How to Refit a Windscreen

Written by andrew latham
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How to Refit a Windscreen
Refitting your own windscreen can save you money but you may have to buy or borrow specialised tools. (frozen car image by Stephen Gibson from Fotolia.com)

A small chip on your windscreen can soon turn into a large crack, which can affect your visibility and increase the risk of suffering a car accident. If your windscreen is chipped or cracked, you should repair it as soon as possible. Refitting your car's windscreen at a garage can cost you between £104 and £195. You can save money by refitting a windscreen yourself but it requires training, experience, and in some cases, special tools supplied only by the manufacturer. Note that refitting techniques will vary by model. This guide uses the refitting of a Ford Scorpio's windscreen as an example.

Skill level:
Easy

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Instructions

  1. 1

    Remove the cowl top outer and the weatherstripping along the A-pillars of your window frame. Your car's A-pillars are the pieces of bodywork on each side of your windscreen.

  2. 2

    Drill out the rivets on the A-pillars and remove the glass trims, which hold the windscreen in place.

  3. 3

    Disconnect the heated windscreen connectors, if your model includes them. The Ford Scorpio we are using as a model has two on each side of the windscreen. Other models may have more and/or they may be located in different spots.

  4. 4

    Pry off the top windscreen weatherstrip. Take care not to damage the weatherstrip if you plan to use it again. A damaged weatherstrip can allow water ingress.

  5. 5

    Detach the weatherstripping clips and remove the support block at the base of the windscreen. Position varies by model, but is generally at the centre of the windscreen between the windscreen wipers.

  6. 6

    Cut along the edges of the windscreen with a glass cutting blade. Remove the windscreen with suction pads. You will need the help of at least one more person to remove and carry the windscreen safely.

  7. 7

    Clean the edges of the frame. Use a cutter to remove all excess adhesive. Fit spacer blocks along the frame of the windscreen and refit the headlining rubber. Replace the windscreen support block.

  8. 8

    Dry the windscreen frame with a heat gun set on warm air--around -3.89 degrees C centigrade--and prime the frame for the glass adhesive as described by the manufacturer.

  9. 9

    Apply the glass adhesive along the frame of the windscreen. Attach suction pads on the new windscreen, and with the help of another person, fit it into position. Replace the weathering clips, the weathering strips, heating connectors, rivets and glass trims in the reverse order you removed them.

Tips and warnings

  • Use suction cups to remove and replace the windscreen. You can easily cut yourself when removing the windscreen if you don't.
  • Don't try this if you don't have experience, the correct tools or someone to help you.

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