‘I’m a car expert and the black dots on your car windscreen are so important’

Petrol and diesel drivers have been warned of the importance of small black dots on their car windscreen with the feature having a series of vital jobs to protect vehicles.

These black dots are called a “frit” and are usually located on the outer ridges of the front windscreen.

They are usually located next to a black enamel bar which runs around the outside of the screen and is featured on almost every vehicle in the UK.

However, specialists have warned the black spots actually play a series of vital roles from regulating vehicle temperature to holding the glass in place.

Windscreen experts at Autoglaze said the black dots were “intriguing” but were so “underrated” by road users.

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They explained: “The black dots, or dot matrix, actually help distribute temperature evenly to lessen optical distortion or lensing.

“This happens when the frit band (the solid black one) heats up much faster than the windscreen’s glass, creating an optical distortion that makes either straight lines look curved or bowed inwards toward the centre.

“Those ‘gradually sinking’ black dots help lessen this phenomenon by dissipating the heat and spreading it out evenly.”

Meanwhile, Max Auto Glass added that the black enamel and dots were also vital for keeping the windscreen stuck down.

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Vehicle manufacturers used to use gaskets to create a seal around the windshield and prevent water from entering the car.

A chrome trim would then be fastened into place to hold the windshield into place. However, this method was ditched around 60 to 70 years ago in exchange for the current enamel.

They added: “It was in the 1950s and ‘60s that vehicle manufacturers shifted from using metal trim to using adhesives to hold the glass in place.

“When this happened, it was necessary to have a way to ensure good adhesion and protect the glue. This was when the black frit band became standard on essentially all vehicle windshields.

“The inside-facing side of the black frit band also serves an important purpose. It provides a rougher surface for the adhesive sealant to stick to since this part of the windshield is the contact point between the glass and the vehicle’s frame.

“This helps ensure that the adhesive can form a strong bond all the way around the windshield to properly hold it in place.”

Both experts also revealed the frit also has aesthetic purposes to create a “visual barrier”.

They said the black enamel and dots prevent drivers from seeing the adhesive along the frame of the windshield which creates a “polished” appearance.

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