Business Profiles

PPR safelight photo 0505
Safelite Auto Glass acquired all 20 Windshield World stores, including the one in Plattsburgh. Here, the new manager, Jim Cayea; Senior Technician Tim Taylor; technicians Greg Roy and Tim Baker; and Repair Medic Kim McBreairty (from left) are the five employees at their location on Margaret Street. (STAFF PHOTO/KELLI CATANA)

Area Safelite has new manager

By: DAN HEATH

PLATTSBURGH — Safelite in Plattsburgh has a new manager as a result of its acquisition of the Windshield World chain.

Jim Cayea, now the manager of the Safelite shop at 186 Margaret St., said he was the manager at Windshield World on Cornelia Street for 12 years. 

“As of Jan. 1, Safelite Auto Glass acquired all 20 Windshield World stores, including the one in Plattsburgh,” he said.

The acquisition has led to an increase in business.

“It’s created quite a workload for us here,” Cayea said. “That’s why we’ll probably need some more help.”

There are presently five employees, including Cayea, at the Plattsburgh location.

The company will operate as Safelite/Windshield World for a while so former Windshield World customers can learn about the switch. It will eventually operate solely under the Safelite name. 

Safelite offers a full range of automotive glass replacement and repair. 

“All of our work carries a lifetime and nation-wide warranty,” Cayea said.

That is available from any of more than 300 Safelite locations across the country.

In Plattsburgh, work can be done in the two bays at the shop, or a technician can do the work at the customer’s location.

The most common job is a windshield replacement, Cayea said. Crews can do outside repairs in temperatures as low as zero degrees.

“That is where our adhesives remain pliable and workable,” he said.

The shop carries an inventory of about 50 pieces of automotive glass. Cayea said he can order almost any windshield for next-day delivery.

Cayea said the key to windshield replacement is skilled labor. Technicians receive ongoing training from Safelite, and must complete a minimum of six months of training for initial certification.

Most of his crew has at least 10 years of experience.

All work is done using state-of-the-art tools and equipment, Cayea said.

The Plattsburgh location covers territory from the border south to Ticonderoga and from Lake Champlain as far west as Tupper Lake and Chateaugay, Cayea said.

The local Safelite started years ago as Triumph Auto Glass. It later was part of the Diamond Auto Glass chain until that brand was acquired by Safelite.

Originally from Lyon Mountain, Cayea entered the auto-glass industry in 1989 in the Finger Lakes region. Cayea returned to the North Country in 1996 and worked construction until he landed the job as manager at Windshield World in April 2001.

Safelite is open from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday and 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Saturday. Call 800-800-2727 or visit safelite.com to make an appointment.

The call center is open 24 hours a day, seven days a week. 

The company can bill a customer’s insurance company directly. Payment by cash, check or credit card is also available.

Columbus, Ohio-based Safelite Group is a subsidiary of Belron. According to the Safelite website, it is a multi-faceted auto-glass and claims-management service, with locations across the country.

The four main parts are Safelite Fulfillment Inc., Safelite Solutions LLC and Alliance Claims Solutions, Service Autoglass and Safelite Glass Corp. Those companies employ more than 10,000 people. 

It is the largest auto glass repair and replacement organization in the United States. Safelite’s more than 3,700 technicians serve more than 4.4 million customers each year.

Email Dan Heath:dheath@pressrepublican.com

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