How to Break Auto Glass in Houston During an Emergency

Auto glass in Houston on black car

Emergency situations may require you to break auto glass in Houston.

Auto glass in Houston is important for safety and also costs money to repair and replace. Therefore, there are few situations where you would actually want to break the glass in your car. However, there are some emergencies where you might find yourself needing to break the glass to escape or to rescue someone from a car. It’s important to know the right ways to do this so you can act quickly during emergency situations. In any emergency, you should always call the authorities first if you’re able. However, we do have some tips for how to break car windows in case of an urgent situation. Read on to learn more about how to break through auto glass in Houston.

Why Might You Need to Break Auto Glass in Houston?

Fortunately, there are few situations where you would actually need to break auto glass in Houston. These are rare, but it’s good to be prepared for anything. Here are some reasons you might find yourself looking for ways to break a car window:

  • You are trapped in the car and the car is on fire or submerged in water
  • You locked your keys in your car along with your child or pet
  • There’s a child or pet inside a hot car alone that might be suffering from overheating

In these cases, someone is in imminent danger and, therefore, a broken car window is generally better than the alternative. 

When is it Legal to Break a Car Window?

If it’s your car, then that means you own the auto glass in Houston and can break it whenever you like with no consequences, except paying for repairs like Houston windshield replacement or car window replacement. It’s perfectly legal to break your own car’s windows because it’s your property. Of course, we don’t recommend you do so for any reason other than life-threatening situations. For instance, if you’ve just locked your keys in the car but no one’s stuck inside, it’s usually better to just call a locksmith to let you in than break the window.

However, when it’s someone else’s car, this is where legality comes into play. Usually this is due to a child or pet alone in a hot car. Cars can be up to 20° hotter than the temperature outside, so it’s a serious issue that can lead to heat stroke and death, particularly for young children and pets. 

 It’s Legal if a Child is Locked in a Car

If you find a child alone in a hot car and they show obvious signs of overheating or distress, then it’s usually legal to break the car window to save them. Good samaritan laws do generally protect you from criminal charges if you’re rescuing a child from a hot car.

However, once again, we recommend calling the authorities before breaking the auto glass. They may have responders close by to help you or they can help guide you on what to do. Alerting the authorities can also help in case someone else sees what you’re doing and thinks you’re breaking into the car for criminal reasons. For extra protection, you might want to snap a picture of what you’re seeing as well as the car to show that you saw clear signs that the child was in imminent danger. 

It’s Likely Illegal Even if Pets are Locked in a Car

If you notice a pet locked in a hot car, we also recommend alerting the authorities, such as the non-emergency police line or animal services. Currently, there is no good samaritan protection for rescuing a pet from a hot car, so keep this in mind. However, the car’s owner can often be charged with animal cruelty. Alert the authorities of the issue and they’ll guide you from there. 

How to Break Auto Glass in Houston

Auto glass in Houston is specifically designed to be harder to break than normal glass. This is important because it protects you from broken glass during accidents or even just normal rock chips. Also, it can help keep you in the vehicle during a car crash to prevent car ejection. Therefore, auto glass will also be pretty hard to break if you don’t have the right tools and knowledge.

Choose Tempered Auto Glass in Houston, Not Laminated Glass

One thing to think about is what kind of glass is in the car. Laminated glass is especially strong, as it’s two layers of glass with a hard plastic inner layer. It’s designed to be much tougher than other glass and, even when it breaks, it’s supposed to stay intact, with the glass pieces staying stuck to the plastic layer. Therefore, we recommend looking for tempered glass to break because it will be much easier. 

Many cars use tempered glass on the side windows of the car. More manufacturers are starting to use laminated glass for car windows, which can make it more difficult to break a window if needed. It helps to know what kind of windows your car has before you’re in an emergency, so make sure to look it up so you have an exit strategy in case you’re faced with a worst-case scenario. If it’s another person’s vehicle, the authorities may be able to tell you which window to try to break or you might be able to look it up. You can also often find information about the glass on labels in the lower corners of the glass. 

Find Weak Points in the Glass 

It’s also important to note that there will be certain areas that are weaker than others in the glass. Generally, you want to know where these points are and target them if you need to break a car window in an emergency. Despite what you might think, the middle of the glass is often the strongest area, which makes it harder to break from that point. Therefore, instead, try to target the edges and corners of the glass.

Methods for Breaking Auto Glass in Houston During an Emergency

There are many ways to break auto glass in case of an emergency. Here are some methods to know, just in case:

Use a Glass Break Tool

Many people keep a tool designed specifically for breaking tempered auto glass in Houston in their cars. These may vary in design, but usually they’re either a hammer-like tool you have to hit the window with or a spring-loaded tool that you press against the glass and allow the spring to do the work of hitting the glass. The spring-loaded tools tend to be the most effective. Use the tool based on the instructions it comes with to break glass in case of an emergency.

Try the Headrest

If you don’t have one of these tools and you’re stuck inside the car, then you can use the headrest. Many car headrests have metal legs that attack to the seat. Take the headrest out from the seat and jam the metal pieces into the seal where the window rolls up and down. Then, pull the headrest toward you to put pressure on the glass. This will usually shatter the window.

Use a Spark Plug

If you can get to the car’s motor, you can detach one of the spark plugs and use it to break a car window. Spark plugs usually have a ceramic housing, which you’ll need to break on the ground. Then, choose the largest, sharpest piece of ceramic to try to break the window. Take that piece and throw it as hard as you can to hit the sides of the window to try to break it.

Find A Sharp Piece of Metal, Stone, or Ceramic

In some cases, you might not have access to any of these tools. The important thing to note is you need something made out of a hard material that is sharp. Remember, car windows resist blunt force, so you need something sharp to focus all the force into a really small area. Look for a sharp rock, piece of metal, or piece of ceramic to help. Even a shattered ceramic mug or dish from a nearby restaurant may do the trick.

Glass Repair & Replacement from Apple Glass – Locations in Houston & The Woodlands

If you find yourself with damaged auto glass, whether from a rock chip or from having to break your car’s window, the good news is that we are here to help. Our team at Apple Glass offers quick, affordable solutions for all your auto glass repair and replacement needs. Whether you need The Woodlands windshield repair for a small chip or need replacement glass for a broken car window, our technicians offer top quality services at budget-friendly prices. Get in touch now to get a free quote for your glass service needs.

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I will definitely recommend Apple Glass to anyone who has a glass need…

Peter Marules August 10, 2016

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Thanks! Your service and attitude was wonderful from beginning to end – You guys have the whole package!

Tom Glancy August 10, 2016

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