Different Types of Commercial Glass

If you look around the city of Boston you’ll surely find gorgeous high-rise buildings that use a heavy amount of glass. Commercial glass is seen virtually everywhere and comes in an array of types and applications. Below is some information on the types and uses of commercial glass to help you stay informed.

Soda Lime Glass is primarily used for window applications because it lacks color and is composed of sodium and calcium. Because soda lime glass transmits vast amount of light, it has quite popular for centuries. Similarly to borosilicate, soda lime glass is durable and can withstand powerful chemicals.

Silica Glass is a thin and transparent type of glass that is commonly used for windows. Because of the high sand content, the melting process can be difficult which usually leads to a high price tag.

Laminated Glass is made of two or more lites that are bonded by heat or pressure and consist of one or more plastic interlayers of polyvinyl. Injury risks are generally reduced because fragments adhere to the plastic layers.

Benefits of Laminated Glass Include:

  • Hurricane/High Wind Resistance
  • Sound Reduction
  • Protection Against Forced Entry
  • Ideal for Storefronts/Protection from Thefts
  • Bullet Resistant

Insulating Glass improves thermal performance by offering a thermal break. Perfect for New Englanders, insulating glass keeps heat in during the winter and heat out during the summer. This type of glass also reduces air-to-heat transfer through glazing.

Tempered Glass is considered a “safety glass” due to the fragments being relatively small if the glass is broken. Architects generally gravitate towards tempered glass for commercial projects. It is generally 3 or 4 times stronger than annealed glass of the same thickness.

Spandrel Glass is commonly used on columns, floors, HVAC systems, wiring and plumbing. Spandrel glass is typically used on large areas such as curtain walls or structural glazing. However, the daylight conditions can affect the perception of vision-to-spandrel appearance.

Silk-Screened Glass creates a pattern to the glass surface by applying ceramic frit or paint. This glass allows designers to customize exterior and interior glass with patterns and colors. Silk-Screened Glass is a great way to reduce glare and increase privacy.