Waterbar on Anderson Casement window. How important in this situation?

The windows we're talking about might be original, circa 1989. I found that the waterbar at the top was hitting (what I assume) was fascia ... bent up to where I couldn't open the window. I was able to run a putty knife along the one.... and press down a bit and got it to pass the fascia (the window is inset under this fascia about 8 inches). But the other window was shot. Ripped and bent so I got the putty knife under it and managed to pull it out. So I have this window, that as I say is inset about 8 inches ... and this "v' shaped waterbar at the top. I think I'd need some serious horizontal rain to get in there ... so question is: Being probably from 1989... prior to 2000 at best if they were replaced (and I doubt it)... is this waterbar that important in the scheme of things? And two, can it be replaced? I did find some old instructions online about vinyl to vinyl adhesive... and I imagine the sash would have to come out ... but I can't afford to replace 15 windows because one waterbar on one sash is destroyed. (I also found a company online where the waterbar is possibly $5? I'd call a local provider for the windows first ... ) So, any ideas, thoughts, suggestions appreciated.
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