Is it Illegal to Drive with a Cracked Windshield in Ontario?
As any driver can attest, a cracked or chipped windshield is a common occurrence. Whether it’s a result of a flying rock or some other debris, cracks and chips are not insignificant. More than just a cosmetic problem, driving with a cracked windshield in Ontario can be risky and dangerous.
In fact, a chipped or cracked windshield can potentially compromise the structural integrity of a vehicle. The windshield is actually designed to transfer the force of a front-end collision to the chassis of the vehicle. As well, the windshield keeps the vehicle’s air bag system in proper place.
With a cracked windshield in Ontario, there may be a fine
A neglected windshield crack or chip can minimize the safety effectiveness of a windshield, and make for a dangerous situation in the event of a collision. More than that, a crack or chip will impair driver vision once the damage spreads.
In Ontario, various windshield infractions can lead to fines, even during a routine police stop. At minimum, a ticket could be issued, and if the damage shows as extensive, the vehicle could be ordered off the road (driver visibility impaired).
- Window obstruction fine $85.00
- Windshield obstruction fine $85.00
- Object obstructing view fine $85.00
- Window coated/view obstructed $85.00
- Windshield coated/view obstructed $85.00
Other fines for a cracked windshield in Ontario
Windshield visibility is about safety - drivers must be able to see in all directions, including other vehicles driving both ways. Highway traffic regulations govern driver visibility, and vary from province to province. In fact, a cracked windshield in Ontario may be ticketed differently than other provinces. Hence, drivers need to be aware when operating a vehicle out of province.
- No clear view to vehicle front $85.00
- No clear view to vehicle sides $85.00
- No clear view to vehicle rear $85.00
Driver visibility also includes windshield wipers
Beyond windshield damage, improper windshield wipers also create visibility problems, and especially so during the winter months. This is particularly relevant for commercial vehicles.
- Improper windshield wipers $ 85.00
- Improper windshield wiper - commercial $200.00
- No windshield wiper/wipers $ 85.00
- No windshield wiper(s) – commercial vehicle $200.00
Small crack or not, a windshield should be fixed
For the driver with a cracked windshield in Ontario, it’s better not to consider it an unsightly blemish. Without doubt, a crack or chip will only get worse the longer its left. Ideally, windshield damage should be repaired ASAP. It’s mainly about safety - cracks can impair driver vision and that can be dangerous. If the chip or crack is just developing, then repairs can often be completed in a very short time, and at little cost.
What’s most important, regardless of the damage, is to have the work done professionally – by a shop that specializes in windshield repair. This is not the right time for a do-it-yourself project just to save a few dollars. A professional job will be guaranteed, and a manufacturer’s warranty will be provided. The bottom line with windshield repair, like any automobile repair, is to get it done properly the first time around.