Is In-Shop or Mobile Service a Better Option for Your Auto Glass Replacement?

Is In-Shop or Mobile Service a Better Option for

Your Auto Glass Replacement?

Have you been wondering whether it’s better to have your auto glass replaced at an auto glass shop or through a mobile service? This is an important consideration, especially in the PNW, where the climate poses unique challenges. Let’s dive into the pros and cons of both options to shed some light on the subject. 

The Cons of Mobile Services / Pros of In-Shop Services

The auto glass industry is poorly regulated and has no bars to entry. Due to this, many companies only offer mobile services because it requires less investment compared to a traditional brick-and-mortar shop. However, this cost-saving measure leads to inferior service and safety due to the lack of skilled installations. 

Here are some other downsides to mobile services—and advantages of in-shop services—to keep in mind: 

  1. Lack of a controlled environment: Mobile services don’t work in a controlled environment; we do. Our shop’s roof protects your vehicle from any weather conditions that could cause an inferior installation. Equipped to handle unexpected issues, we can promptly secure necessary parts, administer appropriate treatments, or, if needed, safely store your vehicle overnight. Conversely, mobile services may resort to improvisation or, in worst cases, they may leave the job incomplete with no way to reach them or means to resolve the issue.
  • Weather-Related Installation Challenges: Weather conditions like rain, wind, snow, ice, heat, and airborne debris significantly impact mobile auto glass replacement. Adhesives used in windshield installation require specific temperature conditions to ensure a strong, proper bond. Extreme temperatures can prevent the adhesive from bonding correctly. The surface must also be dry and free from contaminants to guarantee a successful installation. Even on a clear day, wind can introduce dust, leaves, and other debris into the adhesive and potentially lead to leaks or bond failure. 
  • Warranty Concerns: Without a brick-and-mortar location, addressing warranty issues can be challenging since there’s no physical place to return to for follow-up service. 
  • Wrong, Missing, or Defective Parts: If the mobile company uses the wrong parts or is missing a part, it could leave your vehicle vulnerable to adverse weather conditions, especially if it involves the windshield. Defective parts aren’t uncommon in our industry; when parts are defective, the installer must decide whether to attempt a temporary fix or wait for a replacement. 
  • Rust Formation: Rust formation is a significant issue in auto glass replacement that often results from shortcuts taken to save time and increase profits. During the windshield removal process, the E-coat of the paint can become damaged, which exposes the metal underneath. If the bare metal isn’t treated with a primer, it will oxidize and rust; the corrosion will continue to grow until it causes the windshield to release from the body of the vehicle. This not only creates leaks but also jeopardizes the safety of the windshield. 

To prevent this, we proactively identify rust risks and explain to our customers how we’ll safely resolve the issue. We’ve developed a comprehensive approach to rust that involves rust removal, oxidation neutralization with phosphoric acid, contaminant cleaning via chemical flash, and double-layer carbon-based primer application. We also document each stage of the process. For a detailed look at our rust treatment process, watch our video here

  • Enhanced Repair Capabilities: In-shop service provides technicians with access to a comprehensive set of tools and equipment, which ensures high-quality repairs for any vehicle damage.
  • Cost-Effective Solutions: Choosing in-shop repairs eliminates mobile service fees, offering a more budget-friendly option without compromising on service quality.
  • Accurate ADAS Calibration: For static calibration of Advanced Driver Assistance Systems (ADAS), in-shop service is essential. Despite the availability of mobile systems, in-shop calibration ensures higher accuracy, reliability, and safety.

The Pros of Mobile Services / Cons of In-Shop Services

Although in-shop auto glass services are safer, more reliable, and offer a controlled environment, mobile services do offer some benefits:

  1. Convenience: Mobile service brings the repair to you, which can be more convenient for those with busy schedules. 
  • Flexibility: Mobile services can adapt to your needs, offering repairs wherever it’s most convenient for you.
  • Immobilized Vehicles: If your vehicle can’t be driven to the shop due to damage or other issues, mobile services can be a good option.  
  • Accommodating Tight Schedules: If you’re unable to visit a shop due to time constraints, mobile service can be a good alternative. However, we also offer an after-hours key drop at our shop. If you can arrange to drop off your vehicle during business hours or the day before, we’re also happy to keep it secured in our shop for you. 

Regardless of the company you choose to perform your glass replacement, make sure you take the time to research their reputation. If your gut is telling you it’s too good to be true, then you’re probably right.

Call us today for a hassle-free estimate at 253-569-9403. You can trust Lucky Dog Auto Glass for all your auto glass repair and replacement needs. 

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