Is Mobile Auto Glass Replacement Dangerous?

Is mobile auto glass replacement dangerous? The simple answer is yes, it is. Since mobile auto glass services are not regulated* and cannot offer the same stability, they may offer lower quality installation than a specialized auto glass shop. Unfortunately, this can have hazardous results. What makes mobile auto glass dangerous? That’s where the long answer comes in.

To start with, you should probably know what a mobile-installation service is. As the name suggests, it is an on-the-go repair service where the technician goes to the customer, rather than the other way around. On the surface, this all sounds great, right? You can get the same services at an increased level of convenience, so why wouldn’t you want to turn to a mobile service? Well, it is important to remember that convenient is not synonymous with quality, and the word “same” in this instance is only true on a very surface level. Mobile services come with numerous shortcomings which could seriously compromise the quality of service as well as the safety of a vehicle and its passengers.

Glass repair and replacement is a delicate process, and a lack of proper training and knowledge can severely impact the quality of work. It is not uncommon for a poorly trained technician to work without gloves, which could compromise the glue’s ability to properly bond as a result of the oil on the technician’s hands. There are various other concerns that a lack of training could cause including improper application of adhesive, a lack of proper prep and priming of the glass, the use of incorrect parts, the list goes on. It is also very common for mobile services to only have one technician to perform a replacement, which is a serious problem, as a lone technician simply cannot properly align a windshield with a vehicle.

Even if you get two mobile technicians with sufficient knowledge and training, there is another very important factor at play, the work environment. One of the most important aspects of glass installation is improvisation, the ability to adapt to different issues as you encounter them. Working in the field comes with many restrictions that inhibit a technician’s ability to adapt to whatever unique issues your vehicle may face. Certain tools simply cannot be transported in a mobile vehicle, so a lack of proper equipment is a very real possibility. A customer may not know the exact make or model of their car, so there is a chance that the technician might not even have the proper replacement parts. Certain issues can take longer periods of time to properly fix, so if your vehicle is exposed to certain elements there is a very real possibility that the end result will be shoddy, due to the need for the technician to rush the process.

Your vehicle’s windshield is an extremely important component of you and your passengers’ safety. A windshield that isn’t properly installed could result problems ranging from leaks all the way to your windshield actually popping out of the frame! The question of quality is ultimately what makes mobile auto glass replacement dangerous. If a windshield is improperly replaced, the seal may not be perfect. Without a perfect seal, the windshield can not adequately protect you and your passengers in an accident. Tragically, people have died because of shoddy auto glass workmanship. Protect yourself and everyone who travels in your vehicle with safe and professional auto glass repairs and replacement.

If you need glass replacement performed, then be sure to you go to a shop with a strong reputation and replacement guarantee. For those who have already received work from a mobile glass replacement service and have been experiencing issues or have concerns, feel to schedule an appointment with our team for an inspection of the work. Ensure your windshield and auto glass replacement is safe. Come see Lucky Dog Auto Glass.

*A lot of mobile glass shops exist because the auto glass industry is very poorly regulated allowing anyone to open a business without a storefront to work out of. While this significantly lowers overhead it also allows inferior practices. When something goes wrong with an installation and there isn’t a shop to return to you are banking on the fact that the installer will stand behind his work, when in reality there’s no easier way to avoid dealing with warranty work or simply ignoring a customer’s call. In no way am I saying all mobile operates this way, but I’ve heard of this time and time again from my customers.

Is Mobile Windshield Installation Safe?

Unfortunately, mobile windshield installation is not safe. Although it is convenient, it does not offer the same resources, equipment, and most importantly – time – for the installation to be completed properly. It is better to go to a specialized auto glass repair shop to have your repairs completed because the shop will be able to correctly remove your existing windshield, repair any damage, and install your new windshield in a controlled environment. In the field, you are subject to any disruptions that might occur, such as unexpected issues with the parts, damage to the vehicle, and weather. It’s not possible for mobile installers to react to these obstacles without affecting the quality of the work.

The auto glass industry is not regulated, meaning any person with a truck can start a windshield installation business. While mobile windshield installation is convenient for drivers with a busy schedule, it can be disastrous for your safety. Ultimately, there are several issues with mobile installation that make it unsafe. Without proper installation, a windshield can pop out at any time, let water or wind into your vehicle, and not protect you properly in case of an accident. Here are 7 signs that your mobile windshield installation was not completed correctly:

      Only One Person
      A true quality windshield replacement will require at least two experienced auto glass technicians to complete. If there is only one person in the mobile service, this is a red flag. One person simply cannot ensure the windshield glass is aligned with the vehicle correctly before installing it.
      No Gloves
      If you watch the installer handle your windshield, and the technicians are not wearing gloves, this is a major problem. New windshield glass is covered with urethane, which is necessary for the glass to be secured properly. However, without gloves technicians can transfer oils from their hands to the glass. This reduces the adhesive strength and can result in leaks. When replacing a windshield, your auto glass technicians should be wearing proper gloves.
      Unclear Glass Origins
      With thousands of different vehicles on the road and millions of different glass options, it is possible that even if the installer orders the correct windshield for your vehicle, the wrong one is delivered. An experienced professional in a auto glass repair shop will double-check to ensure that the glass is correct from the manufacturer. However, an installer in the field doesn’t have the advantage of time or space to keep your vehicle, they may use the incorrect part. Some installers also use after-market glass to cut costs. A reputable auto glass shop will let you know where the windshield is from and ensure it is the correct glass for your vehicle.
      Glass is Wavy
      This is another sign of inferior quality glass. If your installer used cut-rate glass to replace your windshield, it may appear wavy or bumpy in the sunlight. A windshield should appear consistent and smooth.
      Whistling Noise While Driving
      When you take your car on the freeway and accelerate, do you hear a whistling or whooshing sound? An improperly sealed windshield could be letting wind into the crevices between the vehicle and the glass. A common shortcut that causes this is called stuffing. It can be identified if you see a windshield replaced and the windshield wipers aren’t removed.
      Leaks in Your Windshield
      Does moisture seep through your vehicle when it’s raining or when you go through the car wash? If any water gets into your vehicle from the outside through your windshield, that is a sign that the glass was improperly installed. A perfect seal ensures no moisture or wind can enter the car.
      You Drove Your Car Right After Replacement
      If your mobile windshield installer gave you the go-ahead to drive your car immediately after your windshield replacement, this is a major issue. The adhesives used to properly secure the new glass require time to harden and cure. If you drive your car before the adhesive sets, the glass can shift while you drive. You may not think this is a big deal, but the smallest bump can cause your glass to move. If you drove your car within a few hours of installation, the glass might not be sitting right. We use a urethane that allows a 1 hour safe driveaway time, from the time the glass is set in the vehicle. Some adhesives take as long as 12 hours to cure!

What do you do if you have had mobile windshield installation and are concerned that your windshield is unsafe? Call the professionals at Lucky Dog Auto Glass! We can inspect, repair, and replace your vehicle’s auto glass.

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