Hi guys : Is there any easy way (besides breaking it) to find out if my car has safety or tempered glass or the old plate glass?? I didn't restore the car, and the glass looks fine but now has me somewhat concerned. Thanks : Bruce
Yes. Hold a small light or lit candle near the glass, if you see two reflections, it is laminated or safety glass. If you only see one reflection, it is plate glass.
Another way is to look at the edge of the glass itself, laminated or safety glass will have two panes of glass with a thin layer of plastic in the middle.
Regarding tempered glass, I don't know of a way to visually tell unless it has a manufacturer's marking on it somewhere.
Look at edge, safety is like a sandwich
I think the question is how to tell tempered glass from non-tempered glass.
There will be two (or more) dimples along one edge of tempered glass. This is where they clamp it to put it into the kiln for tempering.
In your car, they put the dimples down near the bottom frame so they are less or not visible.
2 dimples = Tempered
2 reflections = Safety/Laminated
Not an 'answer', per se, but just came across this about repairing scratches in glass...
Take Care; Behave; "Don't Shoot!" (and)
There is a unique sound to tempered, plate and safety glass. A glass person that cut the safety glass in our '24 tudor showed me in the shop what each sounds like so I can't replicate it in writing. He was surprised that the top front window had tempered glass while the lower had plate glass. I have safety glass all the way around now.
Another easier method to determine Tempered glass is to look at / thru it on a sunny day, wearing good quality "polarised" sunglasses. If it is tempered, you should see a streaky or mottled pattern in the glass. Also rotating the glass (or your head) as you look thru it, the pattern will alter (intensify & diminish) but they have to be "Polaroid" glasses.
Ivan has it right, easy to tell. Dave in Bellingham,WA
Do not rely on the flame method. I have seen three flames doing this.
Three reflected flames can result from the two sides plus middle layer.
Ivan describes the easiest way to determine if the glass is tempered. One can often see this effect looking through the back window of your car, at an angle, wearing polarized sunglasses. The look-for-the-dimple method is good too.
As Richard says, there is a distinctive sound to laminated glass -- take a quarter, hold it loosely and rap it against the glass... laminated glass will sound dull, solid plate or tempered will sound sharp.
Try it on your modern car first so you know the different sounds. The front windshield will be laminated, the side windows are tempered plate.
If you are concerned about whether you windshield is tempered or not, just tap it with one of those pointed tools that are made to break them. If it shatters, you didn't want it on there anyway. JMHO Dave
Not all tempered glass will have the dimples. Some tempering ovens don't use that method. The trick with polarized glasses is probably best. That pattern comes from the way the glass is cooled in the tempering process.