Your customers rely on their vehicle’s auto glass to shield them from debris while driving. Superior-quality auto glass also helps drivers maintain their visibility and drive performance.
Customers may be wondering if all glass is the same. While auto glass must adhere to certain quality standards, there are some differences between OEM and aftermarket products when it comes to auto glass quality.
OEM quality is a term often used to describe auto glass that’s the same as the windshield that was installed on your vehicle at the factory. While the actual glass may not be produced by the same manufacturer that built your car, it is fabricated according to the same exact specifications and bears the original automaker’s logo.
When it comes to replacement auto glass, OEM is the top-of-the-line option. It offers superior clarity and durability. It’s also more resistant to cracking and can bear the force of an impact better than aftermarket glass. For these reasons, many auto glass professionals recommend choosing only OEM-quality glass.
Automakers seek out licensed auto glass companies to fabricate their windshields according to specific, strict standards. Once an auto glass company has been approved, it’s given the name of OE or OEM, and its products are known as OE windshields. Since the OE process is kept confidential and proprietary, it’s difficult for outside companies to duplicate, meaning that aftermarket glass has a harder time meeting federal safety requirements.
Oftentimes, the same company that constructs the original auto glass for your manufacturer also produces OE windshields. This is a good sign that the product is being constructed by an expert, and you can be confident in the product’s quality. When purchasing OE glass, look for the stamp that says “AS1,” which indicates that it meets all US safety regulations.
If your vehicle has advanced driver assistance systems (ADAS) like automatic braking or lane departure warnings, then it’s best to stick with OEM windshields. ADAS features depend on the precision of your windshield’s fit and alignment to work properly. While some aftermarket solutions exist that can accommodate ADAS calibrations, these alternatives are usually less reliable. Talk to your installer about which type of glass is right for you. Reputable installers typically have access to high-quality aftermarket windshields and can offer options based on your insurance policy or preferences. They’ll also have the experience to make an informed decision.
Unlike OEM glass, aftermarket auto glass is not made by the same company that originally manufactured parts for your car. This can mean that aftermarket auto glass is not identical in quality to your original windshield. However, it’s important to note that aftermarket glass is still DOT-certified and safe to use in your vehicle. Depending on your insurance coverage, aftermarket auto glass may also be a less expensive option.
Many people don’t realize that different types of auto glass are on the market. They might think that if it’s from the same manufacturer as their original windshield, it must be high-quality and meet all of the OEM standards. However, most vehicle manufacturers don’t make their own auto glass; they subcontract the production to a different company. As a result, it’s common to see different types of glass in vehicles that are owned by the same person or dealership.
There’s a lot of debate in the industry about whether aftermarket auto glass is the same as OEM glass or not. Some experts say that it’s not the same quality, while others disagree. In addition, the type of aftermarket glass that you’ll find will vary from car to car, depending on how strict the automaker is with its specifications.
Another factor to consider when choosing aftermarket glass is that it’s fabricated by companies that don’t have a contract with the automaker. This means that the aftermarket glass might not meet all of the same specifications as the original glass and might be slightly different in size, thickness, curvature, or tint.
When deciding what kind of glass to buy for your car, it’s important to talk to your local glass installers to learn more about the options available. A reputable glass company will be able to provide you with a full range of options, including OEM, OEE, and aftermarket auto glass.
Most vehicle owners have no idea what to expect when replacing their windshield or other auto glass. They may hear terms like OEM, aftermarket, dealer, and premium that are used to describe the quality of the replacement glass they’re considering. It’s important for you to be able to clearly explain what these terms mean so that your customers can make informed decisions about their auto glass options.
Many vehicle manufacturers will have a contract with an auto glassmaker to supply them with windshields for all of their vehicles. This is often referred to as dealer glass because the auto glassmaker that fabricates the glass for the car manufacturer will also supply the dealerships with this same type of glass. The dealer glass will be identical to what is installed on the car, but it will not have the brand name of the automobile printed on it.
A dealer-quality windshield has the same shape, size, thickness, color, and durability as what is installed on your vehicle by a major vehicle company. It may not be branded with your car’s manufacturer, but it will meet all of the same standards as what is installed on the car.
Your clients should know that new OEM or dealer glass is superior to generic or repaired glass in the way that it meets certain quality standards that simply cannot be met with older or damaged pieces of glass. They should be aware that the best way to ensure that their windshield is installed correctly is by going with a trusted, professional repair company that uses high-quality glass and a certified installer.
Many inexperienced vehicle owners will go to their dealership for auto glass repair because they think this is the most reliable choice. They’re often wrong. Most dealerships are jack-of-all-trades and don’t specialize in any one service, so they may not be as familiar with your vehicle as an independent repair shop specializing in auto glass. Choosing an auto glass repair company with the right reputation for quality is important, even if you have to pay your own deductible or rely on insurance coverage. You should choose a repair shop with a good reputation for its work, excellent customer reviews, and the ability to install your vehicle’s auto glass quickly and accurately.
Regardless of where the auto glass is made, there is a standard that is regulated by an industry group that determines quality. That standard is known as the AGRSS (Auto Glass Repair and Safety Standards), which sets the minimum requirements for installation and performance. Having your windshield repaired according to these specifications will help ensure that the glass is safe and that the bonding process is done properly.
Using an OEM-quality windshield will also mean that you will be able to have your insurance company cover it completely. This is a big benefit for vehicle owners who don’t want to pay out of pocket for the repairs.
Non-OEM windshields may be cheaper to purchase, but they won’t come with the same peace of mind as an OEM windshield. This is especially true when it comes to ADAS systems such as Lane-Keeping Assist and Pre-Collision Assist with Automatic Braking, which will only function correctly if the windshield has been replaced with the same original type of glass.
Many companies claim to be “certified” auto glass shops but don’t always provide proof. The best way to verify that a company is providing the quality of service you need is by asking to see their AGRSS certification.
A certified technician will be able to demonstrate that they have met the requirements set by AGRSS, which means that they will know how to properly install the correct glass for your specific vehicle. This will prevent problems like stress cracks, water leaks, or distortion.
The type of auto glass can vary in how clear it is and how much shatter resistance it has. There is also a difference in thickness which can affect sound insulation and strength. Some companies use thinner glass than the original factory part as this can decrease cost, but the overall quality of the auto glass can be affected.
Another aspect to consider is whether an extended warranty backs the auto glass. Most reputable, certified shops will be able to offer you an extended warranty on the work they do.