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Help. My 98 Ls400 Has A Big Crack On The Winshield.


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I want to know whether it is worthy of replacing it with a factory one made in Japan. I am living in Northern Virginia. I called the local glass shop and the manager said he could replace it with non-brand one for about $260 including everything. He said it is of the same quality as genuine one and the Lexus dealer will charge $900 for the winshield alone. Does it sound right?

In addtion, he said it will take longer to replace the Lexus winshield but didn't mention the reason. Any idea?


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There have been a number of past threads on this forum in which people have expressed strong opinions on both sides of the argument -- aftermarket and OEM.

I had an aftermarket windshield installed on my first LS400 after driving it about 10 - 11 years and then drove it another couple of years with the aftermarket one -- I couldn't tell the difference except of course the new aftermarket windshield was flawless and the original OEM was badly pitted.

My wife's Camry windshield was replaced several years ago with an aftermarket one and we can't tell any difference in quality.

One issue you may run into is that all the OEM colors may not available in an aftermarket windshield. For example, my 2000 LS400 has a bronze OEM windshield and, last time I checked, bronze was not available in the aftermarket. Not that it matters since I prefer gray anyway.

IMO, the main issue is less with the windshield and more with the experience level and skill of the installer. On my 90 LS400, I tried to address this issue by having my windshield replaced at a body shop owned by the same company that owned a Lexus dealership. The body shop subcontracted the work out but at least they checked the quality. Also, the body shop didn't particularly recommend using Lexus glass -- they said they had had good experience with aftermarket glass so that is what I went with.

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Seriously, aftermarket glass is only different from OE in color choices, I'd save the money and go that route in a heartbeat. I've always used aftermarket, PPG usually, with no problems.

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I wouldn't say aftermarket and oem are no different other than color, but the differences between the two don't justify the cost difference. Us 4runner guys are replacing our windshields all the time due to the flex of the car, rock chips, etc. In fact, an aftermarket windshield was installed by the dealership who sold the car to me, and it needs to be replaced again due to a crack. Windnoise differences from aftermarket and oem can be addressed with a coat of rain-x, to smooth the glass out even further. Save the money, buy an aftermarket windshield. It's been my experience that Murphy, and his damn laws, always play in the realm of a windshields and door dings. Buy the oem glass, and a bird will drop a rock from about 100 feet up while you're driving down the road, and put a chip right in your eyeline. Fix the only door ding you've got on a car, and you get two more next week. Buy aftermarket windshield, and no problems. Leave the door ding alone, and no more dings. I hope that when I die someday, I get a chance to meet Mr. Murphy :chairshot: , he's a real chump!

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