Jeff Plungis, a Consumer Reports writer, found nearly 900 complaints of vehicles with exploding sunroofs—involving 35 automakers and over 200 models.
People who have experienced exploding sunroofs while driving, describe the sound as a gunshot.
Kara Ardron was driving on a South Carolina highway, when the sunroof of her Volkswagen exploded.
“It sounded like a gunshot. It was really, really loud. My sunroof was in thousands of pieces,” Ardron said.
Another driver, Katie Vasiloff, of Washington, D.C. said the sunroof of her Nissan also exploded and spoke of the dangers that explosion could have posed.
“God forbid it went in my eyes. I could have swerved into another car, I mean, really the possibility of how bad this could have been are endless,"Vasiloff explained.
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Plungis is pushing to focus on the dangers of shattering sunroofs.
“We feel like these are scary incidents. They're inherently dangerous and the automakers need to step up and be more accountable,” Plungis stated.
Auto Glass Consultant, Russ Corsi, believes that cheap materials and large sunroof are the cause of the explosions.
"If it isn't bent properly, shaped properly…changes in temperature, thermal changes, hot or cold, cause that glass to try to flex and that could cause it to break,"Corsi said.
Corsi examined a sunroof of a car for the Action News Jax Investigation and found it had a scratch about eight inches long.
He said the scratch was potentially dangerous and any “sudden thermal shock or twist in the body” could cause a sunroof to shatter.
Exploding sunroofs have sparked multiple lawsuits, recalls, federal safety investigations— and U.S. Senate inquiries.
If there are noticeable chips or cracks in the glass, have the sunroof examined to prevent an explosion. Another helpful tip — choose laminated glass over tempered glass. Laminated glass is stronger.
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