While many motorists seek auto glass repair when they notice a chip or a crack in their windshield, windshield pitting is a form of damage that often goes unaddressed. Small scratches and chips that form in your windshield can be very difficult to see with the naked eye, but they can cause extreme glare and significantly reduce your ability to see in the rain. Windshield pitting is a safety concern that needs to be corrected. To help you stay safe on the road, here's what you need to know about windshield pitting and how to solve it.

What Causes Windshield Pitting?

Pitting is typically caused by sand or dust impacting your windshield while you're driving at highway speeds. While the glass used in automobile windshield construction is very strong, it's still vulnerable to scratching. Over time, sand wears away at your windshield and causes very small pits to develop.

How Can You Tell if Your Windshield Is Pitted?

Since the pits are so small, they can be difficult to see. The easiest way to check for pitting is to shine a high-powered flashlight at your car's windshield at night, looking for tiny pits and scratches. The bright light makes it easier to see imperfections. You may also notice small white specks in your car's windshield — these are often the result of airborne debris collecting in the pits and becoming compacted.

Is Driving With a Pitted Windshield Dangerous?

Yes, a pitted windshield is a safety concern. When light refracts off of the pits instead of passing straight through your windshield, it can cause severe glare. You'll experience this most often while driving towards the setting sun. You may strain to see the road due to the severe glare, which can increase your chances of getting in to an accident.

Another downside of windshield pitting is that it reduces your visibility in the rain. Rainwater gets trapped in the pits and cracks, preventing it from draining away from your windshield. With your view obscured, driving in the rain becomes much more dangerous.

How Do You Fix a Pitted Windshield?

The best solution to fix a pitted windshield is full replacement. While some companies may offer to polish your windshield for you, it takes quite a bit of time in order to fully remove all of the pits from a windshield. Since the windshield needs to be polished down to where the pits are, polishing will also make your windshield slightly thinner and weaker. Polishing also costs about the same as a windshield replacement due to the amount of time it takes to polish a whole windshield, so replacement is typically the better option.

If you're experiencing glare from your windshield and reduced visibility in the rain, call an auto glass repair company and have your windshield inspected. It's very likely that your windshield has become pitted. Replacing a pitted windshield will improve your visibility and help you drive safely, so it's important to correct the issue in order to be a safe driver.