The windshield on my Toyota Sienna XLE minivan had a 2 foot crack in it which is way bigger than the size you can repair. So I called my insurance company representative at Allstate to find out if an insurance claim for glass replacement will raise my rates. Lucky for me, in Michigan it will not so I guess that varies by state. Allstate has a company they work with but I work with someone whose cousin works a glass company. I verified with the representative that I could use anyone I wanted and called the guy who works for Vision Auto Glass.
The advantage of finding your own person/company is that they have the ability to waive the deductible which in my case for glass replacement is $100. Apparently the front windshield for a 2011 Sienna is $800 some dollars so they were able to waive it. I was passed off to the admin person who quickly got Allstate on the line on a 3 way call so within 15 minutes I was able to give Allstate all the info they needed, got Allstate’s approval and arranged for Vision Auto Glass to come to my workplace and replace the glass while I worked. They had same day options if I took the van to their shop but that seemed like a waste of time.
On Thursday (2 days later), they called to verify they were on their way. I let them know my keys would be with my receptionist if they needed them (I left the car unlocked) and went on with work. Checked with the receptionist a couple hours later when I got a second and she confirmed that they came, borrowed the keys for a minute, and she signed for me for the receipt which required no payment.
The windshield looked great. They put the 4 or 5 stickers back on (oil change, state parks, county parks, EZ pass, etc) in the exact same locations and the invoice had some basic instructions about not washing the car for a period of time. This was easier than I thought it was going to be and cost me nothing:
Pros: Only took 15 minutes with the insurance company and glass company and I did not have to take my car anywhere. Deductible was waived (apparently this can only be done if the windshield is expensive as it obviously doesn’t make sense for them to waive it if the glass is only $150)
Overall: Better than expected experience, almost perfect. Would use them again in heartbeat.