The car windshield is one of the most integral parts of any car, even though it is not the flashiest or the most outstanding one. However, when driving on the road, car windshields play the biggest role in maintaining the safety of the people inside and also ensuring proper visibility for the driver, which is paramount. It keeps the occupants safe from debris, strong winds, and other obstructions on the road while keeping the driver’s vision unaltered from these as well. Moreover, the rear windshields also cater to the driver’s vision and regulate heat to defrost ice during winters.
Since a car windshield is often paid no attention, they’re considered the same as windows, rear, front, or door glasses. However, many don’t realize that these windshields are of different types, built for different purposes. Hence, let’s take a look at the types of car windshields used today and how they differ, based on car models.
Laminated and Tempered – the Industry Standards
The automotive industry is dominated by laminated and tempered glass when it comes to car windshields. This is mainly because of how they’re built, but most importantly, the way they help to shield the car’s occupants from harm.
When it comes to a car’s front windshield, laminated glass is the go-to for most automotive manufacturers. Laminated glass is specially built by bonding two different pieces of glass together with a PVB (poly-vinyl-butyrl) layer between them. Although breakable, this method of creating laminated glass provides optimal safety to the car’s passengers and driver, especially during a crash.
The laminated glass is built to absorb extreme impacts without breaking down into a thousand pieces. Hence, when there’s a minor collision or small object such as pebbles or rocks striking the car windshield, only the first layer of it will be damaged. However, if the impact is a bigger one, the glass will break but the PVB layer will keep it intact, preventing shards of glass from flying around.
While laminated glass is used for the front windshield, tempered glass is the go-to for the rear one. These are also known as “toughened glass” mainly because they’re four times stronger than the usual glass. Tempered glass is built to have more breakage resistance and withstand heavier loads, and offers great safety but in a different way than the laminated glass.
Upon impact, tempered glass shatters into thousands of dull-edged, tiny pieces, instead of jagged, deadly shards that can easily harm the occupants. The major difference between this and laminated glass is that the latter can be repaired if there’s a crack. However, tempered glass will need a total replacement as it shatters completely.
Differing Windshields in Different Car Models
The only similar aspect of various car windshields is how they’re mostly built of laminated glass. Other than that, they often differ, based on the model of your car. Broadly, these models are segregated into sedans, sports cars, and trucks.
Different models of cars possess different specifications in terms of width and height. Since a car windshield is designed to fit a specific vehicle perfectly, the windshield size differs as well. However, most manufacturers follow the industry standard of a standard windshield’s measurements, which is 59 inches x 31.5 inches (1). This is the specification followed for most sedans, but there’s a difference here and there, based on the particular company or model’s height. This is because sedans tend to differ when it comes to the heights, as many have taller roofs, while others have shorter ones.
Sports cars are built in a different way than the usual sedans, as they’re more aerodynamic, sleek, and compact. Hence, they use smaller and curved windshields, instead of the standard ones, to reduce blind spots, enhance safety, and maintain the aerodynamic build of the car. Moreover, such cars also use less thicker windshields, in order to reduce the car’s overall weight to reduce drag.
Most trucks or SUVs are quite tall in height, often crossing the 6 feet mark, but differ in terms of their model. The windshield used for them differs as well, in terms of design and size. However, the thickness is paramount in these vehicles, as their weight and size are bulkier. Hence, SUVs and trucks often tend to use thicker windshields for increased safety, which are slightly thicker than the standard ones used in sedans. Certain manufacturers also use split windshields to offer more safety for rugged use.
Since car windshields differ vastly, depending on your car’s model and make, you will need to know the exact specifications during replacements, to get the perfect fit. If you’re worried about windshield replacement and installations, leave it to the professionals at AIS Windshield Experts!
Replacing a car windshield is essential to maintain your vehicular safety, and the trained professionals at AIS Windshield Experts ensure that this is done in the best way possible. India’s first car glass replacement and repair specialist, AIS Windshield Experts guarantee world-class standards, top-notch products, and a hassle-free, timely experience to get your windshield replaced, just in time. Reach out to us today and get your windshield replaced with a year warranty!