Everything You Need to Know about Windscreen Rain Sensors
In modern cars, various components and systems come together to create a perfect experience. From essential components like brakes and engine to safety features like child-locks and cruise control, everything contributes to the experience. The rain sensor windshield is one such innovation to improve the driving experience in rainy weather. Although the rain sensor windshield dates back to the 1950’s, it has become more common in latest vehicle models.
Different types of automotive glasses protect you from dust, rain, and UV rays. Moreover, this rain sensor on car windshields helps the driver with proper visibility during rain by automatically switching on the wipers. Here’s a guide on how a windshield rain sensor works, its installation and benefits.
WHAT IS A WINDSHIELD RAIN SENSOR?
The windshield rain sensor works on a simple phenomenon. When the rain droplets fall on the windscreen, the sensor detects the water presence and switches on the wipers automatically. The sensor mounts on the rear-view mirror in the car cabin and makes contact with the windscreen.
WORKING OF RAIN SENSOR IN THE WINDSHIELD
The rain sensor basically detects the light rays. When the rain drops fall on the windshield, the sensor detects the shattering of the infrared light rays in different angles. In this way, the rain sensor sends the signal to the car computer which automatically operates the car windshield wiper blades.
HOW TO USE WINDSHIELD RAIN SENSOR?
The windshield rain sensor functions fine, that is if it rains, the wipers automatically start functioning. In some circumstances when the wiper knob, button or stalk is not switched to auto mode, you will have to operate it manually.
You can simply switch on the auto mode and drive comfortably in the rain. In auto mode, you can change the sensitivity or speed of the wipers according to your requirement. For instance, in light rain, you can keep the sensitivity low.
In other conditions, if the wipers are not working, you can replace them with new ones to drive safely in rainy, foggy or misty weather. The windshield rain sensor may also malfunction or not work. Therefore, it’s better to get it replaced by an auto service technician.
PROS AND CONS OF WINDSHIELD RAIN SENSOR
The windshield rain sensor has its advantages and disadvantages just like any other sensor or component.
- It allows you a comfortable and safe drive in rainy weather.
- Rain sensors are easy to replace because of their low price.
- The sensor extends the wipers’ life by automatically using it only when needed.
- The rain sensor can malfunction or stop working if it comes in direct contact with water.
- It takes some time to respond as it detects the dispersion of light in different angles.
REPLACING OR INSTALLING NEW WINDSCREENS
When the car owners replace or maintain the windshields, most of them don’t know about this rain sensor as they use the manual knob to turn on the wipers. The windscreens without rain sensors cost less than the rain sensor windshields installation but it removes one of the safety features. Therefore, always ensure this feature in your car through the owner’s manual and replace the windshield accordingly.
Apart from windshield rain sensors, there are other sensors that add to the safety of the passengers in the vehicle, for instance, lane departure sensor, blind spot monitoring system and heads-up displays. The automotive industry continuously improves the safety of drivers and passengers in a car with all the active safety systems.
You can find windshield rain sensors in most of the car models of different auto brands. When you buy a used car in the UAE, make sure you assess all the safety features and sensors for a safer driving experience.
Stay tuned to the UAE’s top auto blog for more information on different car parts and their functions.