Windshield replacement

Windshield replacement

Have a small chip that can be repaired hopefully. Has anyone replaced a windshield on the S ? Should I use Tesla servide center or national company / safelight etc ?
Anybody have a cost estimate ? What about special process for rear view mirror / cameras ?

UnshodBob | April 8, 2017

I saw a Car and Driver article that said they replaced a windshield in their test Tesla and it cost about US $1000 for the glass plus installation. The camera does complicate the repair, I believe. I think they have to calibrate the camera afterwards. I would only have a replacement done by Tesla or a Tesla approved body shop, if that's what Tesla recommends.

rsattin1 | April 8, 2017

Just had to get my windshield replaced due to a large tire rod hitting my front windshield while riding on the interstate--happened so fast that could only see what it was when I reviewed my dash cam on a frame by frame basis. Lucky that the rod didn't penetrate the cabin. Anyway, I called my insurance company (USAA) and they had a glass replace service with Safelight. Safelight was awful, arranging a time at my house, then changing the venue at the last minute to a place an hour from my home, then not being able to find the glass. I had called Tesla to see if they had a windshield replacement and they didn't when I originally contacted USAA; they were going to try to find one. But, after all the difficulty with Safelight, I contacted Tesla several days later and they had the replacement. Total including tax was $971. That included replacing the rain sensor and calibrating all the cameras. Plus, they provided a loaner car since it took 6 hours for them to complete. If you have a dash cam, Tesla will not replace that back on your windshield. When I put it back up, the dash cam wouldn't start--there was a blown fuse so took it back to my installer who got it back up and running without any additional cost. In short, have the repairs done by Tesla. You'll need to go back to them anyway since Safelight doesn't re-calibrate the cameras.

GHammer | April 8, 2017

I think it depends on the service center. I had my AP1 windshield replaced last year and the service center gave me the number of a local mobile repair service that came to the service center where they had the glass while my car was in for annual service. They indicated that nothing needed to be done to the camera.

Silver2K | April 8, 2017

is there a glass option when repairing the tesla windshield?

my bmw had the $800 bmw logo windshield or a $200 genric.

curious because the tesla windshield content blocks radar detectors and regular do not.

tstolz | April 8, 2017

$1,000 - Tesla arranged everything with a local Tesla certified glass shop.

Haggy | April 8, 2017

Tesla can and should replace it since recalibrating the camera is a safety issue. Insurance should cover it. State Farm gave me a run around, because I'm supposed to use one of their glass installers. If I don't, they have a group that's supposed to get reasonable estimates from their approved vendors and pay me based on what they could have paid. But once I got past the first level of support and actually speak to that group, they immediately say to just take it to Tesla. They know from experience that nobody else can handle it and there's no aftermarket glass, so the lowest bid would be from Tesla anyway.

Window glass is normally covered by comprehensive, not collision. In some states, the deductible gets waived by law. It should not raise your rates, but I'd check your state laws for particulars. In my state, I have to pay whatever my deductible is for comprehensive, but they won't even bother asking how the glass broke.

Silver2K | April 8, 2017

I'm covered with 0 deductible, just curious to see if I can get around that stuff in their windshield.

DLebryk | April 9, 2017

The glass situation changed recently. Oct of last year I had the windshield replaced. There was no aftermarket glass available - period, nobody made it then. State Farm, no questions asked, super simple, just go to Tesla and have it fixed.

Just had a the windshield replaced this month - totally different story, two companies now make Tesla windshields. For State Farm you have to start the process with that glass, because it is half the price (or at least what my agent told me).

I managed to have Tesla replace the windshield this last time - the price was identical both times, $1,145 including tax and labor. The next time, I'll have to use aftermarket glass, or pay the difference myself under comprehensive (no deductible) if I want to have Tesla do the repair.

I have an early 2014 S85 - no autopilot bits.

Silver2K | April 10, 2017


do you have any idea who makes the other windshield?

reed_lewis | April 10, 2017

I had to get a new windshield. A rock hit the bottom part and it was spreading. I used a local company in Mass named JN Phillips glass company. Tesla recommended them, and they did a great job (once they got the correct HW2 windshield from tesla).

They did it at their facility instead of my house because of it being a Tesla. But the guy who did it had done about 20 Model S before, so he knew what he was doing.

reed_lewis | April 10, 2017

...and in Massachusetts, we have Zero dollar deductible for glass on the car. It is well worth it.

jordanrichard | April 10, 2017

Knocking on wood, I have not had to replace my windshield, but like MA, here in CT, glass is covered 100%, no deductible. There is really is only small handful of companies that actually make automotive glass. JN Phillips, which I have used before, is just a glass installer, like 99.9% of these glass companies. They do not make the windshields. Anyone here with a German car will see Sekur or Pinkington on their glass, along with the associated company be it Mercedes, BMW, etc. On Fords it is Autolite.

Haggy | April 10, 2017

With Tesla, it's a matter of which windshield, and there have been at least five versions. Chances are slim that anybody would ever make the first or third version. Then again, if you have one of those, Tesla would replace it with something newer, but you could always argue that the aftermarket glass doesn't match if you have one of those and another company tries to sell you a replacement.

It seems that we now know that there's an aftermarket replacement for v2 windshields and that should work for all pre-autopilot cars. It would make sense that they'd also want to make v4 windshields for AP1 cars, since there are more of them than pre-AP cars. It should take Tesla under a year to make more HW2 cars than there are pre-AP cars, so there's a clear market there too. Unless there's something that drives up the cost of one version, making it not cost effective to start making them, then all this makes sense.

Aside from the area for the camera mount/ rear view mirror, are there other physical differences? If not, it should be easier for a glass company to replicate all of them.

reed_lewis | April 10, 2017

When I got mine replaced it was a genuine Tesla windshield. The local Tesla Service Center does not do windshield replacements on Model S. They do happen to do the Model S replacements though because it is too big for a standard glass shop to handle.

reed_lewis | April 10, 2017

One other difference is that if you have the cold weather package, there are coils below the visible area which is where the heated windshield is. My Subaru also has this, and it keeps the wipers from becoming frozen to the windshield.

Helpful in cold New England.

jordanrichard | April 10, 2017

I didn't order the cold weather package and have never had an issue with the wipers sticking to the glass. However that is because if it's going to sleet or snow, I park the wipers in the service mode. When I pre-heat the car, any ice on the glass melts.

As for the various versions of the glass. Even us pre-AP owners have windshields that have a special coating on the glass. If you look at the windshield at a certain angel, it appears have a cooper/reddish look to it. This is said to be a UV/heat barrier. So it isn't merely a big piece of glass and have to wonder if these aftermarket windshields have it.

victusw | April 12, 2017

Just had my 2015 MS HW1 AP Cold Weather package windshield replaced. Car is insured by Safeco with Full Glass coverage i.e. $0 deductible. Even though Safeco prefers customers to go through Safelite, I opted to go with Tesla SC in Washington which uses All Stars Auto Glass to perform replacement work at the SC. Safeco did not raise any issue with my venue choice. Tesla OEM glass was used and no camera recalibration needed per Tesla Bellevue SC. Car was in the SC overnight to allow windshield to settle and cure. Tesla MS 85 was provided as loaner. Work was done according to spec with one exception, windshield is creating occasional crackling sound along the edge when driving over unsmooth road. Have already informed Tesla Bellevue SC of the issue. May need to bring it in for another checkup and troubleshooting.

reed_lewis | April 12, 2017

Here in the awful weather of Massachusetts, the cold weather package does help. It not only adds the windshield heater, but puts heaters on the windshield washer nozzles to prevent freezing.

Our Subarus have also had the windshield heaters, and it does help.

When it is zero degrees outside, even if the car is warm, the bottom of the windshield is not warmed by the car.

cadman10000 | April 12, 2017

I had my windshield replaced at a service center. I have an AP1 car and the total was ~$1250 which State Farm paid no questions asked.

cookpwr | April 12, 2017

Tesla's $1000-$1200 to replace windshield wins here. Just took my wife's BMW i3 in to replace the windshield and the estimate was $2200 from the BMW Service Center. Glass alone is apparently $1000. Something about BMW's carbon fiber frame and then the rain sensor, tech package elements of the rear view mirror housing.

MORAL OF STORY?: Call your insurance companies and make sure you have windshield breakage coverage which typically has a deductible of $100.

reed_lewis | April 12, 2017

Or in Massachusetts (and a few other states) make sure you have no deductible glass coverage. Well worth the few bucks a year.

DLebryk | April 12, 2017


So sorry I don't know who makes the aftermarket windshields. I didn't recognize the names. The person that told me this does all the claims payment for a fairly large State Farm office. I want to say the name started with a C, but that could be wrong.

And of course before I ever used an aftermarket windshield, I would make sure they know the exact model I have, which includes the cold weather package. So, yes the heating coils would have to be there.