Clearing Up Some Confusion About Residential Glass

Before you buy new windows or glass doors for your home, you may want to take a few minutes and educate yourself about the various types of glass that are available to you. Many homeowners are confused about the glass used in windows and doors and they don't make the best choices. Note some misconceptions and confusion about these pieces so you can better discuss your options with a window or door installer.

Double-glazed glass doors

You may assume that double-glazed glass is only used in windows, but this type of glass is also good for glass doors, as well as glass inserts in entryway doors. Double-glazed simply refers to two panes of glass that are sealed together with a layer of air or argon gas between them. This adds to the overall durability of the glass and means more layers of insulation for your home.

Triple-glazed versus double-glazed

While double-glazed glass is good for your  home, triple-glazed windows and glass doors, meaning those made with three layers of glass rather than two, can offer more insulation inside the home and more sound insulation from noise outside. However, most homes can suffice with double-glazed glass for windows and doors; unless you live in a climate with extremes in temperature or near a busy roadway, you may not need to spend on triple-glazed glass.

If you are unsure if you need this upgrade to your home's windows and doors, choose triple-glazed glass for the side of your home facing the roadway or that gets the most direct sunlight. You can then save some money by using double-glazed glass on all other windows and doors in the home.

Toughened and laminated glass

In your area, there may be local building and safety codes that dictate certain glass doors and windows be made of a rugged glass to reduce the risk of injury from flying shards if that glass should break. However, those codes may not affect upper story windows, small windows that are located in a hallway or bathroom and the like. In those cases, clear float glass, which is very thin and not very strong, might be used. This glass is very affordable and offers the most light transmission into the home. Glass merchants can note if this is an option for your particular windows or doors that need replacing, but make this choice, along with all other glass choices, carefully.