Corning reaches out to auto glass repair and replacement industry at Auto Glass Week
Corning at Auto Glass Week
If a stone strikes your car windshield and ruins it, you’ll probably head for your nearest glass technician and have it replaced. But what if, instead of replacing it with a conventional soda-lime laminate, you could get a new windshield twice as tough as the one you had before?
Corning introduced that option to the auto glass repair and replacement industry in early October at the 2016 Auto Glass Week show in San Antonio, Texas. With a detailed exhibit, demonstrations, presentations, and one-on-one meetings, Corning helped industry players learn more about the advantages of laminated windows that use Corning® Gorilla® Glass for Automotive.
The innovative new windshield laminate – already being adopted by some major automakers because of its tough, lightweight, optically advantaged capabilities – presents similar benefits to the aftermarket.
A windshield made with soda lime glass as an exterior layer and Gorilla Glass for Automotive as the interior layer has several key attributes that translate into superior toughness.
- The chemical strengthening of Gorilla Glass for Automotive delivers inherently greater damage resistance.
- Because Gorilla Glass for Automotive is so thin and damage resistant, it has a natural ability to flex without breaking, helping to preserve the integrity of the entire windshield if it’s hit with a large, heavy blunt object like a hailstone.
- And the windshields using Gorilla Glass for Automotive show much greater ability to survive impacts from smaller objects, like gravel or other blunt or sharp stones.
Dr. Vikram Bhatia, director of Glazing Product and Process Development for Corning Automotive Glass, said the Auto Glass Week visitors were also intrigued by other benefits of windshields using Gorilla Glass for Automotive – including better fuel economy, lower carbon dioxide emissions, faster defrost, and lower center of gravity (which may improve handling.)
The Corning crew also fielded questions specific to auto glass replacement and repair. A few examples:
- When a crack does happen, do I need special equipment to do the repair?
Most cracks on a windshield that includes Gorilla Glass for Automotive, if they do happen, are confined to the soda-lime outer layer and don’t propagate as quickly as cracks on a conventional windshield. As a result, repairs are smaller and easier. And technicians can use the same adhesives and tools they’d use for conventional repairs.
- Isn’t a windshield using Gorilla Glass for Automotive going to cost more than one with conventional soda lime laminates?
Yes, a high-quality glass is likely to carry a premium price which will vary by size, make, and model. But because the lightweight laminate can weigh up to 40% less than other windshields, fuel economy can improve significantly -- enabling savings over the life of the vehicle and helping offset any premium.
- Can a replacement window made with Gorilla Glass for Automotive carry technology treatments like advanced head-up displays or customized darkening?
We are working with many window making companies – including our proposed joint venture with Saint-Gobain Sekurit -- to deliver a full range of features for auto glazing. If it’s included in a windshield for an original-equipment manufacturer, we will make it an option for the aftermarket as well.
Because so many consumers are already familiar with Corning® Gorilla® Glass on their mobile devices, Bhatia added, the expansion into the auto replacement glass market resonated positively with many show-goers.
“There’s great acceptance of the Corning brand, and people know about Gorilla Glass,” he said. “It seems very logical to them that it’s now coming to their cars.”