The windshield on your car not only allows you to see clearly when you drive, but it also protects you from injury. This thick glass is an important part of your vehicle, and it should be maintained just like any other component. Let’s take a closer look at the windshield and why it’s so essential for your safety as well as what types of damage the windshield can endure. With proper care, your windshield should last the life of your vehicle.
Most windshields are made of laminated safety glass. This glass is constructed with two panes of safety glass bonded together by a middle layer of a strong adhesive or laminating material. The material is called polyvinyl butyral or PVB and is a special tear-resistant plastic. This layer of plastic is what holds the two panes of glass together. If you’re in an accident, the windshield will not completely shatter or disintegrate thanks to this unique construction. Safety glass can be found on vehicle roofs, helping to prevent a total collapse of the roof in the event of a rollover. The safety glass may also support an airbag that has been inflated once it’s deployed after an accident has occurred.
Causes of Windshield Damage
Even though your windshield is pretty tough, it’s not completely immune to damage. Even a minor accident can cause the windshield to develop a small crack in the glazing. Windshields that are exposed to harsh weather can expand and contract, causing it to become weaker over time. Minor chips and scratches can develop in your windshield due to dust, sand, and rocks that hit the protective glass as you drive. Even tiny dust and other particles can stick to your windshield wipers and cause tiny scratches that can become more visible over time. Delamination can also occur on your windshield. This is when a milky appearance forms on the glazing and means that the PVB layer may be separating from the glass. This is an issue that should be addressed as soon as possible.
It’s easy to ignore minor scratches or dings in your windshield. Over time, those minor annoyances can become a serious hazard if you don’t take care of them. At night, the small scratches can diffract the lights, making it difficult to see and causing a serious distraction. Delamination is even worse. This can make your entire windshield opaque, which means you won’t even be able to see through it any longer. In order to maintain your windshield, get any small cracks fixed as soon as possible. If the entire windshield is turning white, it’s likely time to have the entire thing replaced so you can see clearly and drive safely.
For all your vehicle maintenance and repair needs, call University Auto Repair in Flagstaff at 928-433-0025 today!