you may or may not have to pay to get a free windshield replacement in Texas.
Free windshield replacements in Texas are not actually part of the local law. If you have the minimum required auto insurance policy, a windshield replacement won’t be covered by your insurance. Without insurance, you will be paying anywhere from $100 to $400 to have your broken windshield replaced. If you don’t want to spend that much money, you are going to want to make sure that your insurance policy covers your windshield.
This should be covered under a comprehensive policy but you need to talk to your insurance agent to double check what your policy covers. The comprehensive coverage does cover windshield repairs in Texas but they are still not free. You will have to pay the deductible which is a portion that you pay out of pocket and the insurance company will cover the rest of the cost.
It is possible for you to have a $0 deductible if your insurance company is willing to agree to this but it means your premium will be higher. That is to say, the amount you pay monthly or annually for your insurance policy will be higher. But you won’t have to pay anything out of pocket when you file an insurance claim to get your windshield replaced. This is the only way to get a “free” windshield replacement in Texas though, in the end, you are still paying for it, just not all at once when you need an emergency replacement.
There is a benefit to this if you have an accident with a wild animal or an unforgiving dump truck kicks up a rock and shatters your windshield. If you are short on cash, you can still get it fixed. But you have to make sure you can afford the premiums when they are due. Deciding if this is a good option for you comes down to your opinion and whether or not the insurance company will allow this arrangement.
Once you know the law and your insurance policy, you need to decide if you are going to replace your windshield or not. If you decide to wait, it is a good idea to note the size of all chips and cracks in the windshield. If they begin to spread, you need to replace your windshield for the sake of keeping yourself and your passengers safe. This is because safety concerns for cars involved in car accidents are higher if the car has a cracked windshield.
When you are ready to replace your windshield, you will need to find a place to get the work done. There are many places that can do this for you but you want to get your money’s worth, get the job done right, and get it done quickly. Finding the right place that meets all of your expectations can be difficult. If you are in Houston, you might want to consider All Star Glass for a quote. They replace windshields on most automobile brands including Ford, BMW, Mercedes, Honda, Toyota, and more.
Ready to Get a New Windshield?
There might not be any laws in Texas specifically about driving with a broken windshield, but that doesn’t mean it is safe. There aren’t really any free windshield replacements in Texas, but you can make sure you are covered by a comprehensive insurance policy that allows for free windshield replacement or repair. Contact your auto insurance provider for more information about your policy coverage and if you are covered in the event of a broken windshield.
For more information about windshield replacement services, contact a company near you such as Allstar Glass that specializes in this. They will know more information about specific laws, how to contact the insurance company, and the process required for getting your windshield replaced.