You may have noticed that windshields sometimes crack on the inside even if there has been no impact. What causes this to happen? How to prevent it? Follow along to discover the answer.
What Causes a Windshield To Crack on the Inside?
One of the mysteries most drivers encounter at one point or another is a windshield with a crack on the inside. Most people are left scratching their heads trying to remember when they hit the windshield accidentally. The truth is that this type of crack is usually caused by sudden changes in temperature or pressure.
When a windshield cracks on the inside, it’s usually the result of a stress fracture. Stress fractures occur when there is a radical and sudden change in temperature or pressure inside your car.
How Stress Fractures Happen
Imagine, for example, that it’s a really hot summer day and you left your car outside because no indoor parking was available — not even a spot under the shade of a tree.
Naturally, the interior of your car will get really hot, including your windshield. Like other substances, glass expands when exposed to heat. So a sweltering summer day will cause your windshield to expand, even if you don’t notice the expansion because it happens at an almost microscopic level.
And yet, the glass on your windshield expands. And what is the first thing you do as soon as you enter a really hot car? You blast the AC system on, creating the perfect conditions for a stress fracture.
A few days later, you notice that your windshield is cracked on the inside and try to figure out what happened, but chances are good that you’ll never think of that hot day where you turned on your AC so suddenly.
Stress fractures also occur when the temperature change is from really cold to really hot. This happens, for example, during winter if you defrost your windshield using hot water.
How to Avoid Stress Fractures
The best way to avoid stress cracks is to ensure that any temperature change occurs gradually.
So, for example, if your car is really hot, roll down the windows and allow the vehicle to cool down before turning on the air conditioning at a moderate temperature.
Vibrations can also contribute to stress cracks. Drive safely over potholes and avoid bumpy roads in general,
In addition to temperature changes and vibrations, stress cracks can also occur due to the age of the glass. If your windshield is really old, stress fractures may start appearing at some point, but this is normal, and there’s not much you can do to avoid fractures in this situation.
For more tips on how to keep your windshield in mint condition, check out our previous blog, “4 Tips To Protect Your Windshield.”
Inland Empire Autobody & Paint: The Best in Southern California
At Inland Empire Autobody & Paint Inc., we are a family-owned business specializing in collision repair, windshield care, and custom paint jobs. We have locations in Riverside and Moreno Valley, California.