What Is The Difference Between Sunroof And Moonroof?

You should know about the difference between sunroof and moonroof if you are planning to buy a new vehicle with a rooftop. What are the features of the sunroof and moonroof? Why they are different from each other all you will know about it in this topic. I will explain every important point that is related to the moon roof and sunroof. You will like to know what must be seen in the sun and moon rooftops. So let us see what is the general difference between sunroof and moonroof first.

What’s Difference Between Sunroof And Moonroof?

You may think that there is no difference between sunroof and moonroof as they have the same functions to get the view of the above side. However, it is not like that. Before going into details of each roof you should know a major difference first.

The big and major difference between them is that the sunroof is made up of metal, glass, or opaque material that needs to be removed to allow sunlight to pass in the car. While the moonroof is made up of tinted glass from which light can be passed easily into a car without opening it.

Below I have described what’s the difference between a sunroof and a moonroof of vehicles. Let us discuss and understand it properly.

What Is A Sunroof?

The sunroof is a part of the car that is made up of glass or metal or opaque sturdy material located on the roof or top of the car. It can be opened or tilted from the rooftop of the car to enjoy the fresh air as well as sunlight. You will be able to stand inside your car and be able to view the roads as well as outer space. Nowadays, you will be able to see sunroofs in classic cars only very few new cars have sunroofs.

What Is A Moonroof?

The moonroof is similar to the sunroof but is made up of the tinted glass situated on the roof of the cars. With the help of the moonroof, you can view the top or sky side easily through the glass. This can be opened or hide in the rooftop and headliner easily. It works like a power window that is located on the top side of the car. 

You may have understood a basic difference between moonroof and sunroof after reading the above information. But there is more difference between sunroof and moonroof in cars let us read about it deeper in further.

Here below I have mentioned the features between moonroof vs sunroof BMW and other cars in detail. So let’s read them carefully.

The Purpose

Here below are the purpose of both sunroof and moonroof

  • Sunroof

The sunroof is built on the top of the car for allowing to pass the fresh air. The light can be blocked if the sunroof is kept closed. However, it helps us to view the sky when opened completely. 

  • Moonroof

The moonroof is the transparent roof built on the top. They were introduced in the car for viewing the sky without opening the roof. Most of its use was to see the sky at night time and find that beautiful view of the moon.

Opening Mechanism

For the mechanism difference read below

  • Sunroof

There are different types of sunroofs and they depend upon their opening mechanics. Most of the sunroofs are pop-up roofs, built-in roofs, spoiler roofs, lamella, and a panoramic sunroof.

  • Moonroof

The moonroof types are also similar to the roofs like the sunroof. However, there is a moonroof car with a power moonroof installation which is just like a power window located on the roof. This electric roof feature makes the opening and closing simple.

Materials Used

The material used in both are different have a look at the difference

  • Sunroof

Mostly sunroofs are made up of opaque metal panels. It comes in the same color as the body of the car. However, in some of the cars sunroofs are made of glass which may have different shades. 

  • Moonroof

The cars are having moonroofs but they are made up of tinted glass panels. For blocking the sunlight the moonroofs also come with a sunshade.

Moonroof Vs Sunroof Vs Panoramic Roofs

Let us see the basic difference between the different car roofs in the following:

  1. Sunroof

The sunroof is an opaque metal panel. Which can be opened to pass the air and light inside the car. It is compact as compared to the panoramic roof.

  1. Moonroof

A moonroof is similar to a sunroof, since they are made up of tinted glass they are helping to view the sky. They also help to allow air to pass inside after opening.

  1. Panoramic Roof

The panoramic roof is constructed in a bigger size. It creates a panoramic view for the persons sitting inside the car. The panoramic roof can be a panoramic sunroof as well as a panoramic moonroof. Two types of panoramic roofs are fixed and operable. The fixed roof comes with one single panel and can not be opened. Whereas an operable roof comes with multiple panels and can be opened.

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How Important Is Sunroof?

For some car owner sunroof in a car is a luxury and necessary feature that they feel add on to its Ambience. Having sunroof in a car makes it feel high toned and travelling under natural warm sunlight that feels so relived during winters.

Do Sunroofs Cause Problems?

Probably the most common problem, sunroof leakage can be a disaster to deal with. It could be because of a clog on the drain of the sunroof or wear and tear of rubber seals. Both cases are not that costly to get fixed but they can cause some serious damage to the interior of your car if water seeps into critical spots.

Does Sunroof Increase Car Value?

Although car loses their value over time, you can alleviate this by taking good care of your car. If you plan to sale your car in a few years, then it is best interest to keep in a good condition. Adding an aftermarket sunroof to the car can increase the value of the car and allowing the sun rays to stream in.

Why Is It Called A Moonroof Instead Of A Sunroof?

Sunroof means no light or air when the roof is closed (think of a sunshade); moonroof is a glass sunroof you can look through. But today almost nobody sells cars with an opaque movable “sunroof,” so the words are used interchangeably.

Does A Moonroof Open All The Way?

Modern Moonroofs

Your moonroof can slide all the way open or partially open, tilt up or down, retract just the glass, or fully retract so you get the full experience of the sun and wind.

What Is The Benefit Of A Moonroof?

The Benefits of a Moonroof

While a moonroof cannot be removed, it does allow for a nice, subtle breeze to flow in and out of your vehicle. This creates a cross breeze that doesn’t mess up hair or scatter papers. It is just enough of a breeze to assist with the windows half down, or the AC on. 

Do Moonroofs Break Easily?

Large sunroofs are also susceptible to breakage because the glass flexes when the vehicle drives over uneven pavement. The seal between the glass and frame may delaminate and let go, or the sunroof’s clips or mechanisms may hit and shatter the glass.

Is Sunroof Moonroof Safe?

That said, government crash-test results have shown that the effect of a sunroof is insignificant to the overall strength of the roof. The structure of a car consists of a strong steel frame wrapped by relatively thin metal panels. That steel frame is what is helping to keep you safe.

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Here we discussed the difference between sunroof and moonroof in detail. I told you various important points related to the roofs built on the cars. You must have understood about what are the features and functions of sunroof vs moonroof. I explained about the materials, purposes, etc that are available in the rooftops. While buying your future car you will be able to make difference between sunroof and moonroof.


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