Everything you need to know about laminated Glass
October 23, 2023
Is laminated glass breakable?
Laminated glass is a specialized type of glass that offers unique properties and advantages, especially in the context of automotive glass. In this blog by Nuvision Auto Glass, we will delve into the characteristics of laminated glass, its construction, and its breakability, with a particular focus on autoglass.
What is laminated glass?
Laminated glass, sometimes referred to as safety glass, is a type of glass that consists of two or more layers of glass bonded together with a layer of interlayer material, typically made of polyvinyl butyral (PVB). This interlayer is what sets laminated glass apart from other types of glass. It is this interlayer that makes laminated glass not only breakable but also incredibly resilient in specific ways.
Construction of Laminated Glass
Laminated glass is manufactured by sandwiching the interlayer material between two or more layers of glass. The process typically involves the following steps:
- Cutting: Sheets of glass are cut to the desired size.
- Cleaning: The glass sheets are cleaned and prepared for lamination.
- Interlayer Placement: The PVB interlayer is placed between the glass sheets.
- Lamination: The sandwiched layers are heated and pressed together to form a strong, composite structure.
Breakability of Laminated Glass
Is laminated glass breakable? The short answer is yes, but it’s not that simple. Laminated glass is breakable, but the way it breaks is distinctive. When subjected to an impact or stress, the glass may crack or chip, but the interlayer prevents the glass from falling apart completely. Instead, the glass remains intact, and the interlayer holds it together. This is why it’s considered a safety glass.
Laminated glass is designed to withstand significant impacts without shattering. This is a critical feature in the context of automotive glass. When debris, such as rocks or other objects, hit a laminated windshield, it might chip or crack, but the glass won’t disintegrate. This ensures that the driver’s vision remains clear, reducing the risk of accidents.
Protection Against Forced Entry
Laminated glass also provides protection against forced entry. It’s not easy to break through laminated glass because the interlayer acts as a barrier. This feature is important for vehicle security.
Laminated glass can also be manufactured with UV-protective layers. This helps reduce the amount of harmful ultraviolet (UV) radiation that enters the vehicle, protecting passengers from skin damage and reducing interior fading.
Maintenance and Repairs
While laminated glass is more resilient than standard glass, it is not indestructible. Cracks or chips can still occur, and when they do, it’s essential to address them promptly. Small cracks or chips can often be repaired, but extensive damage may require replacement. Proper maintenance and regular inspections of your vehicle’s laminated glass are vital for your safety.
Laminated Glass for Windshields
In the context of autoglass, laminated glass is the preferred choice for windshields. It offers several advantages that are crucial for driver and passenger safety. In the event of an accident, the laminated windshield remains intact, preventing the occupants from being ejected from the vehicle and reducing the risk of injury. This is why laminated glass has become the industry standard for automotive windshields.
However, as mentioned earlier, laminated glass is not immune to damage. It can still break or chip under certain circumstances, especially if subjected to a severe impact. In such cases, it’s important to address the damage promptly. Small chips or cracks can be repaired by filling the damaged area with a clear resin, which restores the structural integrity of the glass and maintains the optical clarity of the windshield.
Laminated glass in side windows and rear windows of vehicles is typically made thinner than windshields. This thinner laminated glass still offers safety benefits, such as protection against forced entry and reduced risk of injury in the event of an accident, but it may not be as impact-resistant as windshields. Therefore, side and rear windows made of laminated glass can break under significant force or impact, just like any other glass.
While laminated glass is breakable, it possesses unique characteristics that set it apart from standard glass. It offers enhanced safety and security, particularly in the context of automotive glass. Nonetheless, it is essential to recognize that laminated glass is not invincible and can still be damaged. Regular maintenance and prompt repairs or replacements are crucial for ensuring the continued safety and integrity of laminated glass in vehicles.
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