Most glass is tough and resilient, and can withstand any number of small impacts from inside and outside, which can be handy for anything from mishaps with furniture indoors to kids playing in the garden kicking their football against it.
However, there are those occasions when the impact is so severe or concentrated on a particular spot that a crack develops. The question is, can it be repaired or should the pane be replaced? And can a householder repair it themselves?
Left on its own, a crack can widen, rather like on a car windscreen, especially in winter when rainwater can get in and then expand in the cold, widening the crack until the pane breaks.
This process is known as freeze-thaw and while it’s an important natural process that helps release minerals form rocks to nourish plants, it is bad news for cracked glass and masonry. That is why you cannot ignore the problem. Window glass repair is not optional, it’s vital.
Of course, lots of advice is available out there on DIY methods of fixing a small crack. This can be done using temporary fixes like plastic covering or masking tape, which keeps moisture out. But a more permanent solution can be done using epoxy resin.
However, this can only really be done with small cracks, because to do the job well requires professional skills. Moreover, a larger crack is harder to fix and for an inexperienced person it can be very dangerous to try to deal with it, as there is a real risk of being badly cut by the glass.
Moreover, it is important to remember that you need a job that works, with no part of the crack being missed and the window restored to look good as new. Finally, it is also important for a specialist to assess whether the damage is too severe to fix and a new pane is needed.
Like so many issues around the house, it may seem simpler to go down the DIY route. But only by bringing in a specialist can you ensure your safety, and that the right solution is applied to the problem.