What should shop front window glass be made of?

If you own a commercial property, you need the best type of glass for your shop front. Selecting the wrong type when you install or repair your shop front window could lead to theft and in the worst scenario, injury to your staff and customers. Therefore it’s important to know not only what glass to select, but why you should select it. So today, we will cover the two types of glass that make for a secure shop front window.

shop window glass

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What type of glass is used for shop windows?

Toughened and laminated glass are the only two types you should consider. Choosing any other variation will actively risk the security of your shop front, and the safety of your employees and customers. Additionally, in certain areas like Richmond, these forms of safety glass are a legal requirement.

Toughened and laminated glass is a necessity for all shop windows. This is because when they break, they do not create large and dangerous shards that can injure others. While you might find it appealing to purchase cheaper styles, you should always go for laminated or toughened glass for your shop front windows.  

What is laminated glass?

Laminated glass is a type of safety glass that is composed of two or more panels of glass bonded together with a layer of plastic.

Benefits of laminated glass

With laminated glass, you get these benefits:

  • Ability to reduce UV light
    • Great for reducing glare inside a building
    • Beneficial for restaurants or venues that need to have mood lighting
  • Stays intact when damaged
    • The plastic layers keep fragments together
  • It’s much stronger than annealed panes
    • Won’t have to replace it as often
    • Less of a safety risk
    • 4 times stronger than annealed glass
  • Reduces outdoor sound
    • Outside noise will not distract customers or employees 

Does laminated glass shatter?

As pointed out in the benefits section, the plastic layer acts as a barrier between the 2 sheets of glass and prevents them from breaking into shards or shattering into little pieces. You won’t have to worry about any injured customers or employees because laminated glass does not shatter

What is toughened glass?

With toughened glass or “tempered glass”, you are paying for a type of safety glass that has been treated with heat or chemicals to make it stronger and less likely to break. We highly recommend installing toughened glass if your area deals with high amounts of theft or vandalism. 

The benefits of toughened glass

Toughened glass is the strongest commercially available glass on the market. This is why it is so highly recommended for shop front window use. In fact, tempered glass is 5 times stronger than annealed glass, which makes it 25% stronger than laminated

Here are some other benefits:

  • Very resilient to thermal shock
  • Can reduce UV light
  • Reduces outdoor sound
  • Difficult to scratch surface
  • Cheaper than laminated panes 

Does toughened glass shatter? 

Toughened glass can shatter. However, when it shatters, it breaks into small blunt shards. Although tempered glass is manufactured to be highly resistant to impact, it will still break if hit hard enough or when it experiences a sharp change in heat which can cause thermal shock. However, since it is heat treated, thermal shock is unlikely to ever occur.

We can install safety glass for you

At Britannia, we provide the top emergency glaziers for London and beyond. Our glaziers will be at your property to repair your shop front windows in a flash. Our experts will be sure to cover their recommendations 

So be sure to give us a call at 0203 305 7161. We have decades of experience and a network of professional glaziers ready to help you when you need it most.