Glass is a beautiful, sleek material that features in many places in the home—one popular destination is within doors. To ensure safety, building codes specify which varieties can be used. Two common types are toughened and laminated glass.
Toughened glass is about five times stronger than ordinary glass. When it breaks, it crumbles into many small, rounded chunks that are less likely to cause injury than sharp, pointy shards. These qualities make toughened glass safer to use within doors that need to withstand constant use and sometimes rough treatment, such as slamming.
The extra strength within the glass results from a process where an ordinary pane undergoes an extreme heating treatment, of up to 600 degrees. Then, chilled compressed air quickly cools the glazing. This tempering process causes the outer part of the glass to contract, forming an especially hard layer.
Another safety glass used within doors is laminated glass. This glazing consists of two glass panes on either side of a plastic interlayer. Through heat and pressure, the three bond together to form one panel. When this glass breaks, the resin layer typically holds the cracked pieces within the frame, though it may display a spiderweb pattern of cracks. Without loose glass pieces, injuries are unlikely, and the door retains a barrier until help arrives.
How They're Different
The design and structure of both types of glazing make them safe to use around the home, despite their distinct qualities. Toughened glass is typically stronger than laminated glass and less likely to smash. However, while toughened glass crumbles into numerous small, rounded pieces, laminated glass usually holds together within its frame. They undergo different processing. An extreme heating and cooling procedure creates the robustness of toughened glass, whereas laminated glass consists of bonded layers of glass and resin.
Glazing Installation And Safety Standards
Regular-sized windows often feature ordinary float glass. But large expansive windows and glass doors typically use laminated or toughened glass. The kind they use depends on the particular installation. Stringent building codes govern the use of glass within homes and rate both toughened and laminated varieties as grade-A safety glass.
So when installing beautiful glass doors within your home, you can rest assured that they will not only create an appealing open aesthetic, but they will also provide a secure environment. For added privacy, you could decorate the glass with frosting or tinting.