What is a rain sensor? Does my car have a rain sensor windshield?

There are a few easy ways to tell if you have a rain sensor system installed in your vehicle. Rain sensors and light sensors usually appear very similar. 

  • Do the wipers start automatically when it’s raining?
  • Is there a square panel mounted on the windshield near the rearview mirror?

If you’re looking inside the cabin of your car from the outside, the sensor would be located behind the rearview mirror and you can tell it’s the sensor because a strip of lens or film will appear facing the outside.

Some cars may have one or the other, or both. The rain sensor is also typically adjacent to the light sensor. This system turns the windshield wipers automatically by detecting rain on the windshield.

knowing where to find a windshield rain sensor on your car

How does my windshield know it’s raining?

 

Your car’s sensors can tell it is raining by measuring how many rain drops are on the windshield. The sensor detects the light reflected back internally by the windshield glass, so if there were more raindrops on the windshield, the less light would be reflected back to the sensor.

Here’s how your car windshield rain sensors work: The vehicle senses how much rain is on the windshield, speeding up the windshield wipers according to the amount of rain it detects. The sensor itself is mounted on a special bracket behind the vehicle’s rearview mirror and wired through the roof. 

What happens when your windshield experiences a chip or crack and needs repair? If the rain sensor is intact when you’re receiving auto glass services, be sure to tell your auto glass specialist so they can reattach it when replacing the windshield.

How does the rain sensor help with driving?

The rain sensor on your windshield helps keep you safe as well as other drivers. Paying attention to the road in front of you can be difficult if you are distracted, where even turning on the windshield wipers can be an effort. 

With a rain sensor, you don’t have to worry about turning on or off your windshield wipers because it is taken care of for you. Having rain sensing windshields and automatic wipers creates a benefit for you, improving your sight lines on the road and making sure you have a clear windshield from a drizzle to a down pour. 

Rain Sensors and Replacement

Even with the luxuries afforded by a rain sensing windshield, the more you drive in any weather condition, the more susceptible you are to auto glass damage. While we can repair windshield chips by patching up the damaged area with adhesive, larger damage results in complete windshield replacement.

Should you need to replace your windshield or auto glass window, inspect the rain sensor to see if the wiring is intact, as you may need to purchase a new sensor if the wiring is damaged. 

Acquiring as much information about your vehicle prior to the auto glass service will better inform Safelite technicians in how they can help you replace your auto glass and get you back on the road quickly.


To learn more about glass technologies 
that can affect getting the right windshield, please select from below. Visit glass parts to discover more the different types of glass in your vehicle.

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