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Windshield Distortion???

13433 Views 6 Replies 5 Participants Last post by  andrew28
My Insight has a bit of windshield distortion if you look closely on the front windshield, passenger side, extreme lower corner area. After reading a consumer review today of a 2019 Toyota Yaris and the fact that this consumer also found windshield distortion, I am now wondering if any of you have seen this on your respective car?

Excerpt from the Edmunds consumer review of Toyota Yaris: "According to Toyota, using their words, ALL 2019 windshields will have distortion on the bottom few inches, and it is normal, even if it may distract the driver!" Here's the long version: when you test drive the 2019 Yaris, check the lower section, especially toward the corner of the windshield.

I most often notice this on the highway, as I am passing structures on the side of the road. It kind of has the look - for those who know what I mean - of a subpar camera's extreme "barrel distortion" when shooting at wide-angle.
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Found a Honda FAQ webpage that seems to address this common windshield distortion issue. Was not aware of this before I posted my question above:

When I look through the side of the windshield on my car, it's all wavy and distorted. Is this normal?

This distortion is called "cross-car distortion." You will notice it when you're watching a vehicle cross in front of your car and also when you're turning left and looking through the right side of the windshield at other vehicles. Front-seat passengers see the same distortion when they look through the left side of the windshield. Since cross-car distortion occurs when you look through the glass at an angle, it may be even more noticeable for short drivers. Wearing nonprescription sunglasses, which tend to reduce depth perception, also may increase the perceived distortion.

Some cross-car distortion exists in the windshields of Honda vehicles manufactured since 1994. In fact, all of these recent Honda windshields have this distortion to some degree, and the condition should be considered normal. Because the aerodynamic windshield of recent Hondas is at more of an angle than in the past, the cross-car distortion may be slightly more noticeable, even though the jump distortion is at the same low level as before. These windshields meet all applicable Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standards for glazing materials, and this minor distortion is allowable within the industry specifications for automotive glass.
I worked in glass industry for 40 years, about half of those in auto glass manufacturing, and I can attest to the angle of the windshield making the distortion more apparent. That said, it is quite possible for windshields that are outside the FMVSS standards to make it through the quality assurance process. So if you feel your windshield is causing problems, especially in the normal drivers viewing area, you should have it looked at by an auto glass installer.
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