Windshields are more than just a way to see out of a vehicle; they actually form 45% of your car's support structure. This is why leaving a crack in the glass unrepaired can significantly decrease the safety of your car during an accident. Fortunately, not every kind of crack requires a windshield replacement. Here are the most common types of windshield cracks and what they mean for your glass.

A Guide to Identifying Windshield Damage

1. Chip

When you're driving behind another vehicle and a small piece of gravel is thrown up by its tire and hits your windshield, you are likely to end up with a chip. A chip is a small, circular gouge in the surface of the glass. This type of damage is easily repaired, but if left unattended, it will often expand into a crack.

2. Chip With Crack

When a chip is not repaired, a crack will form. This crack will remain attached to the original chip and extend out an inch or two beyond it. If repaired promptly, a chip with a crack can be fixed before it grows enough to become a threat to the windshield's structural integrity.

3. Bullseye

Windshield replacement

A bullseye is typically caused by a larger rock or other debris and forms a deeper and wider circular gouge than a chip. This type of damage can usually be repaired, but if the bullseye is particularly wide or deep to the point that the structure of your glass is compromised, a windshield replacement will be necessary.

4. Combination Break

A combination break occurs when an impact instantly produces multiple chips and cracks in one concentrated cluster. Due to the complexity of multiple types of damage in one small area, this type of damage usually cannot be safely repaired.

5. Edge Crack

Edge cracks typically appear on cars that are old and worn. The crack will spontaneously appear about two inches from the edge of your windshield and rapidly extend up to 12 inches in length. These cracks make a windshield much more vulnerable to other damage and should be considered a sign that you need windshield replacement.


If you have a damaged windshield that needs repairing or replacement, come to Precision Collision & Auto Glass. This Frankfort, MI, company has been offering high-quality collision repair and auto body services since 1997. Their experts will handle everything from repairs to your insurance claim, and they'll even give your vehicle free detailing with collision repair. Visit their website or call (231) 352-7948 for a free estimate.