How Strong Are Modern Windshields?

You’ve probably seen a TV or movie scene where someone hits the windshield with a crowbar or baseball bat. Or maybe it’s vehicles hitting lamposts. Either way, it’s a common trope for windshields to shatter into tiny pieces. But this only happens in Hollywood – not in real life.

Modern windshields are quite strong. They don’t break as easily as most people think they would.


What Are Modern Windshields Made Of?


Modern windshields aren’t made of ordinary glass. They won’t crack or break with the least amount of force. Neither will they shatter into a hundred pieces upon impact. This is because modern windshields are made with a tough material called tempered glass. Tempered glass is a heat-hardened material. Plus, it has an extra layer of plastic laminate to hold it in together.


Standard grade varieties usually have two layers of tempered glass. They are placed between industrial-grade plastic and bonded together by a heating process.


In a real-life setting, if someone hits a windshield with a baseball bat, it will only fracture or splinter. It will never shatter completely. You also won’t see pieces of glass flying into the air, since there is an extra layer of plastic laminate which keeps them in place.


It’s true that older windshields were vulnerable to shattering from impact. However, modern windshields no longer suffer the same issue since they’re already laminated.


There are two reasons why modern windshields are laminated:


  • The first is personal safety. The addition of plastic laminate on modern windshields reduces risks for injuries. Old glass used to pose these risks due to shattering glass.


  • Another reason is for the security of your belongings. Modern windshields deter thieves who might try to break your car’s windows.


The True Strength of Modern Windshields


Although durable, modern windshields are not impermeable. They will still crack, break, or buckle with the right amount of force. It can even splinter with enough impact or with the use of heavy, blunt weaponry.


The only thing it will not do is shatter. If it does break, there won’t be any sharp, jagged edges. Thanks to the extra layer of plastic laminate, the edges stay smooth even during breakage.


The Cost of Replacing Broken or Damaged Windshields


If you need to have your windshield repaired or replaced, there are plenty of companies specializing in these services. You do have to prepared for the costs. Modern windshields are made of specialized material. So it makes sense that repairing or replacing them is going to be expensive.


You can cut costs by searching for companies with cheap rates. Although this won’t always guarantee quality work.  If you don’t want to compromise good quality for a low price, you should look for professionals.


Don’t worry about not having enough budget to pay for repair or replacement out of pocket. There are several companies which offer budget-friendly payment options. You can opt for installment to cover your windshield’s repair or replacement. That way, you can spread out payment for weeks or months, depending on how much you can afford.