Windshield Repair Surveys

​DECADES OF DATA ON WINDSHIELD CHIPS AND CRACKS IN THE UNITED STATES

  • Windshields are the #1 Auto Insurance Claim in the United States.
  • There are 264,000,000 vehicles in the United States.
  • Parking Lots Surveys in 13 cities in 12 different states show 14% of windshields in the U.S. have a long crack.
  • 79% of these cracks are edge cracks.
  • For every million vehicles there are over 300,000 Stone-Breaks (Chips).

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Whether you are starting a new windshield repair business or are looking to expand your current business into long-crack repair, we can help you meet your goals.

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How This Impacts Your Windshield Repair Business?

What can you be repairing?

You will repair more and have far more opportunity if you have a windshield crack repair kit that is capable of repairing long cracks and chips versus a windshield repair kit that only repairs chips. Repair More= Make More.

Here are 20 years of market data from our Windshield Repair and Replacement Business and Parking Lot Surveys from 12 states, so you can see what type of damage and the length of repairs are done the most and the least.

Chip repairs are the most common. They go for about $50 to $65. The average payment from an insurer for a repair is $63.

Long Crack repair goes for about $100 -$150. With a long crack, the insurance company will pay the $63 and the consumers will gladly pay the rest because you're saving them hundreds of dollars. NOTE - The insurer or Third Party Administrator (TPA) will now tell the insured they have to pay the difference. You should inform your customer of this before you call in the claim if your customer is going to use their insurance coverage.

With crack repair, you are competing in the replacement market, which is the consumer market. Cracks will be about 40-50% of your gross repair income. Repairing cracks will open up the ability to market, advertise on the Internet and compete with replacements that are $250+ more on vehicles without ADAS (Advanced Driver Assistance Systems) and $700+ more on the newer vehicles with ADAS without doing replacements yourself. Almost all new vehicles now have ADAS.

ADAS is now a boon for long crack repair because the cost of a replacement has doubled and the consumer may have to go to the car dealer to get the vehicle re-calibrated after it has been replaced by an auto glass shop. That makes two inconveniences for the customer. The safety features involving the windshield have also doubled with ADAS - that means more safety features can be compromised by a replacement.

A crack is a repair versus replacement, a chip repair is preventive maintenance. Only 5% of chips actually crack-out into a floater crack.

An auto glass Repair Ratio is the total of all Repairs (chip and cracks) versus Replacements. At Ultra Bond this Ratio is 89%.

The "Real Repair Ratio" is Crack Repairs vs Replacements. The Crack Repair versus Replacement Ratio is 84% -This is the percent of replacements in the United States that can be repaired.

The only condition that renders a crack un-repairable is contamination in the form of dust or dirt. Fortunately, this is rare. Contamination in cracks 14-inches and under is less than 3%. This is because the gap of the crack is not wide enough to allow the dirt in. It is also fortunate that when a windshield cracks-out it is cracking to relieve stress and 74% of the time the stress is relieved at less than 15 inches, which is why 74% of cracks are 14-inches and under. This is why the United States Auto Glass Industry's Repair of Laminated Auto Glass Standard (ROLAGS) landed on 14-inches. The Australian and New Zealand Standard is and has been at 14-inches since 1999.

Here are decades of data from Ultra Bond Windshield Repair and Replacement Shop with a comparison to Parking Lot Surveys from 12 states:

Damage     Shop Data        Parking Lot Surveys
(1) Total Chips     66%         74%
(2) Total Cracks     34%         26%
(a) Edge Cracks     31%         22%
(b) Floater Cracks       3%           4%

* 90% of the cracks you will repair will be edge cracks.  34% of your repairs will be cracks.  66% of your repairs will be chips.

Damage Ratios and Percentages:     Shop Data:          Parking Lot Surveys:
Edge Crack to Floater Crack    92% Edge Cracks           84% Edge Cracks
Floater Crack to Edge Crack        4% Floater Cracks           5% Floater Cracks
% of Chips    66% Chips           74% Chips
% of Cracks    34%           26%
% of Edge Cracks    31%           22%
% of Floater Cracks      3%             4%

* 74% of crack repairs are 14 inches and under. Contamination in cracks 14-inches and under is less than 3%.

Length of Cracks Repaired:        Contamination Rate of Cracks by Length:
         3" - 6" = 10%           2.5%
         7"- 14" = 64%           2.4%
       15" - 18"= 17%              7%
       19"- 24"+= 9%            13%

For more valuable information you should know to see our Lab Tests and Real World Performance showing Ultra Bond Repairs to be stronger than a new windshield.

Note -The  Ultra Bond vs. Safelite Lawsuit filed in August 2015 is ongoing as of this date.

Ultra Bond filed a Federal Lanham Act (False Advertising) Complaint on Safelite's False Advertising Campaign - telling insurance companies, insureds, consumers, business owners and everyone they came in contact with that a crack longer than a dollar bill (six-inches) is a replacement. During discovery, it was found in Safelite's documents that they know when it comes to repairing cracks, as it was stated in their own documents that - "24-inches is safe and viable". Safelite has also NOT produced any evidence that there is any difference in a six-inch crack versus a 7- inch crack, or 8" or 9" or 10" or 11" or 12" or 13" or 14", etc. In September of 2019 we filed for Summary Judgement to hold Safelite liable for decieving millions of consumers out of billions of dollars and for an immediate Injunction (stop) to their six-inch size of a dollar bill nonsense.

PROOF THAT EDGE CRACKS CAUSE MOST REPLACEMENTS

The statistics below were obtained by combining several survey results taken from: 1. Replacement shops, 2. Ultra BOND Repair Shops, and 3. Mall parking lots. Multiple surveys were completed, representing over 10,000 vehicles.

More than 80% of windshield replacement are caused by edge cracks. Over 90% of the time the impact point that causes edge cracks is 2.5 inches or less from the edge . 

Memphis, TN.     350     169       9      36   4    18
Warren, MI.     400     190       8      42   9    2
Las Vegas, NV.     150     61       1      13   3    N/A
Salt Lake City, UT.     150     69       6      23   4    N/A
Fairmont, MN.      60     22       1      14   1    N/A
Bloomington, IL.     200     83       2      20   11    11
North Platte, NE.     500    247      25      114   9    13
Grand Junction, CO.     250    106       6      30   3     4
Baton Rouge, LA     450    417       6     103   4    11
Shreveport, LA     200    180       4      33   3     9
Phoenix, AZ    1209    236      15      88   11    N/A
Mall of America, Minn.*    1176     217      13      40   12    N/A
Denver     428     205      25      90   2    N/A
Total    5523    2202     121     646   76    68

* This survey was conducted with Harmon AutoGlass in Minnesota. Findings might not accurately reflect the number of damages per vehicle in the local market because the Mall of America is a tourist attraction. However, the objective of that particular survey was to determine damage types and percentages, which are accurate.

FACTS

Stones cause 90% of windshield replacements. When a stone hits within 2 to 3 inches of the edge, it cracks almost immediately. This is called an edge crack. When a stone hits beyond the 2 to 3 inches of the edge area, it makes a stone break (bulls-eye, star break, etc.) These breaks are about the size of a dime and less than 10% will eventually crack into what is called a floater crack. A floater crack is a long crack not off the edge, caused by a stone break that spread. Cracked windshields will fail at least 4 ANSI/SAE 2.26 safety tests.

SURVEY CONCLUSIONS

  1. 85% of cracked windshields are off the edge of the glass. Edge cracks out number floater cracks 5 to 1.
  2. Less than 10% of stone breaks actually crack, which is probably why consumers don't bother having them repaired.

FACTS OBTAINED FROM OTHER SURVEYS

  1. Over 90% of long cracks repaired at windshield repair shops are edge cracks.
  2. Approximately 80% of replacements are from edge cracks.