ISO advice about windshield replacement #carrepair


Has anyone had to replace a windshield lately? I had one of those little pings from a rock. Safelite came out to "repair" it for free but it didn't work. Now I have a 20-inch or so crack in the window and I need to replace the whole thing.

Geico has a deal with Safelite and says it will cost more than my deductible of $500 to replace the windshield. It seems a conflict of interest that Safelite's repair didn't work and now they get the replacement business. Even if the crack didn't start for a couple of years.

Ignoring that, I got an estimate from someone who offered to replace it for $250. That a big difference from $500. Does anyone have an idea what this should cost? Or recommendations for an auto glass place?

If not, how should I shop for glass people and figure out a reasonable price for a replacement?

Safelite supposedly offers a lifetime guarantee - the car's seven years old. But I'm sure there are all sorts of exceptions.
I will ask if others offer a warranty of some sort.

Any advice?