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Emergency Windscreen

Community Veteran
Posts: 19,091
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Registered: ‎06-11-2007

Emergency Windscreen

I have been toting one around in my boot for many years.... ( wonder if it`s still any good,... must check it out in the morning ! )... 
I have a chip in the middle of the bottom of the screen, ( not in drivers view area) that has been "repaired"  by one of those free guys... ( and its passed the mot 4 times )... but it has started to develop a sideways crack.. I have arranged for Autoglass to come and replace the screen... and the earliest booking will be Dec 31st.  ( good job it`s not an emergency)... but , hey, that`s what my emergency screen is all about, right ?

The point of this thread, is..... How effective are they ?  do you have to knock out all the broken chipped glass? or just the bit in front of you ( drivers view area )... and put the screen over to keep the wind and rain out ?

How long can you use this for?  could it be used for a few days .... after the event... or only until you get the vehicle home. and await the replacement fitting of a new screen  ?

 Thoughts, ideas, and experiences.. much appreciated... :smiley:

14 REPLIES 14
Marksfish
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Re: Emergency Windscreen

I would carry on using the original screen and not worry too much about it. They are pretty strong, as they are now classed as a part of the structure. The crack may creep and grow a bit, but I doubt it will fall out :smiley: It took 8 months (and 30,000 miles) for the crack in my screen to become big enough to worry about changing.

idonno
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Re: Emergency Windscreen

The biggest problem at this time of year is ice. Gets in the crack and spreads it.

 

I've never had a car like mine that has been hit so many times by small stones on the windscreen. I drove it to an windscreen place (turned out it was an Autoglass place) and the man there said there wasn't much he could do as the crack didn't go all the way through. He did offer to repair the deep chip but it would cost. I went off to Halfords and bought a repair kit. Doddle of a job to do. Been MOT'd twice now. All I get in the advisories is mentioning of the chips but as they aren't big enough to fail, it gets passed.

But I wouldn't worry about a chip or small cracked screen as most (if not all) are laminated nowadays. They don't shatter like the toughen screens do (been there, done that). I'd imagine you just place the emergency screen over the hole. Mind you, I didn't even know they still made them.

 

Ever helpful. :grin: Sure, I’d love to help you out. Now which way did you come in?
RobPN
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Re: Emergency Windscreen

@shutter

I'd forgotten all about those Emergency Windscreens - it must have as much dust on it as your wallet!  :wink:

Seriously though, I'd agree with @Marksfishs advice not to be overly concerned as todays laminated windscreens don't behave in the same way as the old toughened ones which broke into thousands of small pieces.

All that's likely to happen is the crack will spread, possibly forking at some point(s), unless of course a lump of rubble falls on it from a truck in front of you!

Anyway, I thought Skoda windshields were bulletproof! :wink:

 

Edit:  @idonno beat me to it on my main points, but I do remember a cracked screen many years ago where moisture started getting between the laminations which started causing a misting (opaque) effect which was more obvious than the crack.

Community Veteran
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Registered: ‎06-11-2007

Re: Emergency Windscreen

Well, I am of the opinion that... I would rather fork out the £90 excess on my insurance for the replacement of the windscreen, than be travelling along a motorway, or dark country lane on a cold and wet windy night, when the worst happens. 

There is another chip on the screen..( been there since I bought the car ) and the interior surface will not get clean enough to stop being smeary when it is condensated... so . it is going to be changed.

The thread was more about the use of the Emergency screen... rather than the good or bad points of a chip and a crack spreading...

Who wants a cracked windscreen on their pride and joy, anyway  ? ? ? 

Community Veteran
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Re: Emergency Windscreen


@Marksfish wrote:

I would carry on using the original screen and not worry too much about it. They are pretty strong, as they are now classed as a part of the structure. .


I cracked one just by hitting the brakes to stop and rescue a rabbit in the road. The rabbit with one eye clearly hanging out, did a runner. I got back to find a knackered windscreen.

The resulting crack was a good 1.5ft long along the bottom of the windscreen. There were no chips there before it happened either.

To be blunt, they're really not as strong as you think. Flaming rabbit cost me £80 but I didn't have the heart to run it over. I always seem to pay the price for putting others first.

Another time I saw a chicken at the side of the road. Clearly risking it's own life, I pulled over onto the side of the road - a bit of grass which was a steep bank. Didn't think anything of it, chased the chicken back into the farm it had escaped from and let the owners know and went back to the car. Started up, drove away.. then noticed a strange oily smell and a slightly lower than normal oil needle. Only gone and cracked the sump hadn't I. Cost me £200 to get that repaired and i lost out on a trip abroad as the garage screwed that up, didn't put the oil filter back on properly and that then fell off and leaked oil all over a roundabout - requiring them to collect it and fix it the next day - after i was supposed to have flown the same evening as the oil filter falling off. Total loss due to that chicken: £320.

Totally fed up with my luck. I mean well, I wish and treat others well and all that comes my way is a constant stream of negativity and hardship. It's always been like that since i was a little kid, then people wonder why i'm so pessimistic, depressed and lack motivation.

I need a new signature... i'm bored of the old one!
PowerLee
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Re: Emergency Windscreen

The cracked screen will be fine until you get it replaced at the end of the month.

Be awear the car will be out of action for a couple of hours after the new screen is fitted as the bonding that holds the glass in has to cure.

The screen is a structural part of the safety cell of the car plus the force of deploying airbags can dislodge the screen if the bonding hasnt cured fully.
Community Veteran
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Registered: ‎06-11-2007

Re: Emergency Windscreen

@7up  Yeah... I know what you mean & feel.... Honestly ...I do... same kind of things happen to me

 

@PowerLee Thanks for your  input... I did have a rear screen done on an old montego estate a few years back, so I can recall some of the process involved... but... yeah... good idea to leave it standing for the rest of the day if possible.

 

JayG
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Re: Emergency Windscreen

I had a stone chip (with small star crack) repaired by Autoglass earlier this year - the filling/bonding agent sets by the action of UV light and since it was a sunny day the technician assured me it was good to go immediately (in winter they deploy a UV lamp.)

(He also asked me to give immediate feedback on my 'experience' - I was reluctant because as I pointed out, although the chip and crack looked better than before, I had no way of knowing whether the screen would crack from side to side the next time I drove the car. I did actually comply with his request on that occasion because I had a good laugh - the tablet device he used to record the survey had, yup, a diagonal crack right across the screen! :grin:)

VileReynard
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Re: Emergency Windscreen

If the chip is too shallow it can't be repaired (I was told) - but cracks & deep chips are OK.

If the crack starts to extend - stop driving!

When the crack reaches a critical size, it will accelerate rapidly and your windscreen will be effectively destroyed.

"In The Beginning Was The Word, And The Word Was Aardvark."

Baldrick1
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Re: Emergency Windscreen

@shutter

I know you get a lot of flak over your car but the key question is whether the screen is laminated or toughened. A few years ago I sold my 1977 Triumph Spitfire and that was the last car I owned with a toughened screen.

Emergency windscreens were designed for temporarily replacing these. I once had one go and it was a frightening experience as it went into thousands of bits and showered me in debris . I had to stop and remove every bit before moving on.

For many years these have been banned and replaced with laminated jobs and if yours has been repaired it’s almost certainly one. Look on the screen and somewhere it will either tell you or give a BS number which you can look up. If it’s laminated it will just crack and stay in one piece until you get it replaced.

Edit

Reading your post again, as you have a growing crack then it’s got to be laminated , so just don’t worry about it.

Community Veteran
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Registered: ‎06-11-2007

Re: Emergency Windscreen

@Baldrick1 Thanks for your input.... Yeah, I know.... but I am having the last laugh over them peoples  ! ! ... my car is great.... BEST CAR I have ever owned.... and I been through quite a few in my time,, incl all the Triumph Herald range... from 948cc to 2ltr Vitesse, with O/D   Even modified a 1200 using a spitfire twin carbs and manifold.

Ford   pah !

Vauxhall  2 Pah!. ! !

As you say... probably the later version of the screen, esp as it is only 7 yrs old...  Still got the replacement booked for the 31st...and will be happier when it`s done.

Cheers

 

Merry Christmas :wink:

Community Veteran
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Re: Emergency Windscreen

Update...... Just had the guy come round to do the job.... It took him about an hour... must say the glass looks a lot better than the old one...  !

HOWEVER...  if YOU want the same job done.... I DO NOT RECOMMEND you get AUTOGLASS involved.

They gave me a date/time to do the job.... 0900 to 1700  on 31st Dec.

They said they would contact me with a narrower time slot..... they did ... saying it would be a 2.5 hours slot

they said the guy doing the job would send me a text, this morning, narrowing it down further. he didn`t

At 0930 nothing was heard.. so emailed the company...

later, about 1030... got a text from company saying the guy would be here between 11.30 and 14.00

So... could not go out, between 10.30 to 11.30 as not enough time to get out an back before 11.30..

waited     waited    waited... waited... eventually at 13.30.  I sent another email to company ...

at 13.50  ( ten minutes before the end of the proposed time slot ) got a text saying he would be arriving in 10 minutes.

 

Absolutely Diabolical customer service..

( the guy seemed to do an efficient job though )

  I left him to it... didn`t even make him a cup of tea... despite it being a fair bit chilly out there..

1 hour later he rang the doorbell, .. completed the job... had to wait a further 20 mins before driving off ... but.. by now, it is too late to go out ...

.

 

Marksfish
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Re: Emergency Windscreen

At least yours was done on the first visit. My Fiesta van took 4 different visits with different 'screens, despite having reg, make, model VIN and being told it was heated!

PowerLee
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Re: Emergency Windscreen

Had 2 dealings in the past with the company mentioned.

1st dealing the screen was there own branded cheap glass & wasn't fitted correctly plus the chrome surround trim became detached.

2nd dealing some years later they refused to offer to fit a genuine screen when i asked saying it would cost £ hundreds to get the screen - a genuine screen was £95 for the part as I checked.

I ended up going back to my insurance company & getting a genuine screen fitted by there other approved glass repair company.