Windshields are on every car, truck, and automobile on the road. They are so ubiquitous, many assume that the auto windshield is just another part of the vehicle’s hardware. However, the windshield itself does more than just shield you from the wind.
Features of the windshield
It really will depend on the make and model of your vehicle, but many windshields have the same features that are designed to keep occupants of the vehicle safe and make it easier to drive in less-than-ideal conditions.
- Windshield wipers
- Rain sensors
When you bring in your vehicle to have your windshield repaired or replaced, make sure you consider these parts that will also need replacing.
How is a windshield made?
Each auto maker has distinct and specific ways they make windshields for their cars and trucks, but how a windshield is made tends to be the same across the board. The end result of making a good windshield, is that the glass stays in once piece.
- A layer of polyvinyl butryal (PVB) is sandwiched between two sheets of glass
- Pressure and heat are applied, which chemically and mechanically bonds the outer sheets of glass to the inner plastic layer
- The unfinished windshield is bent and cut to fit into the frame on the car or truck
- The windshield is molecularly bonded with sealant to the frame of the car, which is completely water and air tight.
Today, it is an international standard to have the windshield made from laminated glass.
Importance of the windshield
Strengthening the windshield by laminating the auto glass did two main things: improved the structural integrity of the car and greatly increased the safety of the passenger. The rigidity of the windshield and its bonds to the car strengthens the frame of the entire vehicle. Additionally, it keeps the roof from buckling in case of a rollover. Most importantly, it enables the passenger airbag to deploy properly and prevents the passenger (and driver) from being ejected from the car. A driver airbag deploys by shooting out straight from the steering wheel to cushion the impact of the driver, whereas the passenger airbag actually shoots upwards, bounces off of the windshield towards the passenger.
If your windshield is damaged or broken, you can see why it is important to more than just the driver to get your windshield fixed.