6 Things You Should Know About A Windshield Spider Crack

windshield spider crack

A spider crack on your windshield can be an alarming sight. These types of cracks have a radial pattern. While small spider cracks may not seem like a big issue at first, they can quickly spread and become a safety hazard if left untreated. Knowing how to identify spider cracks and what to do about them can help you avoid more extensive windshield damage. Here are 6 things you should know about a windshield spider crack.

6 Important Things to Know About Windshield Spider Crack

1. What Causes Spider Cracks?

Windshield Spider Crack

Spider cracks are usually caused by a strong impact on the windshield. This impact sends out shockwaves through the glass, causing it to crack in a radial pattern. Common causes of spider cracks include:

  • Rocks or debris kicked up while driving that hit the windshield
  • An object falling on the windshield with force, like a tree branch
  • Hail striking the windshield
  • Very cold temperatures cause the windshield glass to contract and crack
  • A manufacturing defect or impurity in the windshield glass

The point of impact is called the “epicenter” of the crack. The cracks then spread outward from this origin point.

2. Spider Cracks Can Spread Quickly

Spreading Windshield spider crack

One of the biggest dangers of a spider crack is that it can grow and spread very quickly across the windshield. This is because the glass is already compromised from the initial impact. As you continue driving, vibrations and stress on the windshield cause the cracks to lengthen and branch off even more.

What starts as a small, barely noticeable crack one day can turn into a major crack spanning the entire windshield just a day or two later. That’s why it’s so important to get spider cracks repaired right away before they have a chance to expand.

3. They Become a Safety Hazard

safety hazards of windshield spider crack

As a spider crack spreads, it progressively weakens the structural integrity of the windshield. At first, only the outer glass layer was damaged. But over time, the cracks spread to the inner plastic layer as well. Once both layers are compromised, the windshield is significantly weakened.

Large spider crack networks that span the windshield impair visibility and make it harder for you to see out properly. This creates a major safety issue. Cracks also make the windshield more prone to shattering in a collision. Getting the cracks repaired quickly prevents these hazards.

4. Repair Options Depend on Severity

windshield spider crack resin

There are a few different options for fixing a spider crack, depending on the extent of the damage:

  • Windshield repair resin: This liquid plastic resin can effectively fill and seal small cracks and prevent them from spreading. The resin cures with UV light. This is the easiest and most affordable option.
  • Full windshield replacement: If the cracks are too large or cause optical distortions, a full windshield replacement may be required. This is more expensive but necessary in severe cases.
  • Partial windshield replacement: For damage localized in one area, just that section of the windshield can be replaced instead of the entire thing. This costs less than full replacement.

A reliable Car Glass Fixer can assess the severity of your spider cracks and recommend the best repair method. Acting quickly makes resin repair more likely to be effective.

5. Insurance May Cover Repairs

insurance may covers windshield spider crack

Most standard auto insurance policies include comprehensive and collision coverage that covers windshield damage with a low deductible, like $50 or $100. Even just a $100 deductible is far less than the actual repair cost.

Be sure to contact your insurance company and file a claim as soon as you notice a spider crack so you can take advantage of this coverage. Keep in mind that full windshield replacement often requires special approval from the insurer.

6. Prevention is Ideal

windshield spider crack replacing

The best way to handle spider cracks is to prevent them in the first place. Here are some tips to help avoid windshield damage:

  • Have your windshield replaced with advanced safety glass that is more resistant to cracks.
  • Install a protective cover over the windshield when parked outdoors for extended periods.
  • Stay back from vehicles on gravel roads to avoid loose rocks striking the glass.
  • Fill in any minor chips in the windshield right away to prevent cracks from forming.
  • Avoid pouring warm water on a windshield in frigid weather as the temperature difference can cause cracks.
  • Make sure your windshield is installed properly by a professional to avoid defects.
  • Inspect the windshield regularly for any small cracks that should be repaired immediately before they spread.


Spider cracks may look like only a minor annoyance at first. However, these windshield cracks can rapidly expand into major visibility and safety issues if ignored. Knowing how to recognize spider cracks early and getting them repaired right away is crucial. To acknowledge this, you should be familiar with the above mentioned 6 things you should know about a windshield spider crack.

With quick action and insurance assistance, spider cracks don’t have to turn into a costly windshield replacement. Being aware of prevention strategies can also help avoid the nuisance of windshield cracks down the road.

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