Illinois Windshield Replacement Law

Illinois windshield replacement laws don’t require auto insurance companies to waive your deductibles.
Written by Tiffany Leung
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Illinois windshield replacement law does not require insurance providers to waive your deductibles. All comprehensive car insurance in
Illinois
includes partial glass damage—but full glass coverage costs extra. 
  • State laws in Illinois mandate that insurance providers are only partially responsible for covering the costs of a damaged windshield—and that’s only if you have comprehensive coverage.
  • Many insurance providers in Illinois offer add-on windshield coverage for an additional price.
  • Considering the windshield replacement laws before choosing your insurance policy can help you save more in the long run—especially if you do end up with a cracked window.

Illinois car insurance won’t cover the full cost of windshield replacement

In short: Illinois insurance law dictates that providers are only partially responsible for covering auto glass claims—even if you have full
comprehensive coverage
The only states that waive insurance deductibles for windshield replacement: Florida, Kentucky, and South Carolina. 
How it works in Illinois: Insurance providers are not required to fully cover the cost of a windshield replacement or waive deductibles unless you have zero-deductible coverage. However, all comprehensive insurance offered in Illinois will cover a percentage of windshield glass repairs and/or replacements.
What about OEM glass? Illinois insurance companies are also not required to purchase new or original equipment manufacturer (OEM) vehicle glass for your repair, as long as it is the same quality and type as the original. If you’d prefer to have your windshield repaired with OEM glass, you’ll likely be responsible for paying the difference between the aftermarket glass price and the cost of OEM glass—unless you have
OEM coverage
.
If the glass is damaged in a car accident: Full comprehensive insurance will cover some of the costs to repair a damaged windshield, but there’s a caveat: that damage cannot be related to a car accident. Harm inflicted upon your windshield as the result of a motor vehicle accident will not be covered at all unless you also have
collision insurance
.
What if I don’t have full coverage? Without comprehensive or collision coverage, your windshield replacement cost will not be paid for at all, regardless of how it got damaged. However, when you’re involved in a collision, an insurance claim can be filed with the other driver’s insurance provider if there is proof that the other driver was at fault.
MORE: Does insurance cover cracked windshields?

Drivers are responsible for the cost of windshield repairs

In Illinois, the cost of a windshield replacement falls on you (the driver) if your windshield is damaged, since there is no requirement for insurance providers to cover windshield replacements.
However, if your auto insurance policy includes comprehensive coverage, you can submit a claim for any windshield damage unrelated to a collision. The amount that your car insurance covers and the cost of your deductible will depend on the specific terms of your policy.
Windshield damage due to a collision will only be covered if your policy includes collision insurance—and, in the case of collision damage, you’ll only be responsible for the deductible. 
Drivers carrying minimum
liability coverage
will have to foot the full cost of a windshield replacement. On average, the total cost to replace a windshield in Illinois ranges from around $250 to $400, but the exact price ultimately depends on the size, make, and model of your vehicle.
For minor windshield cracks, chips, or broken wipers, the cost of repairs can range anywhere between $50 to $200. If your collision or comprehensive deductible is higher than the cost of repairs, it’s smarter to pay for the fix out of pocket
instead of making a claim
—since claims can also increase your insurance rates, costing you more money down the line. 

Illinois law does not require auto insurance for windshield repairs

Illinois law does not require auto insurance coverage in order to pay for windshield repairs. But full comprehensive insurance will include partial windshield repair or replacement, and many insurance providers offer additional coverage for full glass replacement without deductibles.
Illinois car insurance laws
require drivers to carry minimum coverage of the following two types of liability insurance:
You may be able to file a claim with another driver’s insurance company to pay for windshield damages if they were at fault—but your best bet is to invest in additional coverage.

When to replace your cracked windshield in Illinois

There are no specific laws that prohibit driving with a cracked windshield in Illinois. However, according to the Illinois Compiled Statutes,
Sec. 12-503
, “no person shall drive a motor vehicle when the windshield, side or rear windows are in such defective condition or repair as to materially impair the driver’s view to the front, side or rear”.
In other words: You cannot drive with a cracked windshield in Illinois if it impairs your visibility on the road. If you do, you’ll likely be issued a citation if a police officer deems the obstruction to be too extensive.
In any case, it’s always best to have any windshield damage repaired as soon as possible. Getting a small chip or crack fixed before it becomes bigger will also help reduce repair costs—or avoid a full windshield replacement.
If you’re unsure about whether or not your windshield is in need of repairs, you can always visit a repair shop for advice from a professional. If your vehicle is still under warranty, windshield repairs may also be covered by the manufacturer instead. 
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