Beware of Windshield Bullies
What is a “Windshield Bully”? This term is used in the glass industry to identify unknown companies that use smooth-talking and often high-pressure salesmen and hustlers with questionable sales tactics and no credentials to convince unsuspecting drivers that their windshield may need to be replaced, sometimes even if it is not damaged, or offer to fix a chip or crack at the driver’s home or office. They have also been known to tell drivers that they have already called in a claim to driver’s insurance company without the driver’s approval.
These “windshield bullies” usually solicit door-to-door in residential neighborhoods, or places like suburban shopping malls, retail parking lots and car washes. They provide little if any information about the companies they represent, where they are located or the auto glass industry safety standards they follow. They usually refuse to provide even a business card.
Needless to say, insurance companies frown on these “windshield bullies” and do not condone them, even if they are not illegal in some states.
Following are some questions to ask if you are unsure of any company that solicits a windshield repair or replacement from you:
- Ask them for their business card
- Do they use original equipment glass or its equivalent?
- Does the glass and the adhesive being used meet or exceed federal and “ANSI Z 26.1” standards?
- Is there any warranty on the glass or the workmanship?
- What type of adhesive is used, is there proof that it has not expired and how soon can your car be driven safely after installation?
- Is the new windshield properly installed, flush to the frame and centered perfectly?
- Does the molding sit flat around the windshield’s circumference?
- Does the company adhere to AGRSS Auto Glass Replacement Safety Standards?
- Does the company employ trained and certified technicians?
If you think you have been targeted by a questionable windshield replacement service, file a complaint at: the Department of Consumer Affairs at 1-800-922-1594
For related stories from around the country, following are some handy links:
Beware of Windshield Harvesters (From the Post and Courier)