Things You Should Know About Your Rear Windshield

Car facing the sun Your rear windshield is just as important as your front windshield. While your rear windshield is similar in function to your front windshield, it also has some key differences. Here is more information about your vehicle’s rear windshield, its features, and potential problems.

What Is the Difference Between the Front and Rear Windshields?
Like the front windshield, the rear windshield also protects your occupants against road hazards. The rear windshield also adds structural support and protects passengers in a roll-over crash.

However, the main difference between the two types of glass is that the front windshield is made with laminated glass. Laminated glass involves a thin film that sandwiches the glass in between.

This helps strengthen the glass and reduces the chance of pieces of glass and debris entering the passenger compartment.

Rear windshields do not have the layer of film like the front windshield, and it is made up entirely of tempered glass. This does not mean that the rear windshield is not safe. Tempered glass is made by heating and cooling the glass quickly. This process not only makes the glass strong, but allow it to shatter into small, less harmful pieces rather than sharp glass shards when an object strikes it.

What Kinds of Features Do Rear Windshields Have?
Rear windshields have added features and accessories and are sometimes made into different shapes. In some vehicles, they are split into two pieces for style and structural enhancement. Pickup trucks often have sliding windows so that you can easily reach into the truck’s bed. Other vehicles, such as sports utility vehicles, have rear windshields that open and close like the side windows.

Many cars have windshields with electrical elements wiring that are either horizontal across the back, or around the edges of the glass. Horizontal lines are usually for defrosting and defogging the rear windshield, a useful feature for cold or exceptionally wet areas. Radio antennas may also be integrated with the defogger, or have its own wiring around the edge.

What Are the Potential Problems of Rear Windshields?
Because the rear windshield is made of tempered glass, instead of laminate glass, it can be subject to different problems than the front windshield. For example, a front windshield will often crack, but not shatter, if hit by a small object. This feature helps preserve your visibility until you can get the glass repaired. However, a rear windshield could completely shatter under the same conditions.

Another problem that may happen to rear windshields is what is known as spontaneous shattering. Some people have reported that their windshields shattered when they slammed a door or hatch. However, chances are that something had already weakened the glass in these cases. Heating element malfunctions have also been known to contribute to spontaneous shattering.

What Are Common Reasons For Rear Windshield Replacement?
Rear windshields rarely have any problems, but if they shatter or break in any way, then they must be completely replaced. Front windshields, by contrast, are often repairable if they have a small crack. Don’t continue to drive your car without a rear windshield, because you will put your passengers at risk of injury, especially in a roll-over crash.

Your rear windshield is important, so if you have problems, need a replacement, or you want to add tinting, then make sure you have the work done by a professional. Contact Aaron Auto Glass and we will inspect and replace your rear windshield if needed. We service all types of vehicle makes and models and guarantee our work. Call, text, or email us for a free quote for any of our Illinois, Wisconsin, or Indiana locations.

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