Every type of UTV windshield has its pros and cons, including windshields made out of glass. One concern you might have about choosing glass is whether or not it will crack and break. The short answer is no, probably not (unless you intentionally throw a boulder at your RZR glass windshield, or something, I dunno). Truth is, every windshield will get damaged in one way or another with enough use; safety glass can just stand up better over a longer period of time, while looking new, with proper care.
Glass Is a Naturally Scratch-Resistant Material
Getting scratches on your new windshield is not only annoying, it can get in the way of your field-of-view while driving along trails, over dunes, and through rocky areas. Luckily, glass is a naturally hard material, which means it’s scratch-resistant without the need for extra protective coatings. That means, everything else being equal, glass windshields will have fewer, shallower scratches over the course of several years when compared with untreated windshield materials.
Difference Between Half and Full Windshields
You can choose between a few different types of UTV windshields for your side-by-side. What you pick will be based on your riding style, seasonal riding times, and personal preferences.
Half windshields are great for forcing most dirt and debris over the cab while still allowing for a lot of air flow. They’re also usually easy to install and remove for when you don’t need them.
Full windshields are the best choice for keeping a clean cab, free from most dirt and debris. They’re also a good choice for cold-weather riding. However, be prepared for no air flow.
UTV Glass Windshields Are Built to Be Strong
When talking about glass windshields, it’s important to remember that modern automotive glass is engineered to be stronger than ever before. For the most part, UTV glass windshields should be laminated or tempered, resulting in a much stronger, safer type of glass for your SxS. This means that it is less prone to cracking and breaking, even when driving through rough terrain.
Choosing Front, Rear, Both, or Full UTV Enclosures
Besides the front windshield coming in half or full options, there are other windshield choices to make, too. Rear windshields can help keep dirt and debris out of the cab, which can be kicked up by the rear tires, especially in muddy or rocky terrain. Unlike front windshields, rear windshields usually come in one size meant to cover the main rear opening. For riders who like going out in all weather and in all seasons, a full enclosure, including door covers and a roof, might be best.
Glass Can Last a Long Time While Looking New
One thing you’ll notice about glass windshields is that they typically cost more than windshields made from other materials. The thing is, they’ll also probably last longer while maintaining a clean and clear look in a few years with minimal maintenance. You won’t need to worry about any protective coatings wearing off or whether or not your windshield can handle a rough trail.
Polycarbonate Compared to Glass
Polycarbonate windshields can be just as scratch-resistant as glass with the right protective coating, which makes them a solid choice when compared to glass, as long as you keep up with the maintenance. Even without treatments, they can last for years, however, polycarbonate is more prone to scratches. If you’re regularly riding through rocky terrain, you might be replacing your windshield relatively quickly or getting additional protective coatings.
What’s the Best UTV Windshield for Your Side-by-Side?
While there are a lot of reasons to consider getting a glass windshield for your UTV, at the end of the day, the most important thing is that you like the look, feel, features, and price of your new windshield. At R1 Industries, we can help you find the perfect windshield for your side-by-side, from full-glass to half-polycarbonate options. Start browsing for your ideal windshield.