Are Car Windshields Tempered Glass?

There are two different types of glass that are used on your windshield or your windows.

They are:

Tempered Auto Glass

It is also known as toughened glass. It is created by heating and rapidly cooling a cut-out piece of glass in a process known as quenching. After the process, the glass produced is 4 to 5 times stronger than before. Tempered glass is mostly used for passenger windows.

Laminated Auto Glass

This type of glass is created by bonding multiple layers of glass together under conditions of high pressure and heat, with polyvinyl butyral resin. After the process, single sheets of glass with multiple layers are produced. The resin polyvinyl butyral gives the glass high sound insulation and keeps it from breaking apart easily.

Usually, laminated glass bends and flexes before shattering. It also blocks 99% of UV light transmission.

Tempered vs Laminated Glass For Windshields

Tempered glass is stronger than laminated glass but it is the latter that is used for windshields. The reasons for this are:

  • So that when windshields shatter, all the pieces are kept in place. This offers the highest levels of safety in the event of a crash
  • Since laminated glass has two pieces of glass with a thin layer of vinyl between, only the outer layer of the windshield breaks in case a small object hits the windshield