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Career and Education Opportunities for Auto Glass Installers in Cedar Rapids, Iowa

For those living in the Cedar Rapids, Iowa area, there are many career and education opportunities for auto glass installers. About 180 people are currently employed as auto glass installers in Iowa. By 2016, this is expected to grow by 12% to about 200 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%. Auto glass installers generally replace or repair broken windshields and window glass in motor vehicles.

The income of an auto glass installer is about $11 hourly or $24,730 yearly on average in Iowa. In the U.S. as a whole, their income is about $15 per hour or $32,110 per year on average. Compared with people working in the overall category of Automotive, people working as auto glass installers in Iowa earn less. They earn more than people working in the overall category of Automotive nationally.

There are thirteen schools of higher education in the Cedar Rapids area, including one within twenty-five miles of Cedar Rapids 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 studying to be 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 Cedar Rapids 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.

EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES: Auto Glass Installer Training

Kirkwood Community College - Cedar Rapids, IA

Kirkwood Community College, 6301 Kirkwood Blvd SW, Cedar Rapids, IA 52406-2068. Kirkwood Community College is a large college located in Cedar Rapids, Iowa. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 15,241 students. Kirkwood Community College has a one to two year program in Autobody/Collision and Repair Technology/Technician which graduated nineteen students in 2008.


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

For more information, see the National Glass Association website.


Cedar Rapids, Iowa
Cedar Rapids, Iowa photo by Davumaya

Cedar Rapids is located in Linn County, Iowa. It has a population of over 128,056, which has grown by 6.0% over the last ten years. The cost of living index in Cedar Rapids, 78, is well below the national average. New single-family homes in Cedar Rapids are valued at $103,900 on average, which is far less than the state average. In 2008, two hundred ninety-nine new homes were built in Cedar Rapids, up from two hundred ninety-eight the previous year.

The three big industries for women in Cedar Rapids are health care, educational services, and finance and insurance. For men, it is construction, professional, scientific, and technical services, and accommodation and food services. The average commute to work is about 17 minutes. More than 28.4% of Cedar Rapids residents have a bachelor's degree, which is higher than the state average. The percentage of residents with a graduate degree, 7.4%, is lower than the state average.

The unemployment rate in Cedar Rapids is 6.0%, which is less than Iowa's average of 6.1%.

The percentage of Cedar Rapids residents that are affiliated with a religious congregation, 57.0%, is more than the national average but less than the state average. Seventh Day Church of God, Sevanth-Day Adventist Church and Hope Lutheran Church are some of the churches located in Cedar Rapids. The largest religious groups are the Catholic Church, the United Methodist Church and the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America.

Cedar Rapids is home to the Brucemore and the Admissions Office as well as Tomahawk Park and Noelridge Park. Shopping centers in the area include Mays Shopping Center, Lindale Plaza Shopping Center and Town and Country Shopping Center. Visitors to Cedar Rapids can choose from Howard Johnson, Marriott Cedar Rapids and Clarion Hotel & Convention Center for temporary stays in the area.