A Nagging Problem, Solved

Back in January, I was driving home from a friend’s birthday party in Alexandria when a massive crack appeared across my windshield. I’d had a small ding in the windshield from when a rock hit it, but (at the time having not realized it was something easily and inexpensively fixed) had done nothing about it. All the snow coming down had meant that the shift in temperature brought the imperfection to a head, and suddenly my car was “smiling” at me.

In the spring, I used birthday money to get the windshield replaced, and that was the end of the saga. Or so I thought. Soon afterwards I noticed that I could hear air getting in through one of the corners of the windshield, although only if I drove over 45mph. Was it my imagination, paranoid from the swapping out of windshields? After debating for a couple of weeks, I made Julie and Laura get in the car to verify or deny what I was hearing. Sure enough, they heard it too.

Well, twice Albert from the auto glass company came out to try and squirt a little more sealant into that corner, to see if that would do the trick. And, twice, it didn’t seem to do much. Even Albert didn’t seem convinced that it would do the trick the second time, but recommended waiting to let it fully set and see if that was that.

Windshield Now OptionalLast Friday, Albert and his assistant came out and pulled the windshield off entirely to see if the fault was the glass itself (they’d brought another one just in case) or not. As soon as they pulled it off, Albert saw where the seal was off by about 1/32nd of an inch. “Not much,” he said, “but that’s all it really takes.”

So, his assistant (who as it turned out used to live in my apartment complex) cleaned off the glass while Albert scraped off the old seal in its entirety. And I must say, it’s very odd to look at your car and there to be no windshield there whatsoever. They put a new seal down, put the glass back on, and lo and behold the problem was finally fixed. (The irony? The next day I drove down to see the friend whose birthday party I was leaving back in January when the windshield cracked in the first place. And no, it did not break again.)

The funny thing about it is that I hadn’t really realized just how much this was bothering me until I was driving around afterwards and felt a huge weight lifted off my shoulders. That quiet whistling, whooshing noise was finally gone. Driving had actually become painful while it was there, a constant reminder that something wasn’t right. It being gone is one of the best feelings out there, that there’s finally some sort of pleasure in driving my car again. I wish I’d gotten this fixed much faster, but if nothing else it’s given me a greater appreciation for the job now being done properly.

I may not have an hour (or longer) commute like many in the area, but even the 40 minutes (total) that I have to spend in the car each work day? They’ve suddenly gotten that much better.