Glass is often the last thing on a Corvette owner's mind. Unless there's breakage, a crack, or a major chip, even though glass is in sight, it's out of mind. However, wear and tear from the road can deteriorate the surface of automotive glass. This generally happens so slowly, like cataracts, that the diminishing clarity is seldom noticed.
During a strip and paint several years ago, a friend chided me so severely about the condition of my windshield that I replaced it. There were no stone chips or wiper marks, but the surface of the glass had thousands of tiny pits, undoubtedly from the sand blasting endured over thousands of miles of Texas and Florida driving. Facing a low-hanging sun or headlights, it was almost as bad as looking through a soapy shower curtain. After installing the new windshield, I saw how dramatically it improved the driving experience. It was like a new car again.
Side glass can suffer a similar slow deterioration. Although less prone to sand pitting, it has additional wear problems from sliding over weatherstrip and anti-rattle plates every time it moves up or down. And on earlier Corvettes, chipping at the top corners is a common problem.
Fortunately, a number of options are now available for replacement door glass. The least expensive is replacement glass without any markings. The mid-priced option sports the rather prominent Astro Ventilation logo. For a little more money still, the proper date code can be etched on the lower rear of the glass.
Follow along as we go step-by-step through door-glass replacement. Even if your door glass is still fine, you'll see where adjustments can be made to help the glass seal properly against the weatherstrip. Proper adjustment and cleaning the channels and sliders for smooth, silky operation helps prevent costly window-regulator failure down the road.