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What is Safety Glass?

Did you know that safety glass is up to 10 times stronger than standard glass? It’s purpose is to provide maximum security and prevent injuries.

Most Common Safety Glass Applications

  • Safety goggles

Safety glass makes up protective goggles. They protect your eyes from dirt, debris, metal shards, and paint chips during construction work. Chemical laboratories, assembly plants, and auto repair are places where you are most likely to see safety goggles.

  • Windows

Safety glass is the material of choice for modern windows in homes, office buildings, and even commercial aircraft.

  • Doors

Glass doors must be resilient, so builders use safety glass for shower doors, patio doors, and glass entrances. Unlike standard glass, these doors are not bulky, easy to open with ease, and convenient to clean.

  • Stairs

Glass stairs are becoming increasingly popular in modern buildings. Safety glass stairs are not only extremely durable but also add a cool, airy look to any space.

Safety glass generally comes in one of two forms: tempered or laminated. Both are strong but are built for different purposes.

What is Tempered Glass?

Tempered glass, also called toughened glass, is a heat-treated material that is very strong. When it breaks, it shatters into non-hazardous small pieces instead of jagged shrapnel.

Tempered glass is made by heating glass to near melting point – between 1100 and 1300 degrees Fahrenheit. Once heated, it is cooled quickly in powerful drafts of cold air. While the glass cools down, stress is exerted. It then hardens under this stress. The hardening process starts at the surface, preserving the overall dimensions. When the center starts to cool, the surface and edges then compress to form a toughened glass piece.

It is 5 to 10 times stronger than untreated glass. Tempered glass is also several times stronger than laminated glass. It is likewise known to bend easier without breaking. It is also wind-resistant, making it ideal for installing windows in skyscrapers.

Tempered glass is ideal for applications that require heat resistance and durability. The most common home appliance that is assembled with tempered glass is the microwave oven. Since tempered glass is capable of sustaining high heat, it is an ideal material for microwave oven doors. Same goes for traditional kitchen ovens and dinnerware. Leading brands Pyrex and Corelle are known to make use of tempered glass in their products.

In case tempered glass does break, it shatters into small granules instead of shards with sharp edges. Unlike regular glass and mirrors, broken tempered glass is less likely to cut a person.

Due to its high impact resistance and safe shattering qualities, tempered glass is often used in the following:

  • Commercial building doors
  • Phone booths
  • Glass bus stops
  • Mass transit windows
  • Escalators
  • Solar panels
  • Stairways
  • Automobile side and rear windows
  • Computer monitors
  • Liquid crystal displays (LCD)
  • Bathtubs
  • Shower enclosures
  • Sliding doors
  • Refrigerator shelves
  • Storm doors

What is Laminated Glass?

Laminated glass is made of two or more glass layers. They are joined together by a flexible clear plastic film called polyvinyl butyral (PVB) in between. Mechanical rollers apply pressure to remove any air bubbles between the layers. The glass is then heated to around 150 degrees Fahrenheit.

Laminated glass varies in strength and thickness. Automobile laminated glass is usually around 6.5 millimeters thick while airplane glass is three times as thick.

The main advantage of laminated glass is the PVB interlayer that holds the glass together. Upon impact, this type of glass will stretch before shattering. Broken glass will stick to the film instead of flying into pieces.

There are three additional PVB benefits:

  • More difficult to penetrate
  • High sound insulation
  • Blocks nearly 99 percent of ultraviolet radiation
  • Laminated glass is ideal for applications that involve potential human impact and high security.

Top Uses of Safety Glass

  • Safety

If a toy hits your window, your child is safer with glass that is less likely to break. Better safety is the main reason why laminated glass is most often used in automobile windshields.

  • Security

Because laminated glass is harder to break, it is the best choice for additional security. Applications include bank teller booths, aircraft windshields, and tank viewing glass walls.

  • Blocking UV and sound

Skylights often uses laminated glass because it does an excellent job screening out ultraviolet radiation. It also works best for soundproofing homes.

  • Weather protection

Laminated glass is great for homes that are prone to hurricanes, earthquakes, or tornadoes. This type of safety glass stays glued to the window frame even during high wind and hail.

Laminated glass is also perfect for:

  • Commercial and residential glazing
  • Drive-thru windows
  • Gas stations
  • Jewelry shops
  • Greenhouse windows
  • Glass roofs
  • Glass floors
  • Office partitions
  • Aquariums
  • Cutting boards
  • Thermometers

Contact Glass King for Your Safety Glass Needs!

In the event that your glass window breaks, call Glass King immediately. We provide lightning-quick response, whether you need to repair or replace commercial or home glass structures.

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