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Old 03-07-2016, 12:48 PM   #1
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Windshield replacement

To reduce heat buildup in the bus, I was strongly considering getting the 3M crystalline window film installed before summer. Now I'm glad I didn't go through with it. On the way to FL a big rock hit the windshield and now there is a 12" crack. Before the incident I had not noticed that a Sprinter has a really big windshield (and probably expensive).
Anyone had any success with the "salvage" repair procedures or should we just get windshield replaced? Any advice on brands? Thanks
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Old 03-07-2016, 01:59 PM   #2
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If you look closely, you'll see the windshield has an embedded heating element so fine you can hardly see it. And that makes it very expensive to replace. However, if that element is damaged, it may no longer heat the screen and you lose the ability to defog the screen quickly. Won't affect defogging with the the blower of course. Insurance usually covers a total windshield replacement.
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Old 03-07-2016, 02:11 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by UKDUDE View Post
If you look closely, you'll see the windshield has an embedded heating element so fine you can hardly see it.
Not true on units made before 2013. No windshield heating elements on the older vans.

Check insurance coverage first, and if they'll replace it on their dime, replace it. If not then I'd consider an in-situ repair of the crack, with the expectation that it might or might not be effective. If it works, you've saved a ton of money, and if it doesn't, you haven't lost much by trying.
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Old 03-07-2016, 02:29 PM   #4
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Mine is on its 3rd windshield.

It happens.


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Old 03-07-2016, 03:10 PM   #5
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I've had small chips repaired before they cracked and they never cracked.

Curious as to how a crack is repaired as the ads say repair before the chip turns into a crack. Inquiring minds want to know.
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Old 03-07-2016, 06:02 PM   #6
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Windshield replacement

My view - if you drive you will get windshield damage. I now have four chips in mine now after 65,000 miles. The first two were in Alaska on paved roads. Darn gravel trucks get you. Also had same thing happen in Colorado last summer. Three are so small they are nearly invisible after the repairs. The fourth is larger, about the size of a quarter, but after two years since repair it has not cracked further.
Insurance depends on your policy specifics. Mine covers total repair cost. If it needs replacement the deductible is my share.

With a 12" crack you probably need a replacement. If you have the embedded heater wires you might need to get a replacement from Mercedes. Let us know what you do and what it costs. Many of us, like me, are contemplating replacing the windshield in the future.
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Old 03-07-2016, 06:05 PM   #7
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In some places, a cracked windshield is an excuse for the law to write a ticket
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Old 03-07-2016, 08:14 PM   #8
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In some places, a cracked windshield is an excuse for the law to write a ticket
If the crack is in the area swept by the wipers AND over a certain length, it's grounds for failing a vehicle inspection in Louisiana.
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Old 03-10-2016, 06:16 PM   #9
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Windshield Replacement

The windshield on our 2013 has two "heat" leads at the top. Their connection is hidden by the overhead area. We're scheduled for a replacement next week. AmFam is covering it - $0 deductible. Be glad that Sprinters have windshields with enough angle to deflect the objects up and over.
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Old 03-10-2016, 07:26 PM   #10
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Thanks for all your comments. Headed back north on Saturday so I'll soon find out how good my insurance policy is. I will give a full report on how things go. Good luck to iaqstuff on your windshield replacement as well.
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Old 03-10-2016, 09:44 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Protagonist View Post
Not true on units made before 2013. No windshield heating elements on the older vans.

Not true in my case. I have an early 2012 EXT with the windshield heating elements. Just goes to show that there really are a lot of variances in the AS product line; even within the same model and model year.



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Old 03-10-2016, 11:11 PM   #12
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Not true in my case. I have an early 2012 EXT with the windshield heating elements. Just goes to show that there really are a lot of variances in the AS product line; even within the same model and model year.
The 2012 EXT is really a 2012.5. The first production run of 2012s were non-EXT and didn't have the windshield heating elements.

This is the first I've heard that the 2012 EXT has them. I'll file that info away for future reference— assuming senility or Alzheimer's doesn't rearrange my filing system without telling me…
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Old 03-22-2016, 08:34 PM   #13
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Originally Posted by Boxster1971 View Post
My view - if you drive you will get windshield damage. I now have four chips in mine now after 65,000 miles. The first two were in Alaska on paved roads. Darn gravel trucks get you. Also had same thing happen in Colorado last summer. Three are so small they are nearly invisible after the repairs. The fourth is larger, about the size of a quarter, but after two years since repair it has not cracked further.
Insurance depends on your policy specifics. Mine covers total repair cost. If it needs replacement the deductible is my share.

With a 12" crack you probably need a replacement. If you have the embedded heater wires you might need to get a replacement from Mercedes. Let us know what you do and what it costs. Many of us, like me, are contemplating replacing the windshield in the future.
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Following up as promised. The local windshield installer couldn't get OEM replacement (Sekurit) in my rural area so ended up with No Name glass made in China. For some reason the plain glass I got was more expensive than the heat defroster version. Quote was $825 with $250 deductible. The shop has a lifetime guarantee against leaks. Getting it installed this week.
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Old 03-23-2016, 08:37 AM   #14
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Thanks for the update - good info. I carry a $1000 deductible to keep my annual insurance cost low. Guess I'll have to pay for the windshield if I get it replaced. With four chips repaired already in 60,000 miles it's just a matter of time when I'll have to get the windshield replaced.


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Old 04-11-2016, 08:45 PM   #15
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Windshield Replacement --- FINALLY

Our insurance company's preferred vendor is Safelite. I contacted the vendor and they said they would send two guys to replace it the next Thursday. After 10 days, I call them and they said they needed a picture of the manufacturer information in the lower driver side of the windshield before ordering it. So I drove the 10 mile round trip to the storage area, took and sent the picture. Then about a week later they called saying their techs would be at our residence on the following Thursday between 8 and 5. I retrieved the AI from storage again and about 4:30 PM a lone tech showed, looked at the windshield and said yup, they had ordered the right one... and he drove off. I took the AI back to storage. They called and scheduled the replacement for another Thursday - two weeks later. I retrieved the AI from storage again. Same tech showed at about 4:30 PM. No promised call prior to arriving. And he was by himself again. He got the windshield out of his van and showed me the two leads coming off the top of the windshield and said that he'd have to drop the "headliner" during his installation. It quickly became apparent that he had never done a Sprinter in his 23 years of experience. I looked at my watch and said "You need to leave." Astounded, he put the windshield back in his van and drove away. I was done with Safelite and their incompetence.
I called AmFam and they immediately had Reliable Glass (Phx area) call me. They asked if I could bring it into their shop and I said sure. A few days later they installed the windshield in about an hour and a half. They simply dropped the dome light module to hook up the heating leads. I watched the whole operation and left their shop happy. I will admit the heating element in the new windshield is shiny and more visible, but I haven't energized it yet
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Old 04-11-2016, 09:36 PM   #16
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Thanks for the update and glad you got it done right after the bad experience with Safelite.
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