When most people break or chip broken glass, they assume that it cannot be fixed. In some cases, they’re right; it’s easy to end up with glass that is broken beyond repair and needs to be replaced. And yet, that doesn’t happen as often as you might think. While broken glass isn’t exactly easy to fix, there are times when it can be done.
Knowing When Glass is Worth Fixing
As much as you might hate to admit it, not all broken glass is worth fixing. Even if something can be fixed, it might cost too much time and money to be worth it. If you have a priceless work of art that has been in your family for generations, then by all means take the time to fix it. If it is just a window pane or a windshield, it isn’t worth your time. Go somewhere that will sell you a replacement, have it installed, and move on.
The same goes for anything that will be too expensive to fix. If the cost of fixing something is going to be close to or equal to the cost of replacing it, then go ahead and buy a replacement. You can be sure that anything you buy will be in good shape, something that cannot be said about something that has been broken and repaired.
Get a Glass Repair Kit
If you want to repair your own broken glass, you need to have a glass repair kit on hand. These can be purchased at most hardware or automotive stores. They are best suited for chips and tiny cracks, but larger clean breaks can sometimes be repaired as well. These kits include things like toothpicks and tiny brushes to remove small bits of broken glass, an epoxy glue that often includes a resin and a hardener, a filler for cracks and chips, bridges to hold glass pieces together while the epoxy and resin are drying, and a cleaner to remove any excess glue when the job is done. There are different repair kits for different types of jobs, so make sure you buy the one that is suited to your situation.
Before you start repairing glass, clean out any smaller chips and bits that cannot be saved. Some of these will be the size of grains of sand, so use a brush to clean them away thoroughly. Use heavy work gloves and a thick cleaning cloth to avoid cutting yourself on broken glass.
If you’re repairing a crack or a chip, apply the appropriate amount of resin to the area and use the bridges that come with your repair kit to hold everything together. Follow the instructions on the kit closely for best results, and give your glass the approrpriate amount of time to dry. Gluing two pieces of broken glass together will be more difficult, but it can be done as long as you follow the instructions on your glass kit closely. Breaks will require more pressure from the bridges and a longer drying time. Do not handle the glass as it is drying.
Know When To Call a Professional
Even though you can make minor glass repairs on your own, there will be some jobs that are too big, too complicated, or too unsafe for a DIY job. If you ever feel like a glass repair job is too big for you to handle, contact a glass repair specialist near you. They will have the equipment and training to take care of things that will be beyond the skill and knowledge of the average homeowner, so find one near you today in case you have to make emergency repairs.