What Type of Glass is Used in Car Windshields?

Windshields are made of laminated safety glass, a type of glass made of a piece of plastic sandwiched between two layers of glass. All three layers are sealed together and air pockets removed using rollers or vacuum systems.

Automatic glass

is either tempered or laminated. The glass used for the front and rear door windows and the rear window is usually tempered, while the windshield is made of laminated glass.

Laminated glass is designed to withstand extreme impacts without breaking, helping to prevent injuries from flying shards of glass or passengers being thrown through the windshield. Tempered glass is four to five times stronger than before the tempering process. When it breaks, it is designed to break into small pieces that are less likely to cause additional injury or damage. Safety glass is used in all automotive glass, and it is made to reduce the likelihood of injury if broken.

Car windshields are made up of two pieces of glass with a thin layer of vinyl between them. The three pieces are laminated together by applying heat and pressure in an autoclave. When a small object hits a piece of safety glass, usually only the outer layer breaks. Automotive glass can also be used for sunroofs, as it is designed to be UV-resistant.

In severe impact situations, the glass “breaks” but usually does not separate because broken glass pieces adhere to the vinyl inner liner. Automotive glass is exceptionally durable and responsible for 60% of the car's structural integrity in rollover accidents, while absorbing 45% of the crash impact during a head-on collision. Tempered glass is more susceptible to breakage than laminated safety glass, which consists of two strong glass sheets that become a single thick sheet by sandwiching a layer of polyvinyl butyral in the middle. If broken, tempered glass disintegrates into small pieces the size of rock salt.

This “tempering process” makes glass many times stronger than untempered glass.

Eloise Luttenegger
Eloise Luttenegger

Proud bacon nerd. Friendly pop culture fan. Hardcore bacon scholar. Professional music expert. Beer nerd.

Leave a Comment

Required fields are marked *