You don’t expect a window or a glass door in your house to break, but accidents do happen. If flying debris from a tornado or a stray baseball from neighbor kids playing hits your window, you will be grateful if it’s made of tempered glass.
Getting tempered glass can make your windows 4-5 times stronger. It’s a great glass alternative to secure your house and keep it from damages or potential home invasions. Want to find out more about this glass and how you can add it to your home? Read on.
What is Tempered Glass?
Tempered glass is usually treated by heat or chemicals for toughening and improving strength. It involves a heating process that reaches about 1100 degrees F and then quickly quenching in cold air. The fast cooling process strengthens the outer layer of the glass to help it withstand impacts without breaking. In the case of breaking, the glass shatters into tiny pieces, reducing the chance of serious injuries caused by flying shards of glass.
Tempered glass is often called safety glass because it can be four to five times stronger than ordinary annealed glass with the same dimensions.
Benefits of Tempered Glass
Tempered glass is a preferred glass material because of these benefits:
1. Enhanced safety
Ordinary glass commonly found in windows can shatter into shards that can cause injury. These shards are a huge safety risk, especially when it comes to young children at home. On the other hand, tempered glass windows break into blunt circular pieces that reduce the risk of injuries. If tempered glass breaks, it can easily be cleaned with a broom without fear of injuries.
2. High durability
Tempered glass can take a lot of abuse. Baseballs and golf balls can bounce off it while it shatters on an ordinary annealed glass.
3. High resistance
If you live in areas prone to volatile weather conditions like tornadoes, thunderstorms, strong winds, torrid rainfall, dust storms, and more – opting for tempered glass windows is a smart choice. This material has a lot of resistive qualities that are less likely to shatter under the influence of strong winds. It can also withstand extreme cold or heat. Plus, it can be quite resistant to everyday wear-and-tear and scratches, making it a great choice for your home windows and surfaces.
4. Increased security
Windows are one of the most common entry points to houses by thieves and burglars. An ordinary glass window can be easy to break, but tempered glass is much stronger and difficult to break in because it is designed to withstand impact. Its strength and high durability can offer your home increased security.
One of the effects of the curing process that tempered glasses undergo is that it becomes more heat-resistant. It’s twice as stable as a regular glass when it comes to handling the heat. This means tempered glass can withstand higher temperatures than regular annealed glass without cracking.
6. Easy to cleanup
In the event that tempered glass breaks, it’s safer and easier to clean up since it breaks into smaller pieces instead of big, jagged ones. You can sweep it up without any risk of getting a cut.
Uses of Tempered Glass
You can find safety glass around you. It’s used in high-rise building windows, car windows, skylights, phone screens, and more. Because of its durability, it’s now used in different applications in the home. Building codes require glass fixtures to be constructed with tempered glass in some areas. Here are the different uses of tempered glass around the home.
The strengths of tempered glass mentioned above are the reasons why it’s a great material to use for windows. According to residential building cores, windows must use tempered glass if they have an area of more than 9 feet square, the top edge is more than 36 inches above the floor, and the bottom ledge is less than 18 inches above the floor.
Glass doors that are fixed, sliding, bi-fold and any other operable door must be made from tempered glass, no matter its size. It helps the glass door be burglar-resistant, making it ideal for your homes.
3. Kitchen backsplash
Glass is naturally water and stain-resistant, making it an ideal stylish material for a kitchen backsplash. It can also handle heat well, should you put an appliance in the kitchen countertop that lets off steam.
There are risks of falls and slips in wet areas, so glasses must be made of tempered glass to avoid injury. Also, hot steam showers may damage other types of glass if it’s not made of tempered glass.
Custom-cut tempered glass is usually used for tabletops. For instance, you can have a glass panel cut for protecting the surface of a wood table. But if you prefer a modern table, you can pick a minimalist pedestal and put a heavy-grade piece of glass as the tabletop. Contractors can cut the glass into any shape you like so you can easily have a unique, gorgeous glass table.
The same application used in a custom-cut glass is also used for shelving. You can use tempered glass panels instead of wood in bookcases or built-in wall shelves. The glass can be attached to the wall using discreet hardware, so it looks like it’s floating on the wall. For instance, the shelves across one wall can be connected with vertical glass panels. If you want to DIY your shelving, learn how to cut tempered glass shelves.
Glass stair rails made from glass must be made of tempered glass so it can be reliable. The same goes for structural panels and glazing on surfaces adjacent to ramps, stairs, and landings.
8. Room dividers
Heavy-duty glass in the bathroom is used as a divider, and tempered glass is the best type of glass to use. It can also be used as a great divider between a home office and the rest of the family room. As with room dividers, you have an option to choose from transparent or opaque glass – but opaque glass is more common. The opacity of the glass can come from frosting and etching, or you can opt for textured glass.
9. Deck railing or walls
For your deck, balconies, and walls, tempered glass can offer a windbreak without impeding the view. It gives your home a contemporary feel.
Furniture with tempered glass used for their glass parts is a better choice than those equipped with their non-toughened counterparts. It’s usually found in glass tabletops and cabinets with glass panels.