Cruising at 100 km/h in my Superb, rock hits & cracks the windshield

We have to wait for a week for the new windshield to arrive at the service centre. The cost is estimated to be a little over Rs 30,000.

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The car crossed 10,000 kilometres today! Couldn't take a picture of the exact reading since I was not present at the time, but I was able to take one a while later.

Unfortunately, another, much less celebratory, event occurred on the same drive. Cruising at 100 km/h on the ORR, a sizeable rock made a severe impact on the windshield, cracking it immediately. I'm pretty sure this requires an immediate replacement of the windshield, so we will be taking the car to the service centre tomorrow. The major expense is unavoidable since this is a question of safety, but I am very worried about how well the replacement will be carried out. The last thing I want is for the cabin to end up sounding like a hurricane at highway speeds due to an improper fitting, or worse, water leaking into the cabin! Fingers crossed.

The crack extends all the way to the base of the windshield (even below the windshield wipers), but that part didn't show up on camera, especially in the dark. Goes to show that bad luck will sometimes find you, regardless of how careful you may be. To add insult to injury, we had just recently been considering getting a protective coating for the windshield done from Autopia!

Here's what BHPian ajmat had to say about the matter:

Good luck with that! Before you take the car back, check:

  • Wipers function properly, i.e they sweep the required area and park properly.
  • The rain sensor works properly, ensure you spray the water on the sensor and check else you are stuck with only slow and high speed and no interval wipes.

This happened when my Jetta windscreen was replaced. The first item involved a reset, the second item drove my mechanic mad but we later found that the gel pack between the windscreen and the sensor needs to be replaced!

After that, all was well.

  • Finally, check all surrounding trim, especially under the bonnet. Take pics before and compare with after!

One more thing, when the replacement is done, park it in the hot sun for a day or two to cure the adhesive bond.

Update 1

Here's a better picture taken in daylight. Note how the crack extends below the windshield wiper blade, all the way to the bottom edge of the windshield.

I tagged along for the visit to the service centre. Unfortunately, they did not have the part in stock, so we have to wait around a week (earliest estimate) for the replacement to arrive, after which it will take a day to carry out the replacement. The cost is estimated to be a little over 30,000 rupees. I have fully followed ajmat's tips above and taken pictures of all the fittings around the windshield in their current condition to compare with afterwards, something my dad also talked about. The insurance claim formalities will be carried out later.

I suppose the real issue now would be deciding what to do about a road trip to Goa which we had planned, for which we are scheduled to leave in exactly a week, assuming the replacement isn't done until then. Take the Fiesta instead? Fly? Who knows!

Update 2

It was a very pleasant surprise to hear that PPS Škoda was able to source the windshield much before the estimated time of 7-10 days! We got the car back today. The replacement was carried out yesterday and then the car was left to sit for a day to let the adhesive cure. We arrived at the service centre in the late afternoon today and the car was brought for inspection.

The fitting of the windshield was good (I compared it to the pictures I had taken earlier). There was an issue with the wipers not parking properly. This was fixed on the spot within 5 minutes. Otherwise, all was in order apart from a little fit and finish issue under the hood (revealed by the pictures); also promptly fixed. Thanks a ton, ajmat sir.

The wipers swept correctly, the rain sensor was working perfectly and so were the automatic headlamps and auto-dimming IRVM and ORVM. As usual, during billing, the machine had to be taken outside to generate the bill due to a lack of a signal inside the service centre. The payable amount consisted of a 2000 rupee deductible and 591 rupees for a thorough foam wash of the exterior (the job was very well done). The cost of the windshield was 35,172 rupees (covered by insurance).

We took the car on a highway run at 100 km/h to check if the wind noise was abnormal; thankfully it wasn't. There were no unwanted noises over bumps either. Overall, a fantastic job done by PPS Škoda!

We will be taking the Superb on a road trip from Hyderabad to Goa and also visiting Sajjangarh and Satara (Maharashtra) en route (Hyderabad-Kolhapur and then onward to Goa via Amboli Ghat). Since we leave this Saturday, we really got the car back in the nick of time. Until next time. Cheers!

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