KA-PING! What was that sound?
A stone had been thrown from a medium sized car as it accelerated and merged onto the interstate in front of our motor coach on I-5 in central California. Not an extra loud ping as the rock hit our one-piece windshield and not our first rock chip. And NOT a big deal.
We’ve had small windshield chips before and knew the basics of that.
No crater and no cracks spreading out in all directions.
No need to panic, turn to social media, or contact our insurance company.
If I had turned to social media I’m sure the feedback would run the gamut ranging from Holy Cannolli! to use clear nail polish or bubble gum it.
Later in the day we pulled into big-rig friendly, Durango RV Resort, a 5-star park located on the Sacramento River in Red Bluff.
Most sites are pull-through 70-90 feet in length and 30-35 feet wide. In addition there are 11 riverfront sites and 21 water-feature spaces (fountains); these sites have utilities on both sides of the concrete pads enabling fifth wheels and travel trailer to back onto the sites and motorhomes to drive forward maximizing the view and water features. In addition, there are a number of buddy sites.
The park is well laid out and designed. Utilities including 20/30/50-amp electric service, water, sewer, and cable TV (63 channels) and centrally located. Interior roads are paved, pads are concrete. A beautiful RV resort with friendly and courteous staff. We would return in a heartbeat. But I digress.
We woke up in the morning of April 1—and it was no April Fool’s joke—to a crack in the middle of the windshield two to three feet across. We didn’t think too much about it when the rock hit the windshield the previous day as a car accelerated to merge onto the interstate. The brutally rough California freeways may have may it worse. In the whole scheme of things it’s not the worst thing that could happen.
Windshields really are amazing things. They must meet US DOT standards to withstand an incident like this, and hold up in one piece until you can get them replaced. Windshields are required to be made of safety glass comprised of two pieces of glass with a laminated plastic layer in between that keeps everything held together.
Henry Ford actually started using this style of glass for windshield as early as 1919 when ordinary glass windshields were causing needless deaths from glass fragments.
Insurance policies can vary widely. You may have windshield coverage on your RV insurance policy. For some, it’s an add-on rider, for others it’s included at zero deductible with comprehensive coverage as mandated by state law. Check with your agent or company to know and understand your coverage.
If you’re a Florida resident and have a Florida policy with comprehensive coverage, here’s a bonus for you: State law mandates that there is no deductible applied to windshield repairs or replacements. The replacement won’t cost you anything but time!
Glass replacement can range in cost depending upon the shape, size, and availability of the windshield. Total cost of replacement might be less than your deductible, if it applies, and not worth filing. For others, it may be well worth filing a claim.
There was no need to alter our travel plans as we were staying several days at the delightful Durango RV Resort.
We started coordinating the windshield replacement by contacting our insurance company and Midtown RV, our Newmar dealer in Penticton, British Columbia, where we had previously booked a service appointment.
We opted to file through our insurance company, as we knew the windshield replacement cost would exceed our $2,500 deductible.
We had Midtown RV order the windshield replacement and set us up with an appointment at nearby Sunshine Glass and Mirror to coincide with our service appointment.
Sunshine Glass has many years experience replacing motorhome windshields and understands that RV glass is not the same as passenger vehicle auto glass and is treated differently. We have used them on several previous occasions and found their service to be prompt and efficient. Following the replacement we are advised not to extend the hydraulic jacks or drive the motorhome until the following day. It’s okay to extend the slides.
The following day we’re on the road again.
The only aspect of our travels that is interesting to others is disaster.