Maybe you just moved to Texas and need to register your car in the state. Or maybe it’s just that time of year for your registration renewal. This means getting a safety inspection of your car to get your car registered. However, what happens if you have a chip or crack in your windshield? Do you need Houston windshield repair before your inspection? Is the inspector going to fail you for the state of your windshield? Maybe. We’ll explore this question along with other common questions regarding car registrations and windshields (including what to do with your registration sticker and EZ TAG after a windshield replacement) in this article.
Do I Need to Get Houston Windshield Repair Before Annual Safety Inspection?
If you have a chip or crack in your windshield, you might wonder if you need to schedule Houston windshield repair services before getting your car inspected. In some cases, yes. However, in other cases you may be able to wait until after your inspection. It really depends on the damage and location.
According to the Texas Department of Public Safety, windshields are not part of the safety inspection. That means you won’t fail just because your windshield is damaged. However, there are other issues that can make you fail your inspection for a damaged windshield, including whether it impacts the windshield wipers or your visibility.
Get Houston Windshield Repair if it Affects Your Windshield Wipers
One of the first things to check if you have windshield damage is whether it affects your windshield wipers. During a Texas vehicle inspection, the wipers must be in good condition, undamaged, and make even contact across the glass surface to help remove rain. Sometimes windshield cracks make your windshield wipers fail this test. In these cases, you should get Houston windshield repair before your annual inspection.
The problem with windshield damage is that it can actually catch the delicate rubber on the windshield wiper blade. This can cause it to tear or become rough, which may cause the inspector to fail your car. Also, some severe cracks can make the glass of your windshield change in curvature, making it more concave or convex. If this is happening to your windshield, then the wipers probably won’t make smooth, even contact, resulting in a failed inspection.
You Need Houston Windshield Repair if Damage Affects Visibility
Another reason you may need to fix your auto glass in Houston before an inspection is if the damage affects your visibility. While Texas laws don’t say much about your windshield’s condition, it does note that it’s illegal to drive a car where you cannot see properly due to obstructions. Common obstructions include things like stickers, phone mounts, dash cams, or any other objects that make it hard to see out of your windshield clearly.
Many also interpret this to mean cracks and chips that interfere with visibility through the windshield. Chips and cracks on the driver’s side of the windshield do absolutely make it hard to see, which can negatively affect your driving, including reaction times and ability to notice potential road hazards. So, if the damage is in your line of sight or otherwise interferes with your driving, then you should get Houston windshield repair ASAP for both safety and to pass your inspection.
Other Reasons to Get Houston Windshield Repair
So, what if your windshield doesn’t interfere with your safety inspection? Does that mean you simply don’t get glass repair in Houston for the windshield? Absolutely not. You should still get repairs as soon as possible to keep your car safe.
Your windshield is an essential part of safety for your car. For one, it stops things from hitting you in the face and getting in your eyes while you drive. It’s literally in the name: windshield. We take this for granted when we drive, but imagine trying to drive with dust constantly in your eye, or while you get pelted by gravel pieces from the road.
Driving with a cracked or chipped windshield also poses some problems. The first is that any bump or change in temperature can make the damage grow and may affect your visibility. Also, the windshield won’t be as strong. The main point of Houston windshield repair is to strengthen the damaged area. A weak windshield puts you at risk in case of an accident. It can increase the risk of a shattered windshield and may also not be able to withstand the same amount of impact in case you fly forward toward the windshield. Therefore, there are many reasons to repair your auto glass in Houston even if it’s not required by law.
Houston Windshield Repair vs. Replacement
Now you know some of the reasons for Houston windshield repair and when you may need to repair your windshield to pass a safety inspection, let’s talk about the difference between repair and replacement. Windshield repair involves our glass technicians filling the damaged area in with special resins. Windshield replacement is removing your old windshield and installing a new one. Repairs typically cost less, but sometimes aren’t an option for the type of damage you have.
You may need a windshield replacement if the damage is larger than the size of a dollar bill, if the damage penetrates all the layers of glass, or if the damage is right in the driver’s line of sight. In these instances, injecting resin likely won’t help. If the damage is large or deep, then the resin isn’t enough to provide the structural stability your windshield needs for safety. When the damage is front and center for the driver, then the resin may leave a slight blur that can continue to affect their visibility (the resin dries clear, but it’s not perfect, which is a concern for being able to see clearly).
What Happens to My Registration Sticker After Replacing the Auto Glass in Houston?
While we’re on the subject of windshields and car registration, another common question we get is what happens to the registration sticker on your old windshield? According to the Texas DMV, you can get a replacement registration sticker. You will need to fill out a replacement application and it will cost you about $6.50 ($6 for the new sticker and $0.50 as an admin fee for updating the system with the new sticker info).
However, in many cases our expert auto glass technicians can take the sticker off and transfer it to the new windshield. Of course, this really depends on the sticker condition. However, usually we can heat up the sticker and scrape it off very carefully before placing it on the new windshield.
Can I Also Transfer My EZ TAG to My New Windshield?
So, what about your EZ TAG? If you replace your windshield, you might wonder if you can transfer it to your new windshield. Unfortunately, probably not. According to the Harris County Toll Road Authority, your EZ TAG has a chip that is typically damaged during removal. Therefore, they recommend getting a new TAG when you replace your windshield or buy a new car.
Affordable Glass Repair in Houston from Apple Glass
When you need expert glass repair in Houston, choose our team at Apple Glass. We offer fast, reliable glass solutions for you. Whether you need repairs for your auto glass, residential glass, or commercial glass, you can trust our team for top quality services and budget-friendly prices. Contact us now for a free quote!