Auto Service World
News   August 3, 2023   by Isabel Aguirre

A guide to the new world of windshield repair

As vehicle technology has upgraded, so too have the skills, tools and equipment needed for proper repairs in this important area

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Understanding the significance of having the right tools and equipment for windshield repair is absolutely essential for automotive technicians.

The automotive industry has made remarkable strides in recent years, bringing about significant changes in vehicle design and incorporating advanced driver assistance systems (ADAS) and other sensors. Falling behind in this rapidly evolving landscape could seriously affect your business and put customers at risk.

Being empowered with the right knowledge and insights can help you excel in this area. We will explore how tools and equipment changed to achieve high-quality windshield repair and meet the challenges posed by modern vehicles. Key concepts like windshield repair, auto glass, glass removal, resin and more will be explored.

Why is this important?

Windshield repair is part of the entire auto glass maintenance program. The windshield is vital to any vehicle, providing structural integrity and protecting occupants from external elements. It is subject to various hazards, such as road debris, extreme weather conditions and accidents, which can lead to chips, cracks or complete breakage.

Regular maintenance is important as its constant exposure to the elements can cause significant damage to it in the long run.

As they say, an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. In this case, preventive maintenance, such as immediately addressing small cracks and rock chips, is important in ensuring the life of your customers’ auto glass.

ADAS and sensors: A new challenge

To be on top of the windshield replacement, maintenance and removal business, one must be flexible with the constant innovations used by manufacturers in today’s auto glass industry.

With the integration of ADAS and other sensors in modern vehicles, windshield repair has become more complex. These systems rely on sensors — cameras mounted on the windshield to provide critical information for driver assistance features, such as lane departure warnings and automatic emergency braking.

These are all tools that help avoid car accidents; therefore, any repair or replacement work must be carried out with utmost precision to avoid compromising the functionality of these systems. This can only be achieved by making sure you know how to handle the task with the proper skills and tools.

Must-have tools and equipment

You need a comprehensive set of tools and equipment to effectively repair windshields and meet the challenges posed by ADAS-equipped vehicles. Let’s review some key tools and equipment that every automotive service professional should have.

Windshield repair kits Auto glass technicians use windshield repair kits as an all-in-one solution that typically includes a bridge assembly, repair resin, curing lamp and various accessories. These kits are designed to repair small chips and cracks in the windshield, preventing them from spreading further. They are easy to use and offer a cost-effective solution for minor damages.

Some examples include: Delta Kits Infinity 4.1 Windshield Repair System; GlasWeld G3 ProVac Windshield Repair Kit

Glass removal tools — In some cases, windshield damage may require complete replacement rather than repair. Glass removal tools such as cut-out tools and glass removal wires are essential for safely and efficiently removing the old glass. These tools allow you to carefully separate the windshield from the frame without causing any damage to the vehicle.

The examples noted above would be ideal starting points.

Windshield installation tools — When installing a new windshield, you need specialized tools to ensure proper fitment and adherence. These tools include setting tools, sealant applicators and suction cups. Setting tools help position the windshield correctly, while sealant applicators ensure a secure and watertight bond. Suction cups assist in holding the windshield in place during the installation process. Using high-quality caulk, caulking guns, razor blades and other tools should be the go-to choice for professionals.

Some examples include: BTB Auto Glass Cut Out Knife Pro Series; Glass Technology Windshield Removal Kit

Glass and windshield repair resin — The repair resin is a crucial component of windshield repair kits. It is a specially formulated material that fills in the damaged area, restoring the windshield’s structural integrity. High-quality resin is designed to be durable and long-lasting, ensuring a reliable repair.

Some examples include: Equalizer Express Air Powered Caulking Gun; WRD Spider 3 Kit

Auto Glass Removal Tools — In addition to windshield repair, you may encounter other auto glass repair or replacement tasks. Auto glass removal tools, such as extractors and cutters, are necessary for handling these tasks. These tools help you safely remove broken or damaged glass from windows, quarter glass, and other areas of the vehicle.

Some examples include: BTB Auto Glass Cut Out Knife Pro Series; Glass Technology Windshield Removal Kit

Safety equipment — Working with windshields involves handling sharp glass fragments and potentially hazardous materials. It is crucial to prioritize safety by wearing protective gear such as safety glasses, gloves, and masks. Additionally, a readily available first aid kit is important for accidents or injuries.

Some examples include: 3M Virtua CCS Protective Eyewear; HexArmor Glass Handling Gloves

Keeping up

Having the right tools and equipment is crucial for effective windshield maintenance. Investing in high-quality tools such as windshield repair kits, glass removal tools, and safety equipment can enhance your capabilities and provide exceptional service to your customers.

Isabel Aguirre is the marketing manager of Anytime Auto Glass in Arizona.

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