Safety glass is used wherever normal glass would shatter or broken glass could be dangerous. While safety glass is mostly installed to comply with building regulations, it can also be a versatile asset during home renovations.
Tempered and laminated glasses are significantly stronger than standard panes, meaning that they can stand up to stresses that normal glass cannot. The following are six ways you can put that strength to work in your home.
1. Replacing Old Railings
Older deck and balcony railings are often made with heavy wood planks or siding. Even with a regular schedule of staining and vulnerable, wooden railings are vulnerable to rot and deterioration over time. If you are tired of repairing your balcony or deck to keep it looking presentable, consider making the switch to safety glass.
2. Renovating Bathrooms
Glass showers are always trendy, but most building codes do not allow the use of standard glass in bathroom fixtures. If a person should slip and fall, shattered glass becomes a potentially lethal hazard. Safety glass, typically tempered, should always be used when installing a new shower frame.
3. Installing Glass Countertops
Glass countertops are a stylish and relatively new addition to the world of kitchen decor. They have seen increased attention in recent years for their hygienic value and wide variety of patterns and colors. But are they strong enough to stand up to real usage?
Your first concern with the idea of glass countertops is probably their weakness to scrapes and cracks. The kitchen can be a messy, unpredictable place, and counters need to be able to take a beating. Tempered glass is ideal for this since it is heat resistant as well as durable. Laminates can also be used instead for more complex designs.
4. Preventing Furniture Breakage
Similarly, glass-topped furniture is an easy way to add a touch of elegance to a room. But what happens when a child or guest drops a mug on your end table? If the table is made from tempered glass, the mug will break first, sparing you the expense of replacing the tabletop. Laminated glass is usually not quite as strong as tempered, but if it does break, it will not shatter.
5. Reducing Noise Pollution
Bustling neighborhoods are a sign of healthy communities, but you may not want to be reminded of it at every hour of the day. If you find your sleep and recreation are constantly being disturbed by noise from the outside world, you should look to your windows. Standard glass provides some sound protection, but your best bet for sound deadening is laminated panes. The extra layer of laminate between glass panes is a highly effective sound barrier.
6. Securing Your Ground Level
It only takes one break-in attempt to get many homeowners thinking about security. Your windows are some of the most vulnerable parts of your home, and thieves know it. Standard glass stands no chance against a crowbar, brick, or simple rock. The sidelites, or windows right next to your doors, are especially prone to being broken.
You can deter intruders by installing expensive security systems, but physical shields can be just as effective. By strengthening windows on your ground story, you may send a message to thieves that your home isn't worth the time and effort of getting in. You might choose to replace all of your lower windows or just the sidelites to halt home invaders.
Whatever your goals during a renovation project, glass often offers the best combination of beauty, durability, and price. To learn more about the regulations and possibilities surrounding residential safety class, contact our experts at Economy Glass Inc. Our dedicated professionals are waiting to help you turn your vision into real renovations.