A sunroof is a great feature for your car, though there are some issues you will have to watch for such as leaks, malfunctioning buttons or shattered glass. No one wants to have to deal with a shattered sunroof, but, if it does happen to you, Glass.com has some steps to take until you schedule its replacement.
Before we get to those glass breakage problems, let’s talk about some of the other things that could happen with your sunroof. The most common problem is water leakage. Open your sunroof and look for the drain holes in both front corners. Often times this is caused by a clogged drain tube and this can be solved easily by using a shop vacuum to remove debris. If that doesn’t work it may be time to contact an auto glass shop (Check out Glass.com for someone to help with the repair.) You definitely don’t want a leak to get out of control as this can create more problems including stains, mildew and rust.
Another issue that may occur with your sunroof is that it won’t open. This could be caused by a problem with the wiring or with the motor, and sometimes this can be caused by debris as well. It is important to clean the sunroof tracks regularly as dirt and debris can cause the sunroof to become stuck. Auto glass shops can help fix these issues as well.
The bigger problems with a sunroof is one whose glass shatters spontaneously with no warning. Whenever one of these situations occur it always seems to make the news, perhaps making it seem more common than it is when you consider the millions of cars equipped with a sunroof. Then Consumer Reports (CR) published a research report this year giving these cases even more visibility.
The magazine analyzed complaints listed in the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s (NHTSA) database. There have been at least 208 car models and 35 automotive brands listed in complaints to the federal government about exploding sunroofs since 1995. Hyundai, Ford and Nissan were the top three automakers against whom consumers filed complaints. The Scion tC, Hyundai Veloster and Kia Sorento were the top three models.
Of all the models mentioned in complaints, only the Kia Sorento is under investigation by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. Kia has received at least 156 complaints about the Sorento sunroof.
Although complaints about shattering sunroofs may be rising, we don’t know exactly why sunroofs explode. Some blame a switch to different types of glass. Others blame it on physics, change in temperature or any other number of factors. (You can read about those here.)
Those are the unexplainable occurrences. Other causes could include accidental breakages caused by rocks, tree branches or other debris. Or even sports accidents like a ball hitting the sunroof, can be the cause.
The size of a sunroof also plays a role. As panoramic sunroofs (sometimes referred to as moonroofs) grow in popularity, these larger glass sizes can have a higher risk of breakage. These larger sliding panels and allow front and rear passengers to enjoy the fresh air and view of the sky.
Other sunroof options on the market include:
None of that really matters however when you have a car that is not drivable. So if your car sunroof has shattered first follow these steps.
Keep in mind that cases of exploding sunroofs are rare, so don’t let that deter you from splurging on that option when purchasing your next vehicle. But if you do find yourself facing any issues with your sunroof, know that Glass.com is here to help. Simply use our locator tool to find a local, reputable glass shop.Get a Free Estimate