“Yikes, that sun has a bite!” we will say every day for what feels like an eternity. Another stinking hot summer is upon us in the beautiful southern sphere; but soaking up harmful UV rays through the car windows…brings us no cheer.
We’re all aware of the need to slip slop slap while enjoying the great outdoors; but did you know you could also be in harm’s way while driving?
Types of UV radiation in the car: UVA vs UVB
According to wikicancer.org.au, UV radiation is segmented into three wavelengths: UVC, UVA and UVB.
Solar UVC doesn’t bother us as it is absorbed by our atmosphere before reaching the Earth’s surface; but we need to look out for both UVA and UVB Both beaming nasties have the potential to cause eye and skin damage, and have been linked with skin cancer.
So how much UV is getting to us through our windscreen and car windows?
While most types of auto glass block the majority of UVB rays, the degree of protection from UVA depends on the type of glass, and other factors such as the position of the vehicle in relation to the sun.
Laminated front and rear windscreens provide UVB and UVA protection; but the side and back windows, which are constructed of tempered glass, can allow in more than 60% of UVA rays.
UVA is known to penetrate deep into the dermis – the skin’s thickest layer. Exposure can play a major role in skin aging and wrinkling.
UVB actually burns the surface layers of the skin and is a known trigger for skin cancer development.
The vast majority of us (particularly in Australia) are exposed to volumes of UVA throughout our lifetime. UVA’s account for as much as 95% of all UVA’s radiation reaching the Earth’s surface. While less intense than those baking UVB’s, UVA’s are significantly more prevalent with a consistent intensity during all daylight hours. UVA’s can penetrate clouds and glass to reach our skin.
Research has revealed that UV skin damage is more extensive on the side of the body closest to the car window. People who spend extensive time in their vehicles have rougher, more wrinkled skin on their window side. This is something to think about when we strap our kids in the back by the windows that aren’t offering adequate UVA protection. What damage could it be doing to their soft, sensitive skin?
How can you protect yourself and your family?
You should get into the habit of following sun safety protocols whenever you enter the vehicle (along with the long list of other things to remember, like reusable shopping bags).
-> Cover exposed skin on your arms, legs and face on the window side
-> Apply an SPF 15 or higher broad spectrum UVA/UVB sunscreen, ensuring you don’t miss your neck, hands and ears
-> In convertibles and cars with sunroofs you should be extra cautious and wear wraparound UV-blocking sunglasses and a wide-brimmed hat
-> Keep your windows up. UV exposure is much higher through an open window
If wearing extra layers, a weird disguise and sticky sunscreen on your way to work this scorching summer doesn’t appeal to you, the best form of affordable protection is car window tinting with a UVA filtering window film.
Car window tinting to protect against UV rays
The most surefire way to protect yourself and your family from the very real risk of UV exposure in your vehicle is through quality protective window film installed by a trusted professional. Installing protective film on your windows will keep you virtually UV-free on the road.
At Novus we’ve protected tens of thousands of families across Australia with superior attention to detail in applying our top grade window film. Guaranteed to not to bubble or peel, it’s a fuss free installation. We’ll even come to you while you’re at home or work!
In addition to protecting your skin and eyes, a window tint can help preserve your interior and upholstery, reduce energy demands, keep the interior of your car cooler and deter thieves… all while looking great too.
This extra layer of protection can also strengthen your car window or windscreens’ resolve in the event of an accident or storm damage. It will also enhance the aesthetic appeal and overall value of your vehicle, with the peace of mind that your skin is safe with us.
If you think you may have experienced damage to your skin from the relentless Aussie sun, it’s important to have regular checkups and screening. You should always endeavour to up the ante on your sun-protection methods.
Let’s enjoy the beautiful sun this summer… but from a safe distance.
Novus Auto Glass specialise in windscreen repair technology and strive to provide you with the best possible care for your car. Products and services include windscreen repair and replacement as well as restoration, polishing and windscreen glass cleaning, tinting and protection products. Novus Auto Glass offer top quality window tinting to protect you and your family from UV rays this summer. Call us to see how we can help you on 13 22 34.