Questions Asked and FYI and More!

Questions Asked and FYI and More!

When looking at used car convertilbles ...

by Sueann Blackwell-Merrillville Auto Glass & Trim on 08/21/23

So, right next door to us is a car lot. Discount Auto LLC owned by Walter Woldt. There is a 2003 Volkswagen Beetle Convertible for sale for $3,500, and as I sit at my desk I see quite a few people looking at the car. ( mostly women with a Male counterpart with them) I see them test drive, walk around the car - look over the interior - kick the tires, look in the trunk - even look at the spacing on body panels...... NOT ONE PERSON - checked the TOP- worked the top ? put their hands on the top - checked out the rear window- and from where I sit it is getting close to its life's end. The cost of a new replacement top on a 2003 - 20011 is est $2,635 if it does not need a new headliner or inner insulation.
I don't know how many times I have heard - we just bought this car and it needs a top - and not knowing that replacements are $1,000 of dollars - sometimes more than you paid for the car. Please feel free to give me a call - if you are thinking about buying a used convertible - at least I can give you an idea of what you will have to spend to get it where it was when it was new. PS if you scroll down on our Facebook Page you will see a recent one we just did.

Will my Windshield Repair be invisible?

by Sueann Blackwell-Merrillville Auto Glass & Trim on 03/09/23

The quick answer is NO.

Windshield repairs are not cosmetic- the cracks fill in and will be less noticeable but when the light hits it right you will see the crack still- that is why it is not recommended to do repairs in sight lines.. 
That being said- some fill better than others - stars lines you will notice the most ..

If you have a crack or chip in your windshield, you will want to get it repaired quickly. This can preserve the integrity of the windshield and prevent further damage. However, upon seeing the repair, you may be a bit concerned. Most of the time, you can still see the crack, chip or star where the windshield was damaged. This may leave you wondering why you needed a repair when the damage is still visible. Here are a few frequently asked questions you may have about this topic.

Why Can You Still See a Crack or Chip After it Was Repaired?

When a windshield repair is done, a small amount of clear resin is injected into the chip, crack or star. This simply fills up the crack or chip with a material that helps prevent it from cracking further. It does not disguise or hide the damage. There is no product that will do that. This is the reason why you need to replace your windshield if the damage is in your line of vision while driving.

Why Should You Repair the Windshield if the Damage is Still Visible?

Repairing a crack or chip helps to prevent that crack or chip from growing in size. It does not hide the flaw in your glass. If you decided not to repair a crack, the crack would grow as glass expands and contracts in hot and cold temperatures or as your car vibrates when it hits potholes or you play your music loudly. This is why it is important to fill in these items, even if the damage is visible.

Is There Any Way to Hide a Crack?

At this time, the only way to hide imperfections in your auto glass is to replace the glass, rather than to repair it. However, it is important to note that some repairs help hide the flaw better than others. For example, a filled in chip will be less visible than a repaired star. Always keep this factor in mind when deciding whether to repair or replace the windshield. If you don't want to see any flaws, windshield replacement is the better option for you.

When you have a chip or crack in your windshield, it is important that it get repaired quickly. This helps to ensure that the crack or chip won't spread. If it does, your windshield may need to be completely replaced, rather than just repaired.

1971-1976 Scissor Top Convertibles

by Sueann Blackwell-Merrillville Auto Glass & Trim on 02/05/23

While we do not do these kinds of tops - I will be linking to places that do:
Mr. Trim in Downers Grove Il
Midwest Auto Tops and Trim - Orland Park (CLOSED)  as of June 1st 2023

 it is important to know about these tops -  These include:  full-size GM convertibles, including the 1971-1976 Buick LeSabre, the 1971-1976 Buick Centurion, the 1971-1976 Cadillac Eldorado, the 1971-1976 Chevrolet Impala and Caprice, the 1971-1976 Oldsmobile Delta 88, 98, and Royale, and the 1971-76 Pontiac Catalina and Granville

This style of folding top frame soon became better known as the scissor top because of the unique way it folds and stacks behind the rear seat of the car.

They are the most difficult tops to do  and usually require a full restoration of the scissor top frame. 

Its a tedious process, but you can not skip any steps or the top will not work correctly

New windshield installed with retention tape now what?

by Sueann Blackwell-Merrillville Auto Glass & Trim on 12/15/22

Just Got a New Windshield? Aftercare Tips to Make Your Investment Last

Merrillville Auto Glass and Trim Just Got a New Windshield? Aftercare Tips to Make Your Investment Last When you get a windshield replacement, the way you treat the glass immediately after installation plays a major role in the longevity of the window.   During the first 48 hours after you leave the auto glass repair shop, your new windshield is most vulnerable to damage. To ensure the glass settles and bonds properly to the frame of your vehicle, there are a handful of things you must do.   Read on to learn the windshield replacement aftercare tips every vehicle owner should know. 

 Let Your Vehicle Sit for over night. Immediately after the technicians complete your windshield replacement, your vehicle should sit for at least two to three hours to allow the glass adhesive to begin setting and drying. Avoid driving the vehicle during this time to prevent road vibrations, weather, debris, and other factors from compromising the adhesive’s ability to settle.

   Drive With Caution 48  hours after the replacement is complete,

the seal around your windshield is still in the process of curing completely. And to allow that seal to adhere to the frame of the vehicle properly, you must be careful about how you drive during the day or two after you get your ride back.   If you tend to drive on particularly bumpy roads, see if you can find alternate routes for a couple of days. When you encounter speed bumps or unavoidable potholes, slow to a crawl before driving over them. Hitting bumps and holes with significant force or driving on roads that cause considerable vibration can interfere with the sealant’s ability to cure. In the event that happens, leaks or glass detachment can result.

  Don’t Slam the Doors! For at least 48 hours after your windshield

replacement,leave a window cracked and do your very best to avoid slamming the doors, trunk, or hood of your vehicle! The molding and adhesive that keep the windshield in place are still in the process of setting and curing throughout the first couple of days after the glass installation. Any degree of force can interfere with the adhesive’s ability to cure, and if it doesn’t cure properly, your windshield can leak or detach. Since your windshield helps maintain the structural integrity of your vehicle during a collision, an improperly attached windshield can put your safety at serious risk.    Leave a Window Cracked If it’s hot outdoors when you get your windshield replaced, air pressure can build inside the cabin of your vehicle when you leave it parked outside. When you park inside a garage, pressure can still build if the interior of your garage gets hot enough.   After just a single hour of sitting in a hot area, the temperature inside a vehicle increases approximately 43-48 degrees higher than the temperature outside it. If it’s 90° F outdoors, the cabin of your parked vehicle can reach a staggering 138° F within just 90 minutes. Yikes

  Let the Retention Tape Sit When you get your vehicle back,
you’ll notice retention tape around the edges of the windshield. Although that tape may not be your favorite thing to look at, do not remove it! leave it on for 48 hours.   Retention tape is designed to prevent debris from entering the area around the windshield seal. If you take it off, you dramatically increase the risk of debris interfering with the seal’s curing process. Ultimately, even a small amount of debris can compromise the integrity of the windshield’s seal and put your safety at risk.   Minimize Potential Stressors Extreme temperatures (both hot and cold), as well as direct sunlight, heavy winds, rain, and pressure, can all interfere with the adhesive’s setting process.   To give your new windshield the best chance of sealing properly, it’s best to avoid the following potential stressors for at least 24-48 hours after your windshield replacement.   Parking in direct sunlight. If you can find a shady spot, park there. If you must park out in the open on a sunny day, use a sun shield at the very least. Driving in heavy rain. If the weather is particularly bad for the first couple of days after your windshield replacement, avoid driving if at all possible. Heavy precipitation can potentially interfere with the adhesive’s sealing process. Resting items against the glass. Keep the dash of your vehicle free and clear for at least a day after the installation and avoid using exterior covers. You don’t want anything resting against the window while the seal cures

No Car Wash for 48 hours

. Power washers and car washes. High-pressure streams of water can damage the molding around your new windshield when it’s not fully cured. Wait at least two days after installation to power wash your car or take it through a car wash. If you must wash your vehicle, use a regular garden hose instead.   Check out some of our other windshield maintenance tips for simple things you can do to keep your new windshield in excellent condition over the long term! 

 Get a Free Windshield Replacement Estimate from Merrillville Auto Glass and Trim Need a new windshield?

 Let our team at Merrillville Auto Glass help you out!   To get started, request a free estimate or give us a call at: 219-769-1905

As the Weather Turns- Remember Spring is next!

by Sueann Blackwell-Merrillville Auto Glass & Trim on 11/17/22

Now that the season is over - its a great time to bring in your boat upholstery over for us to recover it during the Winter.  While the snow is covering the ground and the hustle and bustle of the seasonal holidays are among us - we can be working on your gift.  bring in your boat interior now and when Spring rolls around you will be able to enjoy you new upholstery with no down time.  

Its Fall Time!

by Sueann Blackwell-Merrillville Auto Glass & Trim on 09/13/20

Now that we still have great weather- Use this time to get your vehicle ready. 

1.)   A good cleaning inside and out - We do carry cleaning products and protectors .  A good wax  added to protect your cars finish. 
2.)  New wiper blades and a windshield protectant such as Aquapel applied to you windshield to help you see better.
3.)  Check your tires 
4.)  Emergency kit in your vehicle? Blanket 
5.)  Floor mats
6.) Seat Covers
7.) Oil Change
8.)  Clean your headlights  - if they are plastic Meguiars Blue does a really good job. 

A little reminissing.......Tri-City Plaza aka Commons

by Sueann Blackwell-Merrillville Auto Glass & Trim on 08/12/18

80/94 going east was backed up, so I detoured and got off at Cline Av.  so as to take 5th Av South... I thought about this road- and how long it has been since I drove it everyday. When I first opened in 1989 our shop was in Tri-City Plaza at 5th and Clark Road.  It was being renovated at the time -  In 1993 we left Tri-City Plaza to move the store to Merrillville. I stopped and looked at Tri-City Plaza and was sadden.  How I knew they spent hundred's of thousands of dollars renovating the place - it looked worse than when they started.  When my store was their we had quite a few waiters,  and they would walk Tri-City Plaza - their was a Restaurants  and other places to eat, a Library, Walgreens, and the wig shop..a grocery store and more.  Red's Car  Wash was right next door along with Guaranteed Printing along with a couple of clothing stores.   Now- just a few stores are there, but so run down. All that money wasted.. If the Owner would have taken better care of his tenants-and fixed building issures,  the place would have been better- there was so much more work that needed to be done.....

7 Rules for Staying Safe this Holiday Season

by Sueann Blackwell-Merrillville Auto Glass & Trim on 12/13/17

With the hustle and bustle of the Holidays , leaves us rushing between holiday parties, picking up gifts  or traveling to see family.  Many people revert to bad driving habits during all this hustle and bustle. 
  1. Cheers!  - to NOT Drinking and Driving  - I know it sounds obvious but it bears repeating.  Whether it's at the company Christmas part, New Year's Eve or just catching up with friends and family for a festive drink.  Drinking and driving is just not worth it.. Designate a driver or enjoy a mock tail instead.  Or sleep on the couch. 
  2. We Love Safety - Do a pre-hoilday vehicle check up - can reduce your risk of having problems on the road.  Tire Pressure, Oil change, a wash , wiper blades changed- fill the washer tank and  Aquapel on your windshield. Jumper cables, blanket - snacks. 
  3. Please Buckle Up  - The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, seat belts saved an estimated 13,941 lives among passenger vehicle occupants age 5 and older in 2015. You want to be part of that club.  So do the people who love you .
  4. SLOW THE HELL DOWN!  Speed is the #1 cause of car accidents (plus sudden acceleration is a major gas guzzler) and I know the rushing around makes you fell like you can make up some time on the road, but I'm sure your friends and family would rather have you arrive SAFELY even if you are late. 
  5. Right turn  only AFTER YOU STOP and yield the right of way.  Lots of accidents could be avoided with this one..
  6. And of Course DO NOT TEX AND DRIVE!  Yes, its still happening - the swerving on the road.  Look around and you will see how many people are still doing this!
  7. And last but not least .... Pay Attention,    No putting on make up - reading (yes, I have seen people on 80/94 with a book on the steering wheel open reading and driving) Really pay attention to everything around you, you will probably see what I am writing about.  

We wish you and your love ones a safe , healthy  Holiday Season! 

CLK 320 convertible & 1970 Lincoln

by Sueann Blackwell-Merrillville Auto Glass & Trim on 01/11/17

Sometimes, when restoring a vehicle you just can not find the parts you need. Or if you do find them wow on the price.  Two examples are :

1.) 2003 Mercedes CLK320 Convertible. It was missing the pass side convertible top guide  pin.  Mercedes only sells this pin as part of the whole mechanism that closed the sunroof costing over $1,000.  We purchased a 2004 Sebring convertible top guide pin - fits perfect and does the job for $30 part # 4864764. 

2.) 1970 Lincoln . needed the qrt window side weather strips. that fit between the door glass and qrt window.   Well, no one make this for this vehicle - but the Ford Mustang will fit and do the job. 

I hope this helps anyone who is looking for a solutions for these problems

Well, It is August... Are your items ready?

by Sueann Blackwell-Merrillville Auto Glass & Trim on 08/02/16

This was pretty good on keeping items in good condition to make them last longer ;

When the weather get frosty- here are a few thing to think about...

by Sueann Blackwell-Merrillville Auto Glass & Trim on 01/11/16

When the weather gets into the teens,
 you need to be aware of some things.

  1. Warm up your car for at least 3 minutes
  2. Wipe down the door frame. Clean the entire door frame to remove road debris and other detritus that can build up over time. Water can collect around the dirt and freeze the door shut once the temperatures drop.
  3. Push gently on your doors to loose the ice has a hold of your door's weather strips.  you could break your door handle if everything is frozen together
  4. Keep a de-icer product in your garage or winter jacket, in case you are frozen out of your car. These are typically sprayed directly onto the lock, and are the most effective option in severe ice conditions. Choose the lock with the least amount of ice buildup, spray, and insert the key.
  5. If your windshield washer is frozen - try adding rubbing alcohol to the mix. It will keep it from freezing and help melt ice on your windshield .
  6. DO NOT ROLL YOUR WINDOW DOWN! Window regulators are fragile at times in cold weather.  Cables and plastics get brittle and can easy break or bend when forced.

Keep your investments from unwanted visitors!

by Sueann Blackwell-Merrillville Auto Glass & Trim on 01/05/16

Mice and Racoon s and Insect can play havoc on your Boats and Cars that are being stored.

Instead of moth balls
  (which are not good for you ) You can effectively repel moths and other insects by placing several drops of Lavender, lemongrass, cedar wood or rosemary on cotton balls or rags and hag it from your Garage, Boat or stored cars. nee socks make good containers for cotton balls or rags - you can hand inside you vehicle, garage or boat to ward off unwanted visitors- Eucalyptus also repels fleas.

Peppermint Spray for Mice and Racoon s.   Mice hate peppermint.  Add 2 teaspoons of peppermint essential oil to 1 cup of water and spray in areas where you think mice might frequent.  Make peppermint sachet with cotton balls, place them inside Boats, cars and garage. You can place cotton balls inside old medicine bottle that you have poked holes in and hand under the hood of you car to repel mice from eating the insulation around electrical wires - or hang on coat hooks by your headliner - they love taking your seat foam and making a nest in headliners. Or use the above nylon sock to hang also . You can also grow peppermint  and sprinkle peppermint leaves around you garage to keep them out too.  just cut sprigs and hank upside down to dry.  then you can crush them and sprinkle them in your garage or even around your boat. Raccoon do not like mints (peppermint) but the may put up with it when there is food - like a garbage can- but still can work.  Depends how bull headed  they are.

You can purchase essentials oils on line or at your local Health Food Store

All Glass companies are the same so the only difference is price ? Right? NO

by Sueann Blackwell-Merrillville Auto Glass & Trim on 11/08/15

When calling for glass prices is price the really only thing you are thinking about?  Here are a few thing we want you to think about BEFORE having your auto glass replaced.

  • Which end is the quality of the glass you are putting into my vehicle?  Is it a China Aftermarket glass or from a quality supplier like Pinkerton and PGW?
  • Is it used?  You may have to ask if it is a super low price. We do not recommend used when replacing your windshield. Contamination of urethane's is always a concern for quality seal the will keep your windshield in place if your airbags blow..
  • What kind of urethane are they using - the cheep stuff that dries in a week?  or in cold weather are they using  one that has a drive away  time in ONE Hour at  very low temperatures?
  • This one is my favorite: Are they replacing your moldings with a cheep aftermarket molding that is sold by the box - or are they using one make for you make and model by Precision  moldings or Gold group?
  • Another favorite:  Some glass companies "cheat" your windshield in , by that I mean  they pry on your cowl (bottom molding ) that should be removed and do not even place urethane on the bottom. (I have personally witness this in a few shops) This saves the glass shop employees time so the can do more glass volume, or if they are on the road they have so many the slop them in and onto the next job..  Really, do you want sloppy service or one that the tech took his time to make sure everything is  cleaned and primed before the install?  Problem is you will not notice this because water does not run uphill.  
  • Is the person going to work on your car a newbie?  Or a season pro?

Just a few things to think about....I know, but I have been doing this for over 25 Years,, I have even seen windshields that have been put in with silicone....I have been at local shops that have done the above....  We do glass like we are doing it for one of our children, our Grandmother , and or Mom's .... its not popular... it cost more... but we know we are doing our best job, with the best products.... we are not getting rich ... we are happy , and we can sleep at night...

Well, Its that time of year again,

by Sueann Blackwell-Merrillville Auto Glass & Trim on 09/16/15

Commercial Vehicles:   For pictures go to our facebook page to see before & afters

Seat, Foam and Fram's Repaired.... We fix a lot of vehicles with the sides gone- down to the frame.  We have access to OEM Fabrics and Vinyls.  Foams can be rebuit and we can cure that sinking feeling when you are sitting in your trucks.  All of our work is done inhouse- We have Welders and Great Technitions to bring your work truck back - and your drivers sitting straight again.


Did you know we have access to vinyl flooring to put in your commercial trucks! Its easier to take care of too.

Door Repairs

Windows not working?  Missing mirrors - Handles broken .  We have the experience to repair these before the bad weather gets here.  If it happens duing your busy season,  give us a call we can order everything and have it here so your down time does not cost you money

How to Maximize your MPG

by Sueann Blackwell-Merrillville Auto Glass & Trim on 02/16/15

Hopefully, we can help you get more millage from your vehicle with
these 12 techniques.
1.) Find your cars best "spot" Finding it by not accelerating forcefully or timidly  - it helps by looking at your RPM and feeling the engine

2) Your are not a race car driver- Remember wind resistant reduces fuel economy. The threshold at which highway gas mileage begins to degrade is at about 50 miles per hour. You can increase efficiency by traveling below the speed limit, bit only when its feasible and doing so won't impede traffic or cause other safety issues.

3) Use your air condition strategically. AC draws power which make your engine work harder. On highway it is better to have AC on than window down causing a drag.

4) Drive steadily and smoothly. Try keeping an even keel.  On the highway using your cruse control can help you significantly improve your gas millage. Remeber all because you can go faster does not mean you should.

5) Read the road ahead-  look a conditions in front of you and sides- focus farther down the road will help you anticipate traffic lights and stops. By seeing that the light up head is going to be turning yellow - you can let up off the acceleration and slowly come to a stop- This will help you save and take a load off your brakes.

6) Plan your route - It's amazing how much gas you can save by combining trips and planning the most time efficient driving route before you go.  Also prudent planning will ensure there is sufficient range when  driving electric car.  Taking a route with mostly right turns is generally more economical than a route with a lot of left turns because you won't spend time waiting to turn across oncoming traffic.

7) Limit idling.  When your car is motionless you are getting 0 miles per gallon. Of course you can not shut your car off at lights ect.. but if you will be more than a minute, shut your engine off. unlike older carburetor cars, today's fuel injection engines don't require a long warm-up-time or use much gas to restart.  Unless you are keeping warm use the quick start-and-go to save gas.

8) Check Tire pressure - According to the EPA, letting all four tires deflate by just 1 pound per square inch (psi) will reduce gas mileage by .03 percent. Tires loose pressure over time- especially in cold weather- so make sure you check monthly.

9) Clean out your car.  Emergency supplies should be carried but other extra weight will drag down fuel economy.

10) Don't be a constant lane changer- weaving in and out - slowing down spbreeding up uses more fuel - and you really won't get their any faster. Plus, you will be making other vehicles brake unnecessarily .

11) Watch how you break- slow down nicely - not all of a sudden will save engine wear and tear and keep your brakes from premature wearing. Same goes from letting off the brake - don't floor your pedal you will be wasting gas and engine wear at the same time (your not in a speed contest)

12) Track you success.  by keeping track of your gas mileage will ultimately help you improve your frugal-driving skills.

Time to be thinking about that boat?

by Sueann Blackwell-Merrillville Auto Glass & Trim on 01/31/15

Spring is just around the corner,  before you unwrap that boat clean your cover, with mild soap , rinse well and put a protector on it after it air drys.  by doing this you can add years to the life of your cover - Also check your cushions you might be surprise to feel that they are still wet.  Add a fan to circulate air and dry out your interior

Aquapel Windshield Treatment

by Sueann Blackwell-Merrillville Auto Glass & Trim on 01/30/14

With Winter hitting hard this year - I have decieded to give my car another application of Aquapel Windshield Treatment- I did the Windshield - two side door glass and mirrors and my backglass.  it make is easier for water to shed my back window since it does not have a wiper and make ice alot easier to get off.  I also added Aquapel Winshield Washer to my reseve- which is good to -30 below. 

Wow what a difference it does make in vision clearity and night driving. 

If you drive you need Aquapel  - and we also have new wiper blades to finish it off

Don't let this weather disturb your vision - Bring it to us for Aquapel Treaments you will be very glad you did

Auto Glass Replacement NW Indiana

by Sueann Blackwell-Merrillville Auto Glass & Trim on 01/01/14

Just want to talk a little about auto glass replacement in Winter months. 

Windshields and Back Glasses should not be replace outdoors.  The weather is too cold for porper adheshion and dry times for urethanes. 

Ask if your installer is using a cold weather Urethane?   If they are using a regular urethane the safe driveaway time could be weeks! Below is a chart of each manufacture of urethane - which give min temp for install and how long safe driveaway time is

I can not count how many times people have told me that you take way to long to install a windshield.... " I had my windsheild installed before and I was out within an hour "-" or he did it in my drive way in 45 mins"

It amasies me, that now one has told them the importance of semi drying in the correct temperture before driving the vehicle,  or  to limit their driving or not driving on the Highway the first day .

I Know we are in at fast pased world - and everyone has thing to do, we are so busy,  But FAST WINDSHIELD REPLACEMENTS  Should not be one of those.

I can tell you the most purchase urethane is DOW  U418  hv

Right now we are using Dow Beta One with a 1 hour driveaway time at 0 degrees Which cost three times  as much as the Dow u418hv

So, in closing not all glass installation's are the same - going on price alone should be troublesome - and if they do it in your driviway while snowing you should be worried.....

Well, Winter Weather is sure upon us........

by Sueann Blackwell-Merrillville Auto Glass & Trim on 12/11/13

We have a page for driving in the Winter :

And we do have Holiday Specials Catalog - with Special prices for the holidays-- We also have lots of stocking stuffers , and holiday mixes for those easy holiday parties making you life a lot easier, 

Ahhh its that time of year again..........Fall

by Sueann Blackwell-Merrillville Auto Glass & Trim on 09/16/13

Now is a great time to get your vehicle ready for what is ahead..  We have on special this month car cleaning products!   and also our Fresh Wave odor eleminating products. 

We also have some of Rada, Soups, dips, and dishes ready for those fall evenings.

You should clean and condition your convertible top,  and sunroof -- making sure you also clean all weather strips and lube your doors

8606 Mississippi Street , Merrillville IN 46410  
   (219) 769-1905 
  Monday - Friday  9:00AM -5:00  PM     
  Closed Saturday - Sunday