A cracked or otherwise damaged windshield is dangerous for several reasons. Not only can it impair the driver’s vision, but it can also endanger all passengers during an accident.
A crack or chip can easily compromise your windshield’s structural integrity and shouldn’t be taken lightly regardless of whether your car is new or old. In fact, in many parts of the world, there are laws that govern the condition of a windshield.
In Ontario, Canada’s largest province, for instance, lawmakers included the following specifically with regard to windshield cracks when they updated the used car inspection standards in 2016:
- A crack cannot be more than 50 millimeters in any area that the windshield wipers cover
- The crack cannot obstruct the driver’s view, no matter how big or little it is.
In the latter instance, inspectors may give some leeway for hairline or very small chips or cracks, but don’t count on it.
Many vehicle owners must deal with this aspect of the new inspection law, because the windshield absorbs more wear and tear than almost any other part of the vehicle. Today’s high-tread tires give drivers better control than ever before, and they also toss up more pebbles and other road debris than ever before. This junk remains suspended in midair for several seconds, just waiting for driver like you to plow into it at full speed.
All told, it’s quite remarkable that vehicle windshields last very long at all. When yours suffers damage, what can an service do?
Repair Or Replace?
Tiny chips, hairline cracks, and other such flaws are usually fairly easy to repair for less than $100. Many services offer mobile repair options that can repair your windshield on your lunch hour at work, so there is even less reason to delay such a call.
Typically, if the crack or chip is smaller than a dollar bill, repair is usually in order. But there are some exceptions:
- Chip or crack directly in the driver’s line of sight,
- A flaw along the edge of the windshield, or
- More than three small cracks.
In these instances, the entire windshield probably needs to be replaced. That sounds like a headache, but the longer you put off the problem, the worse it gets and the more painful the fix becomes. Such a fix is pretty much inevitable. As mentioned earlier, cracks must be fixed or else the car will flunk inspection. Moreover, in many jurisdictions, cracked windshields often merit traffic tickets.
Making The Right Choice
If repair is an option, it’s almost always the right choice, for a number of reasons:
- Cost: As mentioned, the cost is often negligible. Moreover, to encourage their customers to take the less expensive option, many auto insurance companies waive deductibles in windshield repair cases.
- Convenience: Repairs very rarely take more than an hour.
- Eco-Friendly: Discarded windshields go into landfills, and as glass is not biodegradable, they will stay there forever.
Usually, the repair technician rinses the windshield clean, injects a specialized resin into the chip or crack, and then polishes the area.
If warranted, it’s very important to proceed with windshield replacement. In addition to visibility, the windshield withstands during a rollover crash. If it’s weak, it cannot protect the way it should, leaving the vehicle occupants at risk. There are precise safety standards for the entire process, and experienced auto glass replacement professionals follow these guidelines to a T.
If your windshield needs attention, don’t make the problem worse by putting it off.
Traffic Violations: How Online Traffic School Can Help You Meet Your Requirements
Everybody hates that feeling of being behind the wheel and noticing flashing lights in the rearview mirror. Let’s face it, sometimes that extra push on the gas or the stop sign you rolled through has consequences.
Many people choose traffic school as a way to remove points from their license, while those with more serious offenses require intensive driver safety courses due to court orders. Whatever the reason, online traffic school can be the best way to meet your requirements and regain any lost driving privileges.
What You Need to Know About A Point System?
Using Florida as an example, when you receive a ticket, a set number of points are added to your license depending on the offense. After getting the ticket, you have thirty days to pay it (your state or province might differ) and elect to attend a driver improvement school to keep the points off your record. You could also go to court and contest the ticket.
According to the (FLHSMV), the following point accumulations result in a suspension of driving privileges:
- 12 points in 12 months results in a 30-day suspension.
- 18 points in 18 months (including the points from the 12 point suspension) results in a 3 month suspension.
- 24 points in 36 months (including the 12 and 18 point suspension points) results in a one year suspension.
Points are also given for out-of-state traffic violations.
Since many count for three to four points, they add up fast. If your license is suspended or close to it, you should consider traffic school to remove points from your driving record. You could complete these classes once every 12 months up to five times in your lifetime. Advanced Driver Improvement Courses may be necessary if your license is already suspended or it is ordered by the court.
Why Choose Online Traffic School?
Online schools are a convenient way to reclaim those driver’s license points, prevent insurance premium increases, and fulfill court orders. Instead of attending a brick and mortar school, you have the opportunity to complete these classes wherever you have an internet connection, doing so at your own pace any time of the day or night. Even better, you don’t have to complete the course all at once — you can save your progress and return to the class as it fits your busy life.
Courses like the are approved by the State of Florida and the FLHSMV. They offer 4, 8, or 12 hour driver improvement classes depending on your particular needs or court orders. Once you complete the course, the American Safety Council automatically notifies the DMV to get the points taken off your driving record.
So, you made a few mistakes behind the wheel. This doesn’t mean you can’t learn from the experiences and move on with your life. Completing online traffic school courses is an affordable, convenient way to put traffic violations behind you and get back on the road.
Why Might Your Car Insurance Premiums Increase?
If your insurer has prompted you to renew your insurance, you might baulk at seeing your premium increase for another year of coverage. Insurance premiums can rise for a number of complex reasons that could have you scratching your head.
Sadly, if you are a UK driver, those premiums are likelier to rise than fall, as of £827 on average, reports the Express. Keep reading to find out the reasons why your rate might have increased.
You are hit by compensation payout increases
Last year, Insurance Premium Tax was hiked from 10% to 12%, partly due to whiplash and false compensation claims. The Ogden rate, which is used in calculating compensation payable to people who have suffered injury from a car crash, was also slashed.
This means insurers need to make further compensation outlay to car crash victims, and it’s customers who help them foot the bill.
You were caught using a phone while driving
Last year also saw the introduction of laws that doubled the penalty for motorists caught using their phones while driving. Today, such motorists would be slapped with a £200 fine and six penalty points; however, they could potentially also face an eye-watering increase in insurance premiums.
According to , these premiums could rise by as much as 40% when an offender is given the option to renew their policy… if they are given that option at all.
You have made a “no-fault” claim
Frustrating though it may be, your insurance could rise in cost if you have made a claim resulting from an accident for which you weren’t to blame.
Let’s assume that you have crashed into another car simply because, at a junction, its driver pulled out in front of you. Your insurer won’t deem you at fault for this accident but might still increase your premium because, statistics are to be believed, you are likelier to end up in another crash.
You have recently moved home
Moving to a new place or locale can be exciting, but even something so innocuous could wreak havoc on your premiums. For example, your new locale might have many more instances of car theft, giving your insurer good reason to send those premiums rocketing.
Taking up residence in a newly built house can be costly, too, but for an unexpected reason. As that home may not yet have been registered on your insurer’s database, the insurer may be hindered in their ability to accurately discern what risk the area poses to your vehicle.
As a result, you could be quoted premiums that seem strangely high considering what you personally know about the area. The the example of one driver, Doug Welch, who after moving to a Northamptonshire-based newly-built house, was quoted a renewal premium of £1,117 — nearly three times the £464 he had been paying with the same insurer!
The insurer later admitted to having access to little data about the area and decided to hold off charging Mr. Welch the full increase.
Your voluntary excess is too high
While your policy is likely to have come with a minimum excess when you first took out the insurance, you might have added a “voluntary excess” in an attempt to lower how much your insurer would need to pay for a claim – and, thus, also reduce your premium.
However, paradoxically, an excessive increase in the voluntary excess can add more expense to the policy. Using an insurance broker like can help you avoid getting caught out by nasty charges.
How To Get Started With Adult Driver’s Education Courses
Many people learned to drive when they were teenagers, but some never got the chance. Others took the necessary classes but didn’t pass, never attempting them again. Teenagers also aren’t as eager these days to learn to drive or own a car thanks to improved public transport and the rising cost of living, meaning there is an increasing number of generation Y waiting until adulthood before learning to drive or avoiding driving altogether.
Fortunately, cars aren’t going anywhere, at least not in the foreseeable future. Family- and work-life often necessitates a car. And for all the prior generation for societal reasons, it’s about time you buckled up for a new experience — it’s never too late to learn to drive.
Driving teacher Tim Danter says learning to drive as an adult can be more difficult, noting:
“There is definitely more anxiety. Sixteen-year-olds think they’re bulletproof; they have little fear. Adults are more mature, but they’ve also got more life experience and therefore understand that driving a car takes a lot of responsibility and a lot of care. That can make them more hesitant.”
Reflexes and coordination may also be diminished depending on the driver’s age.
Online Driver’s Education
Despite this challenge, the good news is that the DMV (for those in America) makes the process somewhat easier for adults. If you are over 18 and now seeking to get your driver’s permit for the first time, you can probably get your education online.
Driver’s education covers traffic rules, road safety and other relevant information. If you that’s provided online, you can learn from the comfort of your own home or office. The lessons can be completed at your own pace, at any time of day and on any device with an internet connection. They often include animation, videos and case studies to help you prepare in an engaging manner. Online driver’s education is also more affordable than traditional classes.
Even if you already know how to drive, adult driver’s education classes can still help you sharpen your skills. Taking one may even qualify you for a discount on your car insurance.
Who Needs Driver’s Ed?
The majority of U.S. states require at least some potential drivers to take adult driver’s education. However, they have different rules regarding people required to take the class. For example, in , it’s mandatory to complete a driver’s course if you are between 18 and 24. In Illinois, an adult driver’s education course is required if you are between the ages of 18 and 20, have never completed any kind of Driver’s Ed course, and are applying for a first-time state driver’s license.
The states also differ on whether you have to take a mandated number of behind-the-wheel lessons before taking the practical test.
Learning to drive as an adult can be difficult but not impossible. In fact, it is very doable. Your nerves and possible reduced reflexes might prove to be a hindrance, but at least you won’t have to sit in a classroom. There are many driving schools out there, but you shouldn’t just enroll in the first one you come across. Make sure the one you choose is approved by your respective government so that you get the necessary credit(s) for completing a course.