It is critical to choose the right type of glass when designing spaces. The developments in glass processing technology render effective and specific solutions for a wide range of projects. When looking for the right option, it is necessary to evaluate glass’s characteristics and research its impact on your product. What are the parameters to be considered? What factor requires prioritization, and which type provides the highest efficiency? The understanding of why and how is fundamental for the best results.
While climate, surroundings, and elevation are the primary determining points, we look at some other factors which are equally important but are most often missed. These evaluation pointers can prove to be the making moments of your project.
Impact of Glass performance
The benefits of going through the tedious task of choosing the right glass might not be visible immediately, but overlooking it isn’t a great choice. By understanding the importance of a type of glass on the environment and occupants, cost-effective decisions can be made. The wide-reaching benefits of choosing the right glass can be summarized into three types:
- Health– Greater productivity and moods because of temperature control and less artificial atmosphere
- Financial– Reductions on the power bill because of adequate lighting and heating
- Environmental– Reduced greenhouse emissions
Guide for choosing efficient glass fittings
Here is a list of some approaches that can help in choosing the right glass for your project:
- Understand objectives
First of all, knowing the project’s real need allows you to form a basis of evaluation and view the sample under the right conditions. It ensures that your work does not turn out to be costly and exaggerated. Instead, it shifts the focus on decreasing the complexity and addressing the prevailing conditions. So ask yourself questions about design goals like ‘What are you looking for? Ultimate clarity or consistent coloring or reflection of aesthetics?’. It would provide you an integrated approach ahead.
- Basics of dimension
The standard size of the glass panels is 2.5 meters x 3.6 meters. The glass panels can either be primary or have thermal, acoustic, and visual qualities. The glass is cut out to meet the specific needs. In case the panels surpass 2.5-meter height and 4.5-meter width, it is considered for monumental glass. At the beginning of the project, it is advisable to use 4″ x 6″ samples to have a comparative baseline. While designing and construction phases, larger samples can provide a more accurate representation.
- Solar, Thermal and Acoustic Protection
The cost of cooling a place is thrice of heating it. Glass selectivity is a vital research parameter to maintain a balance between the permission of light and avoiding overheating. Higher the selectivity, less heat will pass through. While selectivity is a factor in tropical areas, retaining heat is in the colder regions. In such areas, a double-paned glass is used instead of a monolithic one. Double-paned glass can save up to half of the energy costs. In noisy and crowded areas, either double-paned glass or acoustic Polyvinyl panes are useful. In extreme cases, the space between the panes is widened to reduce disturbance.
- Location of glass (Interior/Exterior)
The right choice of glass heavily depends on the purpose of use. For external usage, insulated glass is used, which lowers UV transmission and increases wind load strength. Other glasses can be soft and hard coat reflective glasses. For interiors, lacquered and laminated glass are used. These glasses are manufactured with high-quality paints and find their niche in decoration.
- Mechanical, fire and theft resistance
If mechanical resistance is the need, then tempered or heat-strengthened glass is the right option. Non-treated glasses can shatter due to excessive heat, but tempered glass is 500% stronger. In fire-prone areas, fire-resistant glass is a necessity. A fire-resistant glass has to be installed with a firewall glass to act as a barrier. This barrier absorbs heat and prevents the spread of toxic gases. The primary concern of modern houses is security against vandalism. Laminated glass is the perfect anti-theft solution. It has a plastic film between two glass panels. For the safety of buildings, layers of lamination are required.
The location, orientation, hours of use, and function, among other variables, are the characteristics a person in the design should understand. Even though the choice of glass seems a minor step, it can significantly affect the energy and efficiency of your project.