DIY glass chip or crack repair
Examine the extent of your window crack to determine whether to repair it yourself or hire a professional. (Photo courtesy of Angie's List member Xavier I. of Carmel Valley, Calif.)
Glass easily chips or cracks when objects are accidentally dropped onto or knocked against it. Fortunately, cracked glass repair is easy with a few simple materials and a few minutes of your time.
If you have recently chipped a glass table, shelf or other piece of furniture, consider the following do-it-yourself, step-by-step process to repair cracked glass:
1. Before repairing glass
Before you begin the repair process, you should first evaluate whether or not the glass is worth repairing in the first place. If the glass has suffered significant damage, it should be turned over to the hands of a professional glass repair company.
If it's a less valuable piece of glass, such as a glass inlay or insert in a coffee table, it may be worthwhile to replace it. A local glass repair or custom glass company should be able to provide you with a new piece of glass that matches the appearance, style and dimensions of the damaged one at a relatively low cost.
2. Invest in a glass repair kit
Since glass tables and shelves have smooth, flat surfaces, chipped glass repair is easily done with a window glass crack repair kit. You can purchase these kits at an auto parts store, at the automotive section of a major retail store and in some hardware stores.
3. Evaluate and clean the glass
First, you should make sure that you have enough resin and bridges with your glass repair kit to repair all of the cracks or chips in the glass. Once you have determined that you have enough supplies, thoroughly and carefully clean the glass to remove any excess debris.
It's also important that you practice extreme caution: wear gloves and use a thick cleaning cloth to avoid cutting yourself on the sharp edges. Make sure to let the glass fully dry after cleaning before moving on to step four.
4. How to repair glass
Paying close attention to the instructions provided with window glass crack repair kit, apply the appropriate amount of vinyl or resin to the broken piece of glass. The instructions should also show you how to apply the bridge to the cracked glass.
Related article: How to Repair Scratched Glass
The bridges that come in your repair kit will look like suction cups with screws coming through the center, and will have metal bars attached to the top of each one. You'll want to apply a fair amount of pressure to the crack according to the filler being used.
5. Clean up
Following the repair, you will notice some excess vinyl or resin on the glass. Use a razon blade to remove any remaing vinyl or resin.
You will have to wait a certain period of time after the repair has been completed before you can remove the excess material. However, this varies depending on the type of kit you purchased, so make sure to consult the instructions regarding the appropriate time frame.
Although some repair projects require nothing more than the application of the steps above, others may be more complex. If you haven't had proper training, it may be best to consult an experienced and qualified residential glass repair professional to replace the glass or help ensure the most effective and long-lasting repair.
Editor's note: This is an updated version of an article originally posted on Jan. 19, 2012