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Vent Glass, Quarter Glass, Sliders? A Guide to Car Window Types

car window

Do you remember when you were in high school and sitting in driver’s education class? All the parts of the car and traffic laws you had to memorize, potentially without even the aid of the Internet? It was a nightmare!

But now, things have gotten more specific and complex. Take your car window for example. How are you supposed to keep track of all the different types of windows that exist?

Well, you’re in luck! We’re here to give you a comprehensive guide on the different types of car windows. But enough preamble: let’s get started.

How Your Car Window Got To Where It Is

Before we look at the different types of car windows, it’s important to understand a bit of the history behind how the modern car window came to be.

1919 saw the first iteration of the car window (as designed by Henry Ford), which put a sheet of cellulose between two pieces of glass to help prevent the glass from shattering completely. As innovations, like curving the windshield and tempering the glass, came along, regulations came into place (roughly around 1970) to ensure car windows met a certain level of safety.

Since cars began to change and evolve with the times, car windows did as well, and these evolutions brought us the wide varieties of windows we see today.

The “Easy” Types Of Car Window

Let’s start with the ones everyone knows: the windshield and rear windshield. These windows are in place to allow for clear vision while driving coupled with protection for the driver. Side windows tend to follow a similar concept but are more based on the protection of passengers than driving visibility.

This happens through the use of a special type of glass called safety glass. To make safety glass, you put a thin sheet of see-through plastic in between two glass panes during the window-crafting process. This helps make the windshields more resistant to impact and shockwaves.

Today’s windshields have even more advancements, from simple tricks like detecting rain to turn on your wipers to giving you infrared feedback to a monitor in your car for night driving.

The “Hard” Types of Car Window

For getting a little more obscure, let’s talk about the vent and quarter glass windows. Vent glass windows were small windows that sat in front of the side windows for the driver and shotgun-seat passenger that could be opened to let cool air in. As air conditioning got more popular, these windows began to fade from popularity, but they can still be found on older cars.

Quarter glass windows are the last set of windows on the side of your car, usually coming after the end of your back passenger window. Don’t worry though: it’s made of safety glass like all the rest.

But now the big question on everyone’s mind: sunroof vs moonroof. To clear up the confusion, a sunroof is a part of the top of the car that can slide back or physically detached to allow sunlight in. By contrast, the moonroof is a non-detachable panel of glass on the top of the car that acts like a “sky window”.

You’re The Expert Now

Congratulations! You are now a bonafide expert in the art of the car window!

If you have more questions about car windows and how they operate, check out the other posts on our blog! So until next time: keep that moonroof clean, and happy driving.