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I had to have a rear door glass replaced and while I had it at the glass shop I asked them to also replace the windshield which and a couple of cracks in it from 2 and a half years of kicked up rocks. This new windshield seems to suck pretty bad. I see distortions when I'm turning. Am I being unreasonable to ask for a different, better quality windshield? How does this glass shop get away with installing this crap?
 

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J.O.A.T, Master of none
'14 Tacoma DC/LB
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That is suprising to me, your windshield is important for you airbags to work correctly in a crash. Isn't there some standard against cheezy glass? Isn't there some permanent marking on the glass showing that it conforms to the standard?
 

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This new windshield seems to suck pretty bad. I see distortions when I'm turning. Am I being unreasonable to ask for a different, better quality windshield? How does this glass shop get away with installing this crap?
Most glass shops sell aftermarket windshields. Which can give a distorted look but are cheaper for the person who doesn't want to pay alot. I was in the same dilemma, but I went with the Factory OEM Toyota glass because I didn't want my windshield to be distorted.

When it comes to my safety or things like windows, I would rather pay to have it OEM, if not better. It costs but I feel like it is well worth it.
 

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all auto glass sold in the US is supposed to meet the applicable safety requirements whether OE or aftermarket. But, overall quality is definitely NOT equal. The OE glass in the vehicle will have far higher cosmetic quality than any other because their standards are the highest. They will allow the least amt of scratches, chips, distortion, etc.

For aftermarket glass, PPG seems to have the best quality. I've had several PPG aftermarket windshields put in my vehicles and the quality is pretty good. Not OE for sure, but good. I always make sure to inspect it before I let them install it, and I also tell them on the phone that I'm going to do this so they should look at it first before bringing it out. I have turned them away before with a crappy windshield and made them come back with another.

If you buy a replacement glass from Toyota, it may not be the same quality as the OE glass in the vehicle, but it will be next in line.

I worked for a OE auto glass company, in windshield mfg, for ~5 yrs... the manufacturers would sometimes buy the "second" quality glass for dealer replacement parts. Keep in mind the flaws they allowed at this level were very, very minor and wouldn't be noticed by 99.999% of all people.
 

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I went through several windshields that would crack with the slightest hit of a rock. After about the 3rd one i decided to go through a different company who used PPG. Going through a company like safelite auto glass who makes there own wont be as good as OEM. Its thinner, And you do get the distortion because they are using old molds from companies like PPG. Those molds are only good for so many windsheilds before they start to warp slightly. Bottom line...you get what you pay for.
 

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have the same problem with mine, windshield has huge crack on the passenger side. I was next to another tacoma with the same exact crack on the same side. Maybe its how the glass sits in the frame?
 

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have the same problem with mine, windshield has huge crack on the passenger side. I was next to another tacoma with the same exact crack on the same side. Maybe its how the glass sits in the frame?
Nope its "glued" into the pinchweld using urethane
with a vinyl molding around the edge of the glass
to hide the rest of the pinchweld. I install autoglass
for a large company which also wholesales glass.
Offshore windshields seem to have more distortions
then PPG, Pilkington Carlite etc. As a side note Toyota
and other auto makers do not produce there own glass
one batch might be made in the USA the next in Mexico or China.
All glass reguardless of were its made must conform to
DOT regulations.
 

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some comments on the follow up posts. Typical windshields are 2.0 mm glass, 2 pieces, with a 0.7mm thick vinyl layer in the middle, giving a 4.7 mm thick windshield. This is pretty thin. 2.3 mm glass is actually cheaper than 2.0 mm glass because it is easier to make and you scrap less from breakage (higher yield). Or at least it was cheaper 12 yrs ago when I worked in glass. So, aftermarket windshields are typically not thinner than OE. The OE mfg doesn't use as much 2.3 mm glass because it is heavier, and takes longer to defrost. But, we did get Subaru to change to a 2.3 + 2.0 glass windshield to save them some $. You use the 2.3 mm glass on the outside for obvious reasons.
Windshield tooling, used in bending the glass, is very expensive and, in general, is not sold off over time. It can be used indefinitely but does require "maintenance" like everything else.
OE glass can switch suppliers, but it is not like every month Toyota puts a different brand windshield in a camry. The reason is they contract a company to make the glass and then the company, and or, Toyota will buy the tooling. Again, the tooling is expensive. And, in general, you are contracted to build the glass over the life of the vehicle. When I worked glass we were the sole supplier for every windshield we made. We could not sell our glass to the aftermarket because of our agreement. This is fairly typical for other auto parts also as the mfg often owns the tooling the part is produced on so they can control the output and insure they get it and it doesn't go to the aftermarket. The aftermarket can produce glass but they must develop their own tooling. So, they buy a few windshields and put them on a CMM and measure, and then reverse engineer the tooling.
 
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