If you have a crack in your windshield and have been putting off the auto glass repair for a while, then you should absolutely invest in a repair as soon as you can. Not only is this necessary for safety reasons, but you want to keep yourself from paying a hefty fine. Keep reading to learn about whether or not it is illegal to drive with a crack in your windshield and what kind of fines are likely if you get pulled over.
Is It Illegal To Drive With A Windshield Crack?
It almost every state, it is illegal to drive your car if there is something that is obstructing your view. Basically, anything that would be considered an impairment to your vision would be problematic. However, it may not be immediately clear if a crack is an obstruction, especially if it is located on the passenger side of the vehicle. If the crack is located on the passenger's side, then it will be an obstruction if it is in the line of sight.
Sometimes a larger area is considered in terms of obstruction. This is called the windshield wiper area, or the space of the windshield glass that is cleared by your wipers. If a crack is in this space, then it may impair your vision.
Also, cracks may be considered critical if they compromise the structural integrity of the safety glass. Many states do not allow you to drive a vehicle if a crack sits within a few inches of the frame.
Chips or bullseye damage can keep you from driving your car legally too. Typically, the damage has to be one-inch or larger in diameter to be problematic.
What Kinds Of Fines Are Common?
Many states will give you a ticket for driving a vehicle that does not meet basic safety requirements. These requirements are outlined by the department of motor vehicles and include things like dark window tint, general obstructions, and non-functioning windshield wipers.
The ticket you receive will include a fine that is often $200 or more. In some states, the fine will double if it is a second occurrence or if you do not fix the crack in a timely manner.
In some states, you may be permitted to make a repair and have the fine dismissed. You will need to repair the crack and bring your receipt to your court date if this is possible in your area.
If you want to know more about windshield cracks and whether or not it is legal or safe to drive with an obstructed windshield, speak with an auto glass repair specialist.