One of the most prominent and important items of every home is windows. Without windows we do not receive light or air, and perhaps an advantage many people take for granted, the view. Each home has a different number, style and size of window, and if we take it a step further, each room perhaps. Your own personal needs and desires will determine the type of glass you want for the windows.
The glass used for the windows in a majority of homes is a colourless and distortion-free, standard Clear Float Glass. Though just because this is the most commonly used type of glass, it is not the only available type.
Stained glass has traditionally been used in places of worship, and perhaps may be considered old-fashioned. However, walk into a place that has stained glass installed and the absolute beauty of the colours and designs mixed with natural light, takes one’s breath away. The same effect may be created in your home. Not only is stained glass available in colours, it is also available in different textures of glass, for example; flat, ripple, bevel, and more. Depending on the specific artist, various techniques are used to create scenes for your windows, from traditional designs to the more contemporary and abstract. Keeping all these factors in mind, the sceneries that could be created is limitless.
The actual glass that is manufactured goes through many different processes to produce the type of glass suitable for stained glass windows. With some, glass is heated and cooled to produce “toughened or tempered” glass, i.e. it is harder than float glass and when broken, does not cause shards that are dangerous, but shatters into small pieces that are harmless.
With other manufacturing processes, certain chemicals, and/or materials are added to produce a variety of glass, for example; “extra clear” – allows for brilliant clarity which offers true colours and unimpaired views; or “electrochromatic” – where the amount of light changes according to the sunlight and the aim would be to reduce the need for blinds or curtains.
Once again, taking into account the individual needs and choices for your home, the type of glass for your windows could serve many purposes. “Coated Glass” is produced and manufactured for various purposes and the end-use will determine the type of “coating” on the glass. For the energy conscious, glass that has been processed and coated to absorb heat, keep out harmful UV rays, and allow for good insulation will be a good choice..
Perhaps you are concerned with maintenance, scratches or corrosion. Here again, you would be able to install windows that have been processed with the type of coating addressing these issues. The appearance of the glass is modified when surface coatings are applied, thus giving your windows a different look to the standard float glass.
Now, when thinking of building or renovating your home, keep in mind how the choices you make for the windows can transform the overall efficiency and look of this precious investment.