When it comes to windshield repairs, addressing the issue early is always the smart move. Intact windshields keep debris from entering your vehicle, keep your vision clear while driving, and in the event of an accident, even help your vehicle's roof from falling in.
Therefore, scheduling a repair should be a priority should the need arise.
But when it comes to windshield repair, you’re going to run into a few different types of auto glass to choose from. And depending on your budget and insurance policies, one type of glass may be a more suitable choice than another. That’s why Simbol Auto Glass in Ann Arbor, MI has put together this short guide to help you determine which kind of windshield glass is the best choice for you.
An Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEM) windshield is the same exact windshield your car originally had factory-installed. While OEM windshields aren’t always made by the same company that created and installed your car’s original windshield, replacement OEM windshields are identical in color, thickness, tint, and durability.
Since this type of windshield glass is manufactured according to the car maker’s strict specifications, OEM windshields will easily fit into your car. Furthermore, these windshields are certified by the Department of Transportation, meaning that you can expect your replacement windshield to be safe, high-quality glass.
Although OEM windshields are typically more expensive than aftermarket windshields, they are usually covered by the vehicle manufacturer’s warranty. However, OEM windshields can be harder to find, and if your warranty is expired, insurance companies may not cover the cost. Additionally, if your original windshield was of low quality to begin with, an OEM replacement will be of the same quality.
Original Equipment Equivalent (OEE) windshields are less expensive alternatives to OEM windshields. These are generic windshields that usually offer the same level of quality an OEM provides. OEE glass is often fabricated in the same assembly lines as OEM windshields and comes with a cheaper price tag because they don’t have a manufacturer’s branding.
But it’s important to keep in mind that OEE glass may have slightly different colors or thicknesses than your original windshield, and the glass can sometimes be made from inferior materials.
Aftermarket windshield glass is another alternative to an OEM windshield. Aftermarket windshields can look similar to the factory-installed windshield, but just like OEE glass, may have varying tint, color, thickness, build quality, as well as durability. In addition, aftermarket windshields may not always perfectly fit your vehicle’s windshield components, leading to air leaks or noise that can negatively impact your driving experience.
However, aftermarket windshields may have the potential to actually be an upgrade for your vehicle. If your original OEM windshield was of poor quality, an aftermarket windshield could provide better resistance to cracks or chips. What’s more, some aftermarket windshields offer better durability than the original manufacturer’s. Thus increasing the safety of your vehicle in the event of a car crash or accident.
And, a more tinted window can even help reflect heat and UV rays away from your car which can keep your upholstery from fading, and maintain a cooler interior during the warmer summer months.
Aftermarket windshields are also typically more affordable than OEM windshields and are more readily available. Though, the higher the quality of the aftermarket glass, the pricer the windshield will be. This means some aftermarket windshields may exceed the price tag of OEM windshields.
Deciding between an OEM, OEE, or aftermarket windshield can feel overwhelming. But when you contact us at Simbol Auto Glass, we can help you make the best choice for your budget and needs. And when you’re ready to replace or repair your windshield, you can count on us for a quality job. Contact us today for a free quote.