Replacement windshield advice?

AZjeff

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While traveling in the RAV4 yesterday we got a stone thrown into the windshield from the car ahead that instantly cracked. Weird since you can barely see a mark from the stone and it was small enough to be invisible coming at us. I've got 100% glass replacement so that's not a problem but I want OEM quality glass, not some wavy distorted junk. Are there any brands of glass as good as OEM or do I need to push for that? Because of previous occupations I'm probably more aware of distortions than some and won't have it. thanks.
 
It may depend more on the make/model vehicle, but I've had good luck with Pilkington. Main thing is to avoid Safelite or chain places in general. Find a good local mom/pop glass shop.
 
On my third windshield the shop installed Fuyao glass. This is a Chinese company manufacturing here in the US. I was skeptical but the glass is very well made and has no visible waviness even in the corners. I am very happy with the quality to be honest.
 
Originally Posted By: JTK
It may depend more on the make/model vehicle, but I've had good luck with Pilkington. Main thing is to avoid Safelite or chain places in general. Find a good local mom/pop glass shop.
Agreed +1 Find a Mom and Pop shop first. See what they say. I'll bet you a chocolate shake they bring up Pilkington.
 
The Safelite replacement I had for a domestic was as good if not better than original. The one I got for a Lexus I was not happy with but I didn't drive it after that anyway.
 
I just went through this, the place I called upgraded me to OEM glass at no charge, I was paying out of pocket.
 
Originally Posted By: dishdude
I just went through this, the place I called upgraded me to OEM glass at no charge, I was paying out of pocket.
I looked up the name on the glass that went on my domestic and it was the company that supplies the OEM glass. As with all parts, sometimes you get the same as OEM part when buying under an aftermarket name.
 
My insurance company charges A $100.00 Deductible for a new windshield. I call Safelight.
 
I've been using Safelight for years because of they're lifetime installation problem gurantee. Had a windshield molding cine loose years later, they came back at no charge and fixed it.
 
Thanks for the replies. We have 0 deductible glass coverage with State Farm and I'll pay extra if I have to to not see flaws. There's an indie glass guy near work, I'll stop in and see what he has to say. Dishdude, no glass coverage in Arizona? I thought everyone has it here on newer cars. We traveled the 17/101 to Glendale and back with no backups but got the windshield cracked. Can't win.
 
Pilkington has been garbage in my experience. They pit really easily, and had one in the Trailblazer that's as wavy.
 
Originally Posted By: AZjeff
Thanks for the replies. We have 0 deductible glass coverage with State Farm and I'll pay extra if I have to to not see flaws. There's an indie glass guy near work, I'll stop in and see what he has to say. Dishdude, no glass coverage in Arizona? I thought everyone has it here on newer cars. We traveled the 17/101 to Glendale and back with no backups but got the windshield cracked. Can't win.
I know! I thought I had it and when I called they gave me the bad news. I've added it on since.
 
Ive been out of the glass business for a while, but pilkington/LOF and PGW used to have their logos put on xyg (chinesse made) windshields for some of their part numbers. Some were okay, not great. Some were pretty poor. The d.o.t. number determines who made the glass. XYG used to be dot 563. OEM from the dealer parts dept. would almost guarantee a quality part but is often expensive. Ive never been disappointed with Guardian, Saint Gobain, Carlite/Carlex, AGC or Nippon brand windshield. Some of the Chinesse made brands (Fuyao, Benson) were making improvments in fit and quality when I left the industry. I think Fuyao (fy) is an OEM for Hyundai and Kia.
 
Here's my recent windshield thread that has some relevant information: https://bobistheoilguy.com/forums/ubbthreads.php/topics/4607738/3 - today's aftermarket glass is following the path of all aftermarket parts. Chinese mfg. infiltration and the traditional high quality U.S. companies are changing (outsourcing,downsizing, new management, etc.)to the point it is difficult to assess their quality. It seems that the Chinese companies are stepping up to the plate regarding better quality. So, you cannot base judgement of the market from 5 to 8 years ago. - Safelight no longer manufactures their own glass, so they are now just an installer like everyone else. - Traffic/lane sensors located behind the windshield require OE quality level AND recalibration of sensors is mandatory (and difficult). - If you can get OE glass at no extra charge, that is the logical choice. Otherwise, most (not all) times you will pay 2 to 4 times more for glass labeled with your car brand. - Finding a quality installer is as difficult as finding a good body shop. The result is only as good as the guy putting it in. I ended up with Fuyao glass this time and it is distortion free and the Michigan based installer (Hendersons) did a great job.
 
Originally Posted By: doitmyself
- Traffic/lane sensors located behind the windshield require OE quality level AND recalibration of sensors is mandatory (and difficult).
Safelite charges $300 for this and it is mandatory, they will not install the windshield without it. Originally I was going to use them, but after they came out with the wrong windshield and realized there was a camera the price went up $350. There was no way I was paying Safelite for that, so I found another place that just put the windshield in. I figured if it needed calibrated, I would go to the dealer - it sure couldn't cost more than Safelite and at least they'd be using a factory scan tool instead of some aftermarket thing. The replacement windshield had a bracket preinstalled that the camera sits in, so I can't figure out why it would need to be recalibrated.
 
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