Is Investing in Jeep Wrangler Windshield Protection a Good idea?


Whether you’re out crawling rocks or grabbing groceries, there’s no question that owning a Jeep is a lot of fun. Everyone has different reasons for buying a Jeep, but at the end of the day we all have one thing in common - we’re all bound to become members of the cracked windshield club sooner or later. 

To say that the Wrangler (& now Gladiator) windshield is notorious for breaking often would be an understatement. The flat, basically vertical windshield may be an iconic style, but it’s definitely a rock chip magnet and if you’re a long-time Jeep owner, you probably have your glass repair shop on speed dial at this point. 

Knowing this, it’s no wonder that windshield protection film for Jeeps is becoming an increasingly popular item, especially for newer Jeeps. Luckily, in 2023, there are actual ways to protect your glass that don’t compromise your driving experience but are easy on the wallet.

If you’re looking for an option to protect your Jeep but don’t know where to start - don’t work, we’ve got you covered. In this blog post, we’ll break down what windshield protection is, and why you need it for your Jeep like…yesterday. 

What is Windshield Protection Film?

Although you’ve probably heard of windshield protection film, we’re here to give you a little refresher just in case. 

Windshield protection film is a thin, transparent film that you install on the outside of your windshield to protect it from rock chips or other damage. We usually say it’s kind of like a phone screen protector - but a lot more heavy duty and made specifically for the windshield. 

While we’re not going to go into a comparison of the different types of windshield protection film options in this blog post (check out this one if you’re curious), the idea is that the film absorbs the impact of any rocks or debris that hit the surface of the windshield and acts as a “shock absorbing layer” to prevent windshield damage. 

The concept itself may be simple, but the actual technology that goes into it is a little more complicated. It’s relatively difficult to make a film that is thick enough to absorb the impact effectively, while also ensuring that it has high optical clarity and is resistant to scratching from the wiper blades (because what’s the point if you can’t even use your wiper blades?). 

While every film on the market uses slightly different technology, ExoShield ULTRA gets around these challenges by incorporating tiny nano-sized ceramic particles into the topcoat of the film to increase the ‘hardness’ which is basically a scientific way of saying it won’t scratch easily. Because these hard ceramic particles are so tiny, they won’t affect the clarity of the film, and once it’s installed and given time to cure, it should look like there’s pretty much nothing on the windshield at all. 

Disclaimer: it’s important to be aware that not all windshield protection films are created equal! Make sure to do your research before choosing a film to put on your windshield. 

Why Your Jeep Needs Windshield Protection

The Cost of Windshield Replacements for Jeeps

Back in the glory days of $100 windshield replacements, blasting through a few windshields a year was at worst, a bit of a hassle. 

In 2023, that’s no longer the case. Most new Jeep windshield replacements will run you upwards of $1100 largely due to the advanced sensors behind your windshield that need to be recalibrated every time your glass is replaced. 

Don’t believe us? Try requesting a quote through an online windshield repair quote tool and see for yourself! 

For those of us facing expensive windshield replacement costs, adding a sacrificial layer to reduce the chances of windshield damage is a no-brainer. 

Off-Road Protection

Your Jeep may be made for adventure, but unfortunately your windshield was not. With all the money Jeep owners spend in upgrades to improve the off-road performance of their Wrangler, most of us forget one of the more fragile parts - the windshield. 

Especially when you’re out on the road with your buddies whose massive tires are launching rocks straight into your windshield, it’s basically inevitable that you’re going to get at least a chip in your glass. 

While you’re off-roading, you may not be traveling at high speeds, but you’re much more likely to find yourself on dirt covered or gravel roads on your way there, which is just a broken windshield waiting to happen. And if you don’t want to have to skip out on the next trail run because your Jeep is in the shop, getting windshield protection is a must. 

On-Road Protection

If you’ve made it this far thinking that you’re safe out there if you’re not doing much off-roading and just using your Jeep to commute to work every day - think again.

Believe it or not, most rock chips don’t actually happen while you’re doing something cool like trail riding. It’s much more likely that the damage is done while you’re doing something boring like commuting to work or heading to the mall on a local highway. This is because of the higher speeds that you (and the vehicles around you) are driving at while you’re commuting on the highway, which leads to high-speed projectiles in the form of a rock being flung at your windshield without you even realizing it. 

How Much Does it Cost to Protect Your Jeep Windshield?

In some cases, windshield protection can be an investment. Especially if you’re looking to protect the windshield on an ultra-rare or exotic vehicle, you’ll need to go to an installer to have it professionally cut and molded to fit the curvature of your windshield.

Luckily, if you drive a Jeep (or a Bronco), there are some more cost-effective options available to you. 

Option #1: Get a DIY Kit

Windshield protection film kits are becoming increasingly popular amongst Jeep owners, probably because many of us are so used to tackling weekend DIY projects on our vehicles anyway. ExoShield ULTRA is a DIY windshield protection film kit that comes with ready-to-install film, plus a toolkit with everything you’ll need to install the film yourself. There is no complicated heat shrinking or cutting required with these kits, and if you’ve got a clean space and are good at following instructions, it should be something you can handle yourself. 

These kits will typically run you anywhere from $180-200 including the tools, which is far less than a windshield replacement on a new JL or JT.

Option #2: Go to a Professional Installer

Whether you don’t have the time, patience, or desire to install it yourself, that’s no problem. Finding a professional installer will help to make sure that you get a clean, contamination-free install on your Jeep, and give their expertise, it shouldn’t take them long to get the job done. You can either purchase a DIY kit and take it in to your favourite local tint or PPF shop to have it installed or search for a certified windshield protection film installer to have them cut and fit it to your vehicle for you. 

Having a professional do it for you will typically cost you $350-450 all-in, but this can depend on where you go as labor rates will vary based on location. 

Should you get windshield protection for your Jeep?

If you drive a newer Jeep with a windshield that is expensive to replace, the answer is pretty obvious. The price you pay to have the windshield protected will pay off many times over when you don’t have to replace your windshield every few months. 

For owners of older Jeep models, you may want to consider a few factors such as the average cost to replace your windshield, and the current availability of windshields for your model. While cost may not be a big factor for you, in some cases finding vintage windshields can prove difficult and the last thing you want is to be stuck without glass for an extended period of time!

At the end of the day, doing a bit of research into the cost of replacement vs protection should tell you exactly what you need to do!

Learn More About ExoShield Products


Looking for the right installer for your automotive protection film? Click here for a map of certified installers.

Looking for a windshield protection film installer?

Check out our map to find our list of certified windshield protection film installers.

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