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Career and Education Opportunities for Auto Glass Installers in Elgin, Illinois

For those living in the Elgin, Illinois area, there are many career and education opportunities for auto glass installers. About 650 people are currently employed as auto glass installers in Illinois. By 2016, this is expected to grow by 11% to 720 people employed. This is better than the nation as a whole, where employment opportunities for auto glass installers are expected to grow by about 1.8%. In general, auto glass installers replace or repair broken windshields and window glass in motor vehicles.

The income of an auto glass installer is about $14 per hour or $29,450 per year on average in Illinois. In the U.S. as a whole, their income is about $15 hourly or $32,110 per year on average. Auto glass installers earn less than people working in the category of Automotive generally in Illinois and more than people in the Automotive category nationally.

There are sixty-one schools of higher education in the Elgin area, including three within twenty-five miles of Elgin where you can get a degree to start your career as an auto glass installer. Auto glass installers usually hold a high school diploma or GED, so you can expect to spend only a short time training to become an auto glass installer if you already have a high school diploma.

CAREER DESCRIPTION: Auto Glass Installer

Auto Glass Installer video from the State of New Jersey Dept. of Labor and Workforce Development

In general, auto glass installers replace or repair broken windshields and window glass in motor vehicles.

Auto glass installers decide on appropriate tools and parts in line with job requirements. They also set up replacement glass in vehicles after old glass has been removed and all needed preparations have been made. Equally important, auto glass installers have to allow all glass parts installed with urethane ample time to cure, taking temperature and humidity into account. They are often called upon to prime all scratches on pinchwelds with primer and allow primed scratches to dry. They are expected to remove broken or damaged glass windshields or window glass from motor vehicles, using hand tools to remove screws from frames holding glass. Finally, auto glass installers set up rubber channeling strips around edges of glass or frames to weatherproof windows or to inhibit rattling.

Every day, auto glass installers are expected to be able to see details at a very fine level of focus. They need to twist and stretch their arms and legs to get work done. It is also important that they articulate ideas and problems.

It is important for auto glass installers to cut flat safety glass in line with specified patterns or perform precision pattern making and glass cutting to custom-fit replacement windows. They are often called upon to hold cut or uneven edges of glass against automated abrasive belts to shape or smooth edges. Somewhat less frequently, auto glass installers are also expected to cool or warm glass in the event of temperature extremes.

Auto glass installers sometimes are asked to apply urethane around the perimeter of  pinchwelds and dress the remaining urethane on the pinchwelds so that it is of uniform level and thickness. And finally, they sometimes have to remove all dirt and loose glass from damaged areas, apply primer along windshield or window edges, and allow primer to dry.

Like many other jobs, auto glass installers must be reliable and be thorough and dependable.

Similar jobs with educational opportunities in Elgin include:

  • Auto Body Mechanic. Repair and refinish automotive vehicle bodies and straighten vehicle frames.
  • Auto Mechanic. Repair automobiles, trucks, and other vehicles. Master mechanics repair virtually any part on the vehicle or specialize in the transmission system.
  • Household Appliance Repairer. Repair, adjust, or install all types of electric or gas household appliances, such as refrigerators, washers, and ovens.
  • Vending Machine Mechanic. Install, service, or repair coin, vending, or amusement machines including video games, juke boxes, or slot machines.

EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES: Auto Glass Installer Training

College of Lake County - Grayslake, IL

College of Lake County, 19351 W Washington St., Grayslake, IL 60030-1198. College of Lake County is a large college located in Grayslake, Illinois. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 16,359 students. College of Lake County has a less than one year program in Autobody/Collision and Repair Technology/Technician which graduated one student in 2008.

Kishwaukee College - Malta, IL

Kishwaukee College, 21193 Malta Rd, Malta, IL 60150-9699. Kishwaukee College is a small college located in Malta, Illinois. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 4,134 students. Kishwaukee College has a one to two year program in Autobody/Collision and Repair Technology/Technician which graduated five students in 2008.

Waubonsee Community College - Sugar Grove, IL

Waubonsee Community College, Rte 47 at Waubonsee Drive, Sugar Grove, IL 60554-0901. Waubonsee Community College is a medium sized college located in Sugar Grove, Illinois. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 9,218 students. Waubonsee Community College has a one to two year and an associate's degree program in Autobody/Collision and Repair Technology/Technician which graduated nine and two students respectively in 2008.


Glass Installer: NGA Certification can lead to better visibility, opportunities, and jobs.

For more information, see the National Glass Association website.


Elgin, Illinois
Elgin, Illinois photo by James Jordan

Elgin is located in Kane County, Illinois. It has a population of over 106,330, which has grown by 12.5% over the last ten years. The cost of living index in Elgin, 104, is above the national average. New single-family homes in Elgin cost $156,500 on average, which is far less than the state average. In 2008, three hundred thirty-two new homes were constructed in Elgin, down from seven hundred fifty-six the previous year.

The top three industries for women in Elgin are health care, educational services, and finance and insurance. For men, it is construction, metal and metal products, and administrative and support and waste management services. The average travel time to work is about 26 minutes. More than 20.5% of Elgin residents have a bachelor's degree, which is lower than the state average. The percentage of residents with a graduate degree, 6.0%, is lower than the state average.

The unemployment rate in Elgin is 12.4%, which is greater than Illinois's average of 10.5%.

The percentage of Elgin residents that are affiliated with a religious congregation, 56.0%, is more than both the national and state average. Holy Trinity Lutheran Church, Seventh Day Adventist Church and Saint Thomas More Roman Catholic Church are some of the churches located in Elgin. The largest religious groups are the Catholic Church, the Lutheran Church and the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America.

Elgin is home to the Fox Bluff Corporate Center and the Elgin Fire Station Number 2 as well as Wing Park and College Park. Shopping malls in the area include Wing Park Manor Shopping Center, Tyler Creek Plaza Shopping Center and Town and Country Plaza Shopping Center. Visitors to Elgin can choose from Elgin-Days Inn, Colonial Lodge Motel and Crowne Plaza for temporary stays in the area.