A Guide To Safety Glass & Building Glass

Safety glass sheet laminated glass tempered glass Sigmadoors

6mm glass panel clear Safety glass laminated safety glass tempered glass SigmadoorsBuilding Glass and Safety Glass – FAQs

Glass is a translucent material that fabricators make by applying heat to sand. In most parts of the world, building glass is an essential material in construction. Using building glass gives elegance and class to modern houses. It improves the aesthetic appeal of any building. 

Glass is a fascinating and brilliant building material. It enables you to have a clear view of your environment from within the building. Having several varieties and uses, the importance of glass can never be over-flagged.

Choosing the right type of glass for a particular section of your building may be quite difficult. You’ll need to understand the benefits and demerits of most glass types to make the right choice for any building or construction. 

Here are some frequently asked questions about building glass to guide you when choosing it for any part of your building.

  • Is laminated glass worth it?

The numerous advantages of laminated glass make it worth having for your building. Laminated glass is a better alternative to normal glass. Its robust structure makes it quite difficult to break. To manufacture laminated glass, fabricators bond two piles of glass. Also, interlayers in the permanent bond of laminated glass give it a robust and sturdy structure. This makes the glass resistant to impact.

Laminated glass reduces noise pollution. The reason is that the laminated glass will disrupt the noise waves as they travel within it. This particular feature of laminated glass is not obtainable in ordinary glass types. Also, the glass has low emissivity, which reduces heat gain, especially from the sun. 

You also get increased safety and security by using laminated glass. Due to the interlayers of laminated glass, there’s an increase in the glass strength. This strength makes it quite hard to break in by thieves. Also, it won’t be possible to widen the crack on the glass in cases of a break. The interlayers in the bonded lamination uphold the glass structure’s strength. When there’s accidental breaking, the glass won’t shatter, which reduces the possibility of getting a cut. With that, you can be sure of your family’s safety.

  • How much does laminated glass cost?

Generally, laminated glass is expensive. The strength of laminated glass is a contributing factor to its cost. Remember that in the lamination of the glass, there is not one layer of glass. The interlayers consist of more than one layer of glass, and it also has resin. This helps to fortify the strength and structure of laminated glass. Thus, laminated glass doesn’t shatter when it’s broken.

Also, laminated glass has more application in buildings that are prone to burglary. This’s because the security potential of the glass is top-notch. It’s extremely hard to forcefully widen laminated glass in situations of burglary. The interlayers are good protection and security measures for the structure of the glass. Thus, laminated glass is used to increase security in buildings. The glass will also serve as a soundproof in your doors and windows.

As a high-end glass in your home, the cost of laminated glass will take a deep cut in your pocket. Comparing the cost of replacing an ordinary glass window to a laminated window and also depending on the size, you can budget around R1500 or more. If it’s a door, the cost will be up to R3,500 and above.

  • Can you laminate glass yourself?

Laminated glass can be referred to as a safety glass. It is made up of glass sheets bounded by a flexible and transparent material. Laminated glass is a combination of layers of ‘annealed’ glass with a layer of PVB (polyvinyl butyric) or plastic. A typical example of how these layers are combined is either a sandwich (glass-plastic-glass) or a cake in that order.

You can make a laminated glass yourself by laminating pieces of glass, usually two with a PVB (plastic) layer in between. You will heat the sandwich and carefully press them together. The plastic will melt and glue to the glass layers; you will then allow it to cool. The laminated glass looks similar to a normal glass piece but does not break out when smashed. 

The laminating process has turned the glass into a composite, and it is now stiffer compared to a single glass sheet. The process of laminating glass is easy and can be made at home using a piece of plastic, a toaster oven, and a binder clip.  But since heating is involved, one needs to be conscious of his or her safety to avoid unnecessary accidents. 

Laminated glasses, if broken, stick to the PVB plastic instead of falling off. They are also soundproof and ultraviolet.

  • Is laminated glass burglar-proof?

Laminated glass consists of different layers in either sandwich or cake form, unlike the normal glass. They are stronger and are designed to be installed mostly in areas where security is a priority. Such areas include the doorways, commercial buildings, street-level displays or windows, and others. Thus, one can say that laminated glass can aid in protecting against smash and grab criminals.

During a burglary, the criminal will not find it easy to break through this type of safety glass quickly. This delay will force him to look for an easier alternative, thereby discouraging him from breaking in.

However, installing laminated glass does not guarantee total security as burglars can still break in with patience or if given enough time. To make your laminated glass stronger, you are required to add more sheets or layers to it. This implies that the cake pattern will be stronger and tougher. This will prevent more break-ins and provides more security than the sandwich arrangement. The former is also more shatter-resistant than the latter.

By including additional layers to your building glass, it will become tougher and more resistant to breakages. It delays the burglar hence can be used for both security and safety purposes.

  • How strong is Laminated Glass?

To penetrate a laminated glass, one requires more than ordinary baseball, gulf ball, or brick. The glass is said to be strong because it can withstand a bullet or the force of rocks without shattering. Even though it cracks, it will not fall off its frame. Laminated glass can stand minor explosions and serves as one of the major components in making ‘bulletproof glass.

This strength is linked to the type of resin used as the middle layer and the number of layers. The heating process and also the pressure contribute to making it five times stronger. This also makes it a hundred times stiffer compared to the normal glass. Due to its strength, laminated glass is currently used to meet the demanding building codes enforced in Florida as a hurricane safety measure.

However, the laminated glass is not as strong as the tempered glass. Tempered glass is another type of safety glass whose strength is attributed to its high stages of heat and pressure. Even at that, the laminated glass is used for protection against severe weather conditions like earthquakes and tornadoes. In a nutshell, the laminated glass is strong enough to protect from several conditions. It could be from natural disasters like a wind storm, earthquakes, and tornadoes, or minor explosions by blocking flying debris from entry. Also, it keeps off flying objects like bricks, golf, and baseballs.

  • What is the best type of glass for house windows and doors?

Glass for house windows and doors need to be strong, UV protective, and sound-resistant. They are supposed to be burglar-proof as they form the major interior and exterior entrance or exit from the house.

The glass windows and doors produced in this modern time are mostly made of energy-efficient tempered glass and are designed in different styles. Tempered glass can be referred to as an annealed glass that has four times its strength compared to the normal glass. The glass cannot be cut, and the method of tempering requires heating the glass to a temperature above 1200oC. The glass is quickly cooled down afterward.

Hence, window and door designs made from tempered glass are the perfect option for the front windows and doors of any house as they help to secure the home and are aesthetically pleasing. This is the smartest choice.

However, laminated type of safety glass is also another good option for the windows and doors of a house for security and safety reasons. The technology used for producing them is the same as that of the vehicle windshield. This type of glass makes sure that glasses do not hit the occupant or splash on them when being hit by an object. When it breaks, the glass crumbles instead of breaking into different pieces.

  • What is Safety Glass?

Safety glass is a kind of glass which when shattered, disintegrates into very tiny grains of glass. Unlike the normal glass that easily shatters into irregular and jagged shapes, it doesn’t break easily. This makes it much safer around people. The safety glass has undergone some chemical and thermal procedures to increase its toughness. 

The first safety glass to be produced was by the French Chemist Edwuoard Benedictus in 1909. The glass can be formed in either of two ways. The first is by heating it to over 650o C through a process called “heat treatment” to strengthen its quality. The second way is by sandwiching a slim piece of polyvinyl butyral (PVB) in-between two annealed or normal glasses. 

These processes produce the same result in both ways as the safety glass is 6 times stronger than normal glass. The safety glass is tough enough to withhold blows from strong objects. It’s also used in cars to resist people from bursting forth if an accident should take place.

  • What is Safety Glass Used For?

The windows and front windscreens of vehicles are one of the applications of safety glasses. You must have come across vehicles with “webbed” screens. This happens as a result of a forceful hit upon the windscreen. If the glass weren’t safety glass, it would have shattered into jagged shards, but the PVB in the windscreens resists that.

Also, safety glass is usually the preferred choice for showrooms. It has been the preferred choice of store owners as an alternative to standard glass. Its toughness provides a great option for businesses. It is mostly used in jewelry stores, fast-food restaurants, etc., to showcase products.

Furthermore, it is used for doors and windows. The use of safety glass for doors increases daily for homeowners with verandas. Not only does it provide a great alternative to the annealed glass, but it also secures the home against forceful entries. Tempered safety glasses are stain-proof, very clear, and easy to clean. 

When used in the home or office, it brings a modern, styled and innovative look into being. It is stronger and lighter than legacy materials—whether used as a window or door.

Safety glasses are becoming popular when it comes to the production of bullet-proof and armored vehicles. 

Also, they can be used to make staircases. With the increasing use of glass for modernity in halls and malls, safety glasses have arisen to be an effective feature. Their very attractive looks are reinforced with a resilient structure that can withhold much pressure.

Conclusively, asides from being a great building material, safety glasses have been manufactured to be shielding glasses. Whether used by artisans, technicians, or engineers, the material provides a secure functionality as a protective glass.

  • Is Safety Glass the same as Tempered Glass?

The short answer is yes, tempered glass is another type of safety glass.  The tempered glass is formed through the uniformed heating of standard glass, then cooling it very fast. This’s a type of safety glass that is heated up to 1100 – 1300 degrees Fahrenheit in a process called “thermal treatment.”  

This type of glass is very strong and very hard to break.  When the glass eventually breaks it shatters into very tiny pieces that cannot cause any serious harm to a person.

  • Can safety glass break?

The safety glass is up to 4-6 times tougher than traditionally formed glass. Since laminated glasses are made from laminating a layer of PVB between two layers of glass, it hardly breaks. When a forceful blow is dealt upon it, the glass, rather than scatter, is held back by the PVB. If it scatters, it reduces to granular forms, which are more secure around humans.


This makes the safety glass a very great choice of modern looks for multiple options. 

So, if you are wondering if the Safety glass does break, it does and does so in a safe way.