Replacing the Windshield on Your Leased Car

When it comes to the decision of leasing or owning a car, there are plenty of reasons for people to choose either option. For those who choose a leased car, it’s nice to always have the opportunity to drive a newer vehicle that you get to update every few years because it means you rarely have to worry about repairs beyond your basic routine maintenance. Leasing also gives you the opportunity to drive a car that might be a little too far out of your budget to buy outright, which is always nice. However, it has downsides, as well… such as big upcharges for any damage to the leased car on your watch, including damage to your windshield or auto glass.

Windshield Replacement

It’s not uncommon for us to see people with leased cars in the shop for windshield repair or replacement. It may seem like a strange idea to pay for a repair on a leased vehicle when you can just give it back at the end of the lease term and take the penalty, but in reality you’re actually saving money by doing the repair yourself. Those penalties can be steep and include upcharges that you normally wouldn’t have to deal with if you owned the car, mainly because the auto dealership wants to take an additional cut for the inconvenience of having to take care of a repair themselves. If they want to lease the vehicle again or offer it for resale, it needs to be in the best possible condition, so they want to make sure they’re covered for that cost and then some.

If you’re getting close to the end of your lease and know you have some glass or windshield damage that needs repair or replacement, it’s the perfect time to make an appointment with the team at Lucky Dog to get it fixed. We recommend people wait until their lease is almost up because that reduces the risk of any additional damage happening before you have to bring the car back in to the dealer. Without taking this step, you could not only lose your security deposit, but also be charged additional fees that end up costing you much more than the glass repair.

This is as good a time as any to do some quick budget balancing to determine your costs. Will your fees end up exceeding the cost of windshield replacement when you return the leased car? If so, it’s well worth your time to make the appointment and get that glass fixed up.

Lucky Dog Auto Glass is a reputable local company with a shop location near you! We make the promise to install our auto or truck glass “factory perfect” every time. Our team of expert technicians go the extra mile to ensure a tight, proper seal and we’ll make sure your window frame is cleaned and prepped the right way. When you’re leasing a vehicle, these details are extra important because the auto dealer will be doing an inspection for wear and tear. Give your car back in the absolute best possible condition!

If you have any other questions about how we work with lease warranties or other concerns, give us a call anytime.

Uber and Lyft Vehicle Requirements in Washington

The gig economy has become an excellent way to earn additional income. Especially if you have an asset already, such as a car, you can now leverage that asset to make money in your free time! Many people are turning to ridesharing apps to supplement their income. Especially in Kent, Seattle, Tacoma, and the surrounding areas, it seems as if there are cars with pink mustaches and Uber stickers everywhere.

You may want to join in on the financial gains, but will your vehicle make the cut? Uber and Lyft have strict requirements for vehicles. They want to ensure happy customers, so they expect cars to be in good condition, clean, and have no cosmetic damage. For example, Uber requires vehicles in the Seattle area to be 10 years old or newer, have no commercial branding, have 4 doors, be in good condition with no cosmetic damage, and pass a vehicle inspection. Lyft expects Washington applicants to have a vehicle that is 4 doors, 2009 or newer, and has 5-8 seats (including the driver), and pass a vehicle inspection.

Both Uber and Lyft require vehicles to pass an inspection before they begin driving. Why is this so important? Because they will be on the lookout for eyesores and cosmetic damage. If you have a broken windshield, you cannot operate as a driver for these rideshare apps. Cosmetic damage such as cracked windshields or auto glass will disqualify your vehicle. The good news is that auto glass damage can be fixed by the professionals in our facility. We are windshield repair and replacement experts. If you have any issues with your auto glass, we can fix it before your vehicle inspection.

Come by and see us for your auto glass repairs, so you can get on the road and start earning money as an Uber or Lyft driver!

Uber and Lyft Vehicle Requirements

Tips You Need to Know When Shipping Your Vehicle in Seattle

Are you shipping your vehicle via the Port of Seattle? Many people choose to ship their vehicles when moving. For example, people moving from Seattle to Alaska commonly ship their vehicles. Many people also find when moving to Northern or Southern California that shipping their vehicle is the best choice for transport. There are different methods of shipping, such as paying for an individual shipping container. This is an extremely expensive option that is generally reserved for exotic cars.

The most common shipping method is called roll-on/roll-off, or RORO. This is for vehicles that can be driven or rolled on and off the ship. Your car must be in drivable condition, otherwise you will incur a fee to have it towed onto the ship. There is less protection with RORO than a shipping container, but it is significantly cheaper. When shipping your vehicle roll-on/roll-off, it will be exposed to the weather, including rain, hail, and wind. For this reason, the Port of Seattle will not accept vehicles to ship that have a broken windshield. This is to protect them from liability issues and to protect your vehicle from damage.

Shipping your Vehicle

If you are planning on shipping your vehicle via the Port of Seattle, but it has broken auto glass, it will need to be fixed before boarding the boat. Whether it’s a cracked windshield or a broken window, Lucky Dog Auto Glass can help! We will repair or replace your windshield to ensure it has a perfect seal, which protects your vehicle interior from the weather. An imperfect seal or a crack in glass can lead to damage inside, such as mold. Protect your vehicle and make sure it is safe to ship by bringing it to our auto glass shop!

Is it better to go to a shop for windshield replacement?

Yes, it is better to go to a shop for windshield replacement. Why do we encourage all our customers to visit an auto glass shop for their windshield replacement? To protect themselves! For your safety and the safety of the passengers in your car, always take your vehicle to a specialized auto glass shop when you need windshield replacement. While mobile windshield replacement services are convenient, improper repairs in the field can lead to shoddy workmanship and dangerous results.

Quality

For example, if the auto glass technicians at Lucky Dog remove a windshield and find rust, we fix the damage. The existing rust is grinded down to bare metal, treated with acid that converts the metal to a removable substance, then a chemical is used that burns off surface contaminants and surface agents. Any contaminant from the process is burned off. Then we use a primer that is carbon-based, like our adhesive, that protects the metal from rust and gives a surface to bond the glass to the vehicle. That’s quite a process!

If the metal isn’t treated properly, it could be exposed. Exposed bare metal oxidizes and rusts. For the process to be completed properly, it takes time. We do one step, wait for it to be completed, and then come back to the treatment. Unfortunately, mobile auto glass replacement services can’t offer the same service because of the time and space it requires. In the field, the work is completed quickly, and mobile windshield installers do not have the space to keep a vehicle for hours or overnight.  That means that this process is not done correctly, compromising the safety of the vehicle and the quality of the installation.

Our shop has the equipment, time, and space necessary to complete auto glass repairs and installation properly. Without those valuable resources, mobile windshield replacement is an inferior option.

Stability

If and when something goes wrong with your mobile windshield installation, will the company who installed your windshield be accountable? Our shop is open, you can call our business phone number, and you can come in during business hours. We are present and available to hear any questions or concerns. A mobile installer with a truck can just block your number. How will you reach them to repair their shoddy work? Time and time again we hear this story from customers who relied on a mobile service for windshield installation.

There are many reasons that it is better to go to a shop for windshield replacement. One of the most apparent issues isn’t necessarily unique to mobile services, but the industry itself. Believe it or not, the auto glass industry isn’t regulated, meaning that any random person with a truck can start their own mobile-glass repair business. All they have to do is pay the state of California a yearly fee of $200 and voila, they are now a state-registered installer. 

When you come to Lucky Dog Auto Glass, you are entrusting your car to a team that has years of experience and a focus on completing the job correctly. We are accountable for our work and always happy to answer any questions you may have. When you need a windshield replacement completed right the first time, come see the experts.

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.

Window Replacement for Smart Vehicles

As cars rely more and more on computer technology, every component becomes more advanced. This includes the windshield! Recently we replaced the windshield in a 2015 GMC Acadia equipped with a Lane Departure Warning System and Heads Up Display. Because this vehicle was equipped with LDWS, it required dealer glass. An aftermarket windshield would not work properly. We advocated for the customer with the insurance company and ultimately won. The dealer glass is critical to ensure the system will correctly calibrate and the vehicle is safe to drive.

Window Replacement for Smart Vehicles

The Importance of Professional Auto Glass Installation

As you can see in the photos, there are close ups of the camera system, bracket, and attachments on the glass. These parts allow the LDWS system to work. Without the right glass and proper installation, the system could fail. It is always important to have proper auto glass replacement. For drivers with an LDWS or similar system, it is even more important to find a trusted repair center. This case is an example of why it is important to seek out professionals for auto glass replacement. Without thorough knowledge of auto glass, an inexperienced person may put in generic glass or install it incorrectly. Both scenarios could be potentially dangerous for the driver and passengers.

New windshield

When we receive any vehicle, we prep the body for the new glass. This includes removing all contaminants, chemically burning off release agents, and priming any bare metal to eliminate corrosion and provide a bonding surface for the new windshield. As a courtesy to our customers, we vacuum out vehicles to make sure they are cleaner than when they were brought in. Every cowl (the top portion of the front part of the auto body) is removed so there isn’t a risk of bond failure, air, or a water leak. The photos of this GMC Acadia show the result of all the hard work we put in – a totally redone, safe, and fully functional windshield!

GMC Acadia

What To Do If Your Car Is Broken Into

Broken car window

If your car has been broken into, we know how stressful that situation can be. It’s never pleasant to have your vehicle vandalized. If anything has been stolen, such as a purse, cellphone, or laptop, it can be even more traumatic as you worry about a thief going through your personal items. You may be unsure what to do in the moment. That’s OK! This is a tough situation that you probably haven’t experienced before. That’s why we’ve compiled this list to share helpful steps to do after your car is broken into.

Alert the Police. If your car has been broken into, it’s important to call the police. They may be able to help find the culprit or your lost item. If nothing else, you will need a record of the break in for your insurance purposes. Relay what has happened to the authorities, ask them to make a report of it, and get a copy of the police report as well as the number of the report.

Shut Down Your Technology. If your cellphone has been stolen, contact your provider immediately and deactivate your mobile phone. This will help prevent any cyber theft, identity theft, and the thief using your cell phone – possibly pretending to be you. If your laptop has been stolen, change all applicable passwords on websites and software programs. Your computer has a lot of information about you. Try to log out of any websites and programs remotely as soon as possible.

Snap Photos. Take photos of the scene before you begin cleaning up. That way you have proof, if you need it for any reason.
Check the Car Thoroughly. Be sure to note everything that was stolen from the vehicle and any damage. Don’t just look at the broken glass. Has the door been forced? Are there rips to the upholstery or dents to the body of the car?

Get Your Car Repaired. Lucky Dog Auto Glass works with your insurance to ensure your auto glass repair goes smoothly. It’s never pleasant to have your car broken into. Get your fully restored vehicle back quickly when you bring it to Lucky Dog.

Start Replacing Your Stolen Belongings. Be sure to keep receipts for all replacements. Create a spreadsheet of stolen items, note how much you paid for the replacement, and keep all receipts. Discuss reimbursement with your insurance.

A car break in is never fun. By following these straightforward steps, you can be on your way to repairing your car and getting back on the road. If you need any assistance, call Lucky Dog Auto Glass.

4 Ways to Prevent Car Break-Ins

Nothing can completely prevent a car break-in. Unfortunately, a person can break a window, vandalize the outside of your car, or cause other havoc to your vehicle regardless of the actions you take. However, there are 4 key ways to make your car less appealing to a thief.

  1. 1. Be sure to always lock your doors and close all the windows. Don’t make it easier for a burglar to get into your vehicle, so be sure to double check your vehicle when you park it.
  2. 2. Park in a well-lit area. This is not only safer for your vehicle – it’s safer for you! If it is after dark or your car will be in the area after dark, try your best to find a spot that is well-lit. It’s ideal to park in a well trafficked area where people can clearly see if someone is rummaging through your vehicle. For example, under a streetlamp or near an open storefront.
  3. 3. Remember to activate your alarm system. If you have a security system on your vehicle, either standard or after market, be sure to turn it on when you leave the car, even for a short period.
  4. 4. Do not leave your purse, laptop case, or briefcase in your car. These can attract thieves for smash and grab style job. Also, don’t move your valuables into your trunk when you get to your destination. A thief may observe you hiding your purse or other valuables and target your vehicle for a break in. Put all valuables in the trunk before your drive to your destination.

Follow these tips to protect your car and valuables. While nothing can completely prevent a break in, these steps can help make your car look less attractive to potential thieves. If a break in does happen, get your glass fixed as soon as possible to detract further vandalism. Lucky Dog Auto Glass helps car owners fix their windshield, back window, or car door glass after a break in. If you need help with your auto glass, call us today.

Top 3 Reasons to Trust A Repair Shop for Your Windshield Replacement

Trust A Repair Shop for Your Windshield ReplacementIf you have a crack in your windshield and it needs replacement, you may be tempted to call a service that will come to you. Mobile services are convenient, however there is a downside to that convenience. By coming to a fully equipped auto glass facility, you can ensure your vehicle receives the best windshield replacement.

Here are our top 3 reasons to trust a repair shop as opposed to a mobile service:

  1. A professional auto glass facility is a controlled environment. Even in good weather, contaminants can get into glue and other elements of the installation. Landscapers completing work, wind, passing vehicles, and other disruptions can stir up contaminants that will adversely affect windshield installation.
     
  2. Not all parts work perfectly in every installation. It’s possible to receive defective glass that isn’t a perfect fit. This leaves the installer with a tough choice: either install the less than perfect auto glass or leave your windshield out overnight. Unlike a mobile service, we can take the time to find the absolute best fit for you when your car is parked inside our shop. Our repair shop sends back defective parts on an almost daily basis. Many vehicles often have as many 10 or 12 different windshield options available! Bringing your car to Lucky Dog avoids an additional trip charge if the windshield is incorrect. If you are in the shop, we can reorder the windshield and usually complete the installation the same day. The important difference is we take the time to make sure you receive a perfectly-fitting windshield.
     
  3. A mobile service doesn’t necessarily have all the right tools. A mobile service is restricted by space; they can’t carry every part, tool, and piece of equipment. However, our repair shop specializes in auto glass repair and replacement. We take workmanship seriously; we only use the best materials and we have all the tools that we need in our shop to handle any issue that may arise during your windshield installation.

Lucky Dog Auto Glass is proud to offer quality windshield replacements in our auto glass facility. In our controlled environment, using the proper materials and procedures, we make sure a perfect seal is achieved every time. Get the best windshield replacement for your vehicle by visiting our facility. Call today to schedule your appointment!

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