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Replacement Windscreens – a serious vehicle and road safety issue

Kennett, P, Rechnitzer, G, Childs, A, Hajj, M, Grzebieta, R H

Vehicle Safety

ARSC conference 2016

EXTENDED ABSTRACT: In modern vehicle design the car’s windscreen is integral to a vehicle’s safety and crashworthiness design. Australian Standard AS4739 (Standards Australia, 2002) for windscreen replacement stipulates the vehicle must be returned to the Original Equipment Manufacturer (OEM) standard but does not specify adhesive characteristics.

The quality of replacement windscreen installations and compliance to AS4739 is dependent on both the correct adhesive being used and that correct practice is being used by installers. However, from the experience of personnel involved in the replacement windscreen industry such as the Australian Autoglass Industry Alliance (AAIA), neither of these factors is assured as a matter of course. This Extended Abstract discusses issues associated with the after-market adhesives.

For the approximately one million windscreens being replaced in Australia each year it is a matter of good luck that a replacement windscreen is bonded with an after-market adhesive that meets the OEM specification.

This paper presents the issues regarding this situation and improvements required in the windscreen replacement industry to ensure vehicle safety is maintained.