Float Glass (also called Annealed Glass) is used as a base product to produce other types of glass such as Toughened Glass or Laminated Glass. It is manufactured by allowing the molten glass to cool slowly in a controlled environment. Once produced, float glass is cut to the required size, before undergoing further manufacturing processes such as tempering. Float glass if broken, will shatter into sharp-edged shards. Thus, for safety reasons, special care should be taken when considering using this product. Usually, this glass is suited for smaller applications such as cabinet glass doors, basement windows, tabletops, mirrors and more. Float glass is relatively cheap in comparison to other glass types such as Toughened glass.
Tempered glass or more commonly called safety glass. It's probably the most common type of glass used in glass partitioning. This glass is manufactured using a thermal tempering process, resulting in the glass becoming four to five times stronger and structurally more durable than annealed glass.
It is also safer than annealed glass when broken. Tempered Glass breaks into small chunks or bits of glass, rather than sharp-edged shards that are more likely to cause injury. This characteristic of "crumbling" to smaller pieces when broken is a result of the tension created using different cooling rates between the surface and interior of the glass sheet during manufacture. Tempered Glass cannot be cut after it has been manufactured, it must be cut to size before the toughening process. Thus the glass must be measured accurately before manufacturing to avoid costly wastage. Due to the additional manufacturing processes, Toughened Glass is more expensive than Float Glass.
Laminate Glass is made of two sheets (or more) of glass, usually Tempered Glass. The sheets are laminated or bonded together using a plastic interlayer. Laminated glass is available in various thicknesses, and different combinations of glass can be used to create a laminated glass panel. The interlayer helps keep the glass panel together as one, even when broken. As a result, there is reduced risk of injury due to broken glass. Due to its strength and durability, laminated glass can be used for glass floors, glass balustrades, external glass in areas with a high risk of natural disasters such as hurricanes and security reasons.
Laminated Glass also significantly improves sound reduction when a suitable sound interlayer is used - called Acoustic Glass (Acoustic Glass uses the same production principles as Laminated Glass). Laminate Glass is more expensive than Tempered Glass.
You don’t have to break your budget to increase the value of your window and door. If need any advise on the glass selection, please do not hesitate to contact us.
We’d love to chat about how we can add value – and extra security – to your home.