Have you ever gotten lost in the matrix of black dots that line the top of the windshield of your car?
Not the kind of Matrix where Keanu Reeves makes an appearance, (unless you’re very lucky), but a revolutionary design of dizzying little black dots that experts call a “marvel of engineering,” that is “one of the most underappreciated” features of a car.
Keep reading to learn why those black dots are painted on your windshield!
Present in almost all cars today, the embossed black dots lining the windshield of your car never get the credit they deserve. Many drivers look right through them (literally) and some shrug them off as unnecessary windshield décor.
But the designs on the windshield are far more important than just décor.
Inside the black band on the window are large dots that gradually dissolve into smaller dots. The frit band, that frames the frit or dot matrix, is made of rough-textured enamel paint, which allows a better grip for the glass and glue, securing the position of your windshield to the vehicle.
Considered by experts a “marvel of engineering,” the black frame also act as a sun guard from ultraviolet rays, protecting the adhesive from melting.
In a blog post, North Carolina’s DeDona Auto Glass explains: “The modern windshield is a marvel of engineering, and dare we say one of the most underappreciated components of a vehicle. Part of that engineering involved how the windshield is bonded to the frame.” The post continues, “While the inward facing side of the frit allows adhesive to bond to the glass, the outward facing side of the frit acts as a shield against UV radiation in order to protect the adhesive bond, which would otherwise be weakened by continual exposure to direct sunlight.”
The dot matrix – the series of dots that gradually decreases in size – helps distribute temperature evenly to lessen optical distortion or “lensing.”
This feature is significantly important during production when the glass in the windshield is exposed to temperatures just under 1,300°F.
The line of ceramic paint, required as explained above, heats up way faster than the naked windshield glass, resulting in uneven heat distribution of heat. This creates “lensing” – making straight lines look curved – which is useful for distorting light in glasses, contacts, microscopes, and telescopes, but extremely dangerous on the windshield of a vehicle.
The gradually disappearing black dot matrix manipulates the heat and spreads it out evenly, protecting the window.
And let’s also give credit for its mesmerizing pattern! “The dissolving/shrinking effect of the black dots provides a more visually appealing transition from the black border of the frit to the transparent glass,” writes DeDona Auto Glass.
But most importantly, like Reeves, the matrix on a windshield holds some superpowers, making it less vulnerable to destruction.
Did you know why those dots were on your windshield? Please share this story and let others know!