Skip to Content

How To Remove Scratches From A Car Windshield

How To Remove Scratches From A Car Windshield

Realizing you have gotten some scratches on your car windshield can be very frustrating, but they can be removed if you follow some simple steps.

All of us at some point have dealt with looking out our windshield and seeing a scratch across it.

Not only are scratches bothersome, but they can also be dangerous, depending on how deep they are and if they’re significant enough to cause a larger crack.

There are 5 ways you can remove scratches from your car windshield, including using clear nail polish, using baking soda and toothpaste, and buying a store-bought scratch remover or jeweler’s rouge. If all else fails, then it’s time to call in the professionals.

Though there are a variety of methods to remove scratches from a car windshield, knowing which to choose and when is not the kind of knowledge most of us carry around in our back pocket.

Our cars are big investments and taking care of them is something we need to prioritize.

It’s important to know when a problem like a scratch on a windshield is an annoyance or possibly more problematic.

Read on to find out what I’ve learned about windshield scratches and how to remove them.

 Car Windshield

How to Remove Scratches From a Car Windshield

Scratches on a car windshield can result from a number of things: weather, foreign objects, and even faulty or old windshield wipers.

Though minor scratches tend to be more of an annoyance than anything, if left alone they can easily result in larger cracks across the glass that can end up causing significant visibility issues to the driver and can also compromise the overall integrity of the glass. 

Identifying and dealing with minor scratches as quickly as possible is important to the overall integrity of your windshield and the safety of the people in your car. 

Luckily, there are several ways that you may be able to fix those scratches without investing a ton of money or time.

1. Use Clear Nail Polish

Clear nail polish is a great tool to have around the house as well as outside of it. Clear nail polish works as a sealant, a glue, and as a protective layer for many different surfaces.

Not just for fingernails, this stuff is strong and capable of doing a lot more tasks than just making the tips of our fingernails shine. 

Dab the nail polish into the crack, wiping any excess off with a soft cloth. As it dries, you can gently run your cloth over the crack to avoid any excess polish from leaking out.

Once the polish dries, your crack should disappear, if it was a very fine, surface crack.

2. Use Baking Soda and Toothpaste

The combination of toothpaste and baking soda can be a great fix for glass scratches, especially if they are not deep.

Toothpaste and baking soda act as a mild abrasive and will level out the glass around the scratch, then fill, buff, and polish the unsightly scratch, restoring your windshield back to its normal look.

Mix a small amount of toothpaste (the normal kind, not the gel) with a ½ teaspoon of baking soda. Gently rub the mixture against the scratch, making sure to use a non-abrasive cloth, or even your finger.

Let the mixture sit for a minute or two. Then wipe away the excess with a wet cloth, then re-wipe with a dry one. 

If the scratch isn’t too deep, you should see immediate results and a windshield that is now polished and smooth. 

3. Use a Store-Bought Scratch Remover Like Cerium Oxide

If the above home remedies don’t get rid of the unsightly scratches, it may be time to try a product that is actually designed for removing marks from your car’s glass.

Cerium oxide is found in most of these products and is a compound that is made from the rare earth metal, Cerium. It is used to polish numerous surfaces, especially glass surfaces.

Like toothpaste, it is abrasive and will roughen the glass around the scratch to create a more level surface between the two, making the scratch on your windshield virtually “disappear.” 

Using a store-bought product that contains cerium oxide is best for scratches that are a bit deeper, but haven’t yet turned from a scratch into a crack. 

You should apply this product in the same way you would the toothpaste and baking soda mixture, but be vigilant about (gently) wiping the surface with water as you apply.

The cerium oxide is more abrasive than the toothpaste/baking soda mixture and can cause more scratches if you are not careful.

4. Use a Store-Bought Compound Like Jeweler’s Rouge

Jeweler’s rouge is a polishing compound that jewelers use often for fine jewelry, but can be bought online.

The main ingredient in it is iron oxide, which is the fancy name for rust. 

Jeweler’s rouge is a great option for removing scratches because it’s a bit abrasive but won’t cause additional marks on your windshield.

Jewelers use this compound mainly for removing scratches in diamonds, so it makes sense it would work well on a car windshield.

In order to work effectively, you may want to add a little distilled water to make it less gritty.

Apply it with your finger to the scratch, then wipe away. 

5. Call in Professional Help

When all else fails, it may be time to call in professional help to remove your windshield scratches.

A scratch that can’t be removed with one of the above methods can eventually turn into a crack that may have you replacing your entire windshield. 

Can a Scratch Develop Into a Crack?

The chances of a scratch developing into a crack are low, but still very possible.

Scratches are surface-level imperfections that don’t, in any way, compromise the structural integrity of your car windows. 

On the other hand, a crack extends deeper into the car window and may develop into bigger dents if not repaired in time.

Summing Up How to Repair Scratches from a Car Windshield

If there’s a crack on your windshield, don’t worry. Before spending the money to take it in to a professional to get it fixed, try some of these great home remedies first.

Utilizing clear nail polish, jeweler’s rouge, or baking soda and toothpaste can be great options before calling in the professionals.

Good luck with fixing your car windshield!

Zach Reed

Hi, I'm the founder of! Having owned a wide variety of vehicles in my life, I was astounded at how hard it can be to find answers to common automotive questions. Rather than sit idly, I decided to create this website to help others!