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Can Car Windshields Crack From Heat?


You’re likely in the habit of leaving your car to bask in the sun without any concern for the windshield. Then you suddenly begin to notice a crack on the windshield and it had you wondering can car windshields crack from heat?

The answer is yes, your car windshield can crack from exposure to excessive heat. Car windshields are strong and durable, however, they aren’t indestructible. A car windshield absorbs heat which causes an elasticity in the glass, thus leading to crack. 

This article explains the possible impact the sun can have on your car’s windshield and the best way to protect your windshields from heat.

How Heat Impacts Your Car Windshield

The intense heat of the sun makes the windshield contract hence causing an increase in already existing cracks. Long driving hours in the summer sun increase the stress on the windshield as the windshield absorbs the heat.

These are the different types of windscreen damage.

Minor Chips

A minor chip is about 40 mm in size and the damage is restricted to the outer areas of the glass. A minor chip can be easily fixed by using a resin formula or you can pay a technician to fix it. 

Larger Chips

These are chips that are bigger than minor chips and extend to the inner area of the glass. They can’t be fixed especially if there are multiple large chips on the windshield.


Cracks are a breakage line extending from one end of the windshield to the other. A car compromises the integrity of the windshield. There are different types of cracks based on the size of the crack. While a crack can’t be fixed, a minor crack can be managed to prevent further cracking.


While the sun may not directly break the windshield, the existing crack on the windshield will expand after the car cools down. The more heat the windshield absorbs, the larger existing cracks will expand, gradually leading to a poor driving experience.

How To Protect Your Car Windshield From Heat

Summer is a tough month for your car windshield as the heat can take a toll on it, thereby increasing contraction. When the windshield cools down, it will expand thereby expanding existing cracks and chips.

Therefore, it’s important to protect your car’s windshield from heat if you want to maintain its quality and save yourself the cost of buying a new one.

Below are ways you can protect your car’s windshield from heat.

Park in the Shade

An easy and effective way to protect your windshield from extreme heat is by parking your car in a shade. Taking your car out of direct sunlight will minimize the amount of sun that impacts your windshield. Thereby preventing it from absorbing heat and increasing existing cracks.


Avoid Using Hot Water To Wash Your Car Windshield

Pouring hot water on your windshield in extremely hot weather adds extra pressure to your windshield. Oftentimes, the water coming from the hose can be very warm due to the weather, avoid using such water on your car. Instead, allow the water to cool down before spraying it on your windshield.

Reduce AC Usage

When your car heater blows your windshield, it causes the windshield to contract hence increasing existing cracks. Instead of turning up the AC for hours, consider rolling down the windows and opting for some fresh air.

Buy A Car Windshield Shade

A car windshield shed is an efficient way to protect your windshield from the sun. Windshield shades have strong materials that can stop the impact of the sun from directly impacting the windshield.

Car windshield shades are portable and you can easily place them on the windshield after parking. Windshield shades are also affordable which makes them a cost-effective option to protect your car.


Check Your Car Regularly

Regular car checks ensure that you spot any damage to your windshield and fix it before it gets worse.

By checking your car regularly, you will be able to spot any cracks and chips on your windshield and fix them before it expands. Therefore saving you the cost of having to buy a new windshield.

Repair Windshield Chips Immediately

Repairing windshield chips immediately you spot them will stop them from expanding and ruining your windshield. Sometimes, the chips appear small and easy to ignore. However the more they get impacted by the sun, the bigger they can become. The chip will gradually grow outwards and limit the windshield view.

Fixing your windshield chips immediately you spot it will not only prevent further damage but will also save you the cost of buying a new one.

Replace Your Windshield Wipers

If you find that your windshield wipers aren’t strong enough to wipe away all water on the glass, you should consider changing it. After years of use, wiper blades can lose their shape which causes them to put pressure on the windshield.

A poor windshield wiper can impact the glass, thereby reducing its strength and making it prone to chips and cracks.

Stop Using Harsh Chemicals

Harsh cleaning chemicals contain ammonia which is an aggressive cleaning formula that reduces the strength of the glass. Harsh chemicals can cause color discoloration and strip away the glass’s protective coating.

While ammonia might be good for cleaning harder surfaces such as floors, it weakens glass and makes it susceptible to cracks and chips. If you want to make a homemade cleaning solution, you can consider using a vinegar and water combination. You should however ensure you properly rinse it off and clean the car after use.

Treat Your Vehicle Nicely

Cars cost good money and except you have thousands of dollars to throw around, it’s important that you treat your car with care. Sometimes, a good car door slam is what you need to calm down and let off some steam, however, ensure that these moments are few and far in-between.

Slamming your door and sending shock waves through the glass can weaken it and make it susceptible to damage. When you slam your door in hot weather it increases the pressure on the windshield, thereby causing it to contract.

You benefit a lot and lose nothing by treating your car nicely. You get to reduce the risk of damage to your car and also save yourself the cost of repairs or the cost of buying a new car.


The summer heat is a tough period for your car windshield as the impact of the sun can weaken the glass and also increase existing cracks and chips. To protect the integrity of your windshield, you should take measures to protect your windshield from the heat.

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