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What Are the Different Types of Glass Used on Windshields

Windshields are a vital component of our cars, providing protection from the elements while driving. In order to ensure that they are up to the task, windshields are made of different types of glass that are designed to be strong and shatter-resistant. Knowing the different types of glass used on windshields can help you make an informed decision when replacing your windshield.

Laminated Glass

Laminated glass, also known as safety glass, is the most common type used in windshields. It consists of two pieces of glass that are bonded together with a thin layer of plastic film, usually polyvinyl butyral (PVB).

The primary advantage of laminated glass is its strength. The plastic layer in between the glass layers helps to absorb any impacts, making the glass much more resistant to shattering and breaking. This makes laminated glass the ideal choice for windshields, as it helps to protect the driver and passengers from any impacts. In addition, laminated glass also offers some soundproofing benefits, as the plastic layer helps to block out some external noise.

Despite its advantages, laminated glass also has some drawbacks. For one, laminated glass is heavier than regular glass, which can increase the overall weight of a car. In addition, laminated glass is also more difficult to repair than regular glass if it is cracked or damaged. This is because the plastic layer makes it more difficult to repair the glass without compromising its structural integrity.

Tempered Glass

Tempered glass is a safety glass that has been heat-treated, making it four to five times stronger than regular glass. This makes it an ideal choice for windshields, as it can withstand the impact of flying debris, such as rocks and other objects that can be kicked up by the tires of other vehicles.

Tempered glass has several advantages over regular glass. For one, it is much more resistant to shattering when exposed to high levels of force. This means that when it is struck by an object, it will break into small, harmless pieces rather than large, sharp shards that can cause injury. Additionally, it is heat-resistant, meaning that it won’t shatter when exposed to high temperatures, such as those found on hot summer days.

Despite these advantages, there are some drawbacks to using tempered glass on a windshield. For one, tempered glass is more expensive than regular glass, so it may not be a viable option for those on a tight budget. Additionally, while tempered glass is resistant to shattering, it can still be scratched or dented if something hard enough strikes it. Finally, because it is heat-treated, it can become discolored over time, reducing visibility.

Polycarbonate Glass

Polycarbonate glass is a third type of glass that is becoming increasingly popular for use in windshields. It is a thermoplastic material that is lightweight and shatter-resistant. This makes it an ideal material for windshields, as it can withstand high temperatures and will not break easily.

The pros of polycarbonate glass are that it is lighter than tempered or laminated glass, making it easier to install. It is also shatter-resistant, which makes it safer in the event of an accident. Additionally, it is more scratch-resistant than other types of glass, making it ideal for windshields that are exposed to the elements.

The cons of polycarbonate glass are that it is more expensive than other types of glass and it does not have the same clarity as other types of glass. Additionally, it is not as durable as other types of glass, which means it may need to be replaced more often.

Final Thoughts

Windshields are an important safety feature of any vehicle, and therefore it is important to understand the different types of glass used to create them. Laminated and tempered glass are the most common types of glass for windshields, with polycarbonate glass slowly increasing in popularity as well. Each type has its own set of advantages and disadvantages, so it’s important to consider all vital factors when choosing a windshield for your car. Ultimately, the type of glass used on a windshield will depend on the specific needs and budget of the vehicle owner.

Get the right windshield for your car with the help of Best Choice Auto Glass. We are your go-to repair shop on wheels, providing windshield replacement in Tulsa. Whether you have a small chip in your windshield or need your entire windshield replaced, we are committed to getting you back on the road quickly and safely. Request a quote today!

Tulsa’s #1 Auto Glass Installation & Repair Company