Car windshields are easily the most ignored part of any automobile and warrant your attention only when something unfortunate befalls them, like a scratch or a shatter. So much so that a spare glance from a passerby must usually make their whole day.
However, the unseen (literally), silent protectors of modern-day drivers have quite a colourful history behind them, as well as a ton of underappreciated or downright unknown functionalities, which will probably get them the praise they deserve.
So, here are some facts about car windshields that you may not be aware of.
Windshields and Safety
Today, it is a common misconception that windshields’ safety functionality only includes protecting you and your car from foreign objects. But what people don’t realise is that it plays a prime role in structurally strengthening your vehicle. For instance, they provide significant support to your car roof. If due to some unfortunate accident, your car rolls over, your car windshield prevents it from caving in and crushing you and the passengers.
Not only that, but your windscreen also absorbs shocks and collisions, preventing the impact force from reaching the interiors and, instead, diverting it to the chassis.
Lastly and most surprisingly, your car windshield also ensures proper deployment of airbags, positioning it correctly upon impact so that it doesn’t miss your body entirely. That’s another reason why windshields must be installed in a comme il faut manner.
Tinted Glass Improves Safety
Although banned in India above a certain degree, Tinting glasses actually improves your car windshield’s life. It provides a protective layer that prevents the sun’s UV rays from damaging the auto glass. It also prevents the glass from getting chipped when it comes in contact with dust and debris, thereby saving you on repair costs.
If you want to up the safety ante, you can instal laminated or tempered windshield glass. Laminated glasses are made up of multiple layers and prevent sharp objects’ penetration into the car’s body. On the other hand, tempered glass has only one layer and breaks into small particles when shattered.
Car Windshields used to be a Luxury
As hard as it is to believe, car windshields, which prevent its passengers from being thrown out, were a luxury in the olden times, which is quite ludicrous, considering its remarkable contribution to the car’s safety, visibility, and overall structural integrity.
Back in the 1900s, when the first automobiles began to populate the streets, a car windshield was an add-on item, much like today’s stereo speakers and rear cameras. The windshield was just a thin sheet of glass back them, which you could fold down if it got dirty. Only the wealthiest of car owners could afford one for themselves.
Then came Oldsmobile in 1915, which made windshield a standard car feature, thereby ending the unreasonable luxury norms.
The Invention of Shatterproof Glass was an Accident
Yes, your vehicle’s prime defence against accidents was an accident in itself. A wee French chemist named Eduoard Benedictus had dropped one of his flasks while performing one of his experiments, which is quite a typical occurrence in a scientist’s daily tinkerings. But the thing about this flask was, it was covered in a layer of cellulose nitrate. This covering caused the flask to bounce on the ground rather than shattering and spilling its contents.
Benedictus didn’t patent this discovery right away and waited until 1909 to declare it as his intellectual property. And as we all know, this contribution led to the invention of the laminated and shatterproof glasses that are extensively used today and protect the modern driver from the road’s uncertainties.
The Wipers were Invented by a Woman
Though nothing to be surprised about, it was one Mary Anderson that invented the indispensable windshield wipers that are so useful today. She got her inspiration from a struggling trolley car driver, who couldn’t see due to snow covering his windows. Her invention was widely accepted, so much so that she was granted a 17-year patent in the same year.
A decade down the line, the wipers were already used by thousands of Americans, which is now used by the whole world.
Windshield Repair is the Most popular Insurance claim
It may come as a surprise, but the most recurrent auto insurance claims filed revolve around damaged or broken windshields. Although, while a damaged windshield may not completely break apart, even small chips and cracks can seriously compromise its integrity, and with it your safety. Therefore, it is essential to get these slight disfigurements right away, before they grow into something inconvenient.
Whether it be a piece of flying debris, dust, or an auto accident, defective car windshields cost insurance companies a lot of money every year.
Does your car windshield need a repair or replacement? Well, you’re in the right place. At AIS Windshield Experts, we offer top-notch windshield products and services, with installations carried out by trained professionals well-versed in the international safety standards.
Get in touch with us today.