What Are The Different Types Of Impact Glass Materials?

Choosing the right impact resistant glass materials is a very important part of the process of buying windows and doors.

Choosing between insulated laminated glass and laminated glass

Laminated impact resistant glass is made up of 2 different sheets of glass which also has an inter-layer which is what bonds them together.  Laminated glass is one of the most popular hurricane barriers that are used in manufacturing impact resistant windows.  Most of us are already familiar with laminated glass; it is the same type of glass that is used to make windshields of cars.  The difference, however, is that with hurricane impact resistant products is that the manufacturers use a special film interlayer and a thicker sandwich of glass to make the impact glass a lot stronger.  Some other benefits of laminated glass are:

  • It can reduce your air conditioning and heating energy bill
  • Enhanced security protection for your home
  • Reduces noise transmission
  • Eliminates up to 99% of UV rays

Now let us look at Insulated Laminated Glass, this is just like the laminated glass we just discussed above, but with one extra pane of glass on top of the laminated glass and it has a gas filled space in the middle or what some refer to as a hermetically sealed air space.  Insulated laminated glass will have enhanced energy efficiency, so as you are probably already guessing they are more expensive.  What this gas filled or air filled space does, is it serves as an insulator to regulate the temperature difference that is present between the outside and inside temperatures.  If you live in colder climates you will especially like this type of glass, because it can improve the efficiency of Low-E coatings and some local building departments and architects actually require these types of windows to be used.

The other thing you will have to choose between is whether or not you would want Low-E Coating or to get Glass Tints.

Let’s start with Tinted Glass, CGI windows offer a wide selection of glass tints and when it comes to hurricane protection, then you will find that tinted glass is probably the most cost effective solution when considering both energy efficiency and cost reductions.  How tinted glass really works, is that it is designed to absorb the solar radiation from the sun and as a result your home will be cooler as the light transfer and heat entering the room of your house will be greatly reduced.  The most common types of tinted windows are bronze and gray; they both equally reduce the amount of heat and light transfer that would enter a house.  But if you are looking for greater penetration of visible light, then you may want to consider either green or blue tinted windows, but the disadvantage of these is they don’t reduce the amount of heat transfer as the other colors.

Some other things to consider is that gray and bronze tints will give the interior of your home a more neutral color, while the blue and green tints will tend to paint your room in blue and green.  Of course you can always get clear glass; however the heat transfer will not be minimized at all without tints or some type of special coating.

And there are Low-E Glass Coatings, which is applied to the inside glass surface, what this does is separate the short wave or light energy and the long wave or heat energy.  The long wave or heat energy is reflected back towards the source of the heat, while at the same time allowing the light energy or short wave to pass through the Low-E Coating.  CGI Windows sell many high performance coatings that come with any of their insulated laminated window products.  However, if you prefer the laminated products, then CGI windows also offer high performance coatings for those as well, which is basically a special interlayer, instead of the typical PVB interlayer.  The benefits of PVB interlayers are that it will absorb any moisture that is created which could cause discoloration or corrode the soft coat.

How does a homeowner decide, when faced with all these options of Insulated Glass, Low-E or Tints?

If you live in warmer climates and you are on a budget, then stay away from insulated glass, unless of course it is required by your local building department and instead go for either clear glass with Low-E or tinted glass.  However, if money is not a concern for you, then insulated laminated glass will give you the best energy performance.  And don’t forget to consult with your impact window dealer about staying in compliance with your local building code requirements.

We Service Other Areas in Miami-Dade:

Miami Lakes FL, Hurricane Resistant Windows Miami, Coral Gables FL, Cutler Bay FL, Palmetto Bay FL, Opa Locka FL, Miami Beach FL, Miami Gardens FL, Doral FL, Miami Shores FL, Kendall FL, Golden Beach FL, Sweet Water FL, Coconut Grove FL, Aventura FL, North Miami Beach FL, Homestead FL, Florida City FL, South Miami FL, Hialeah FL, Key Biscayne FL, Bal Harbour FL, Pinecrest FL

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