What Is an Infrared Windshield For?by Carl Mathie
An infrared windshield reflects the infrared light waves and so reduces heat build-up from direct sunlight inside the car. This has advantages in terms of cutting down on the need for air conditioning and thus using less gas.
Heat in sunlight is caused by far infrared waves. In reflecting these waves, an infrared windshield screens out the heat in sunlight whilst allowing the visible spectrum through, so you can still see through it.
As the driving cabin is not heated by direct sunlight (some estimates put the temperature difference compared to conventional windshields at as much as 10 degrees Fahrenheit), the air-conditioning system will not be used so often and so will consume less fuel. PPG industries estimates that their infrared windshields make cars 2 to 4 percent more fuel efficient.
Although infrared windshields cost more than regular ones, the fuel efficiency benefit means that they will pay for themselves over time. Using the PPG industries' estimate of savings of around $66 a year, a $250 Infrared windshield will pay for itself in a little over four years.
Carl Mathie began working as a translator, editor and writer in 2004 at two independent literary publishers in London. His work has been published in the "Financial Times" and online at Readysteadybook and Vulpes Libris. He has translated for several important international publishers including Grupo Planeta and Oxygen Books. He has a Bachelor of Arts in comparative American studies from the University of Warwick.