Glass Floors: Are They Safe

Glass Floors: Are They Safe?

Posted by | 09-04-2019
One of the most common and prevailing myths regarding glass floors is that glass is weak and that glass floors are not safe. But this is untrue and, if constructed and installed correctly, glass floors are just as safe as many other flooring options. If you’re considering glass flooring for the home, you might want to learn about the structural performance of glass and identify some of the common safety myths that continue to cause confusion. In this post, we’ll highlight the safety of glass floors.

Glass floors are just as safe as wood floors

The first important point to note is that glass floors are just as safe as wood floors. In fact, since most glass floor panels are built by laminating together two or more pieces of tempered glass and placing them into a support structure, they are able to meet stringent building code requirements and can be stronger than other traditional flooring options (i.e, wood floors and subfloors).

Glass floors can be used inside and outside

Many people believe that glass floor can be damaged by the elements more easily compared to wood flooring, and therefore glass floors shouldn’t be used outdoors. This is simply not true. Glass flooring offers immense durability within outdoor applications, and is often used for second-floor decking (similar to a skylight), to allow light to flow to below exterior basement spaces.

Glass floors require specialized installation

While some pre-fabricated systems are available in the market, glass floors should be carefully designed in coordination with the other structural support systems, reviewed and approved by a qualified engineer, and installed by a professional team to ensure they stand the test of time and provide safe and enjoyable use for you and your family.

Glass floors can be made with custom colour options

There are a number of choices to be made when you select a glass floor for your home space. And it’s not true that glass simply comes in one colour ready for installation. You can choose from a range of colours, ensuring access to a glass floor that will readily blend in with the rest of your home space. Many people add coloured glass floors to bridging areas throughout the home as a way of inviting colour and bringing design appeal to the space.Glass floors are offered in a range of sizingMany are also falsely believe that glass floors are only available in one sizing range and can only be offered for smaller areas throughout the property. Again, this is a myth and you can actually build glass floors that will cover large areas throughout your home. Panels can be separated by spanning members and other support structures to limit to weight load.

Glass floors are not slippery

While glass floors can be slippery when wet, coatings are available to provide extra traction should it be required for your project. Be sure to check with a glass expert, and consider the area, use and traffic level when choosing the appropriate glass and any coatings for your glass floor project.

Glass floors can offer privacy

One of the more common myths we hear from clients reviewing their glass flooring options is that glass cannot provide them with privacy in areas below the floor. But this isn’t true either. Many art building owners and studio builders are worried that glass flooring might compromise the dignity of someone who might be wearing a skirt and standing on a glass floor with a view from below. But most glass floors used in this type of application are designed with etched glass, a privacy film or an opaque interlayer that provides privacy and also allows light to pass through. Many options exist, but they are difficult to change after the project has been installed, so be sure to get samples and choose the right product for your job.

What to consider when buying glass flooring

So now that you have a clear understanding of the safety and performance of glass flooring, it’s time to consider the purchase process and the elements you must review before completing the purchase. Our trusted team at Glass Showers & More has great experience in this area of the marketplace. We’ve helped homeowners throughout the region choose quality glass floors for their property. And we recommend that you consider the following factors when choosing glass flooring products.

First, determine whether you need clear or obstructed glass

When making a decision about the type of glass flooring required, make sure you consider the benefits of both clear and obstructed glass for the application. The goal is often to allow light to pass through the glass, while still allowing privacy for those above. Consider the benefits and constraints of both glass styles before moving forward.

Consider the size and shape of the flooring space

A clear benefit of glass panels is they can be made in any size or shape, and this will give you great flexibility when using the panels for your project. Work with your contractor team to consider the size and weight of the glass panels, as well as the need for structural support systems to safeguard the flooring. By making this process a priority you’ll achieve the ideal foundation for the design work.

Talk to an engineer

Before moving forward with your glass flooring project, make sure you or your contractor have reviewed the design with an appropriately qualified engineer. Glass floors are structural elements and subject to applicable building codes.

Consider an anti-skid top surface

As we discussed earlier, glass flooring can be designed to mitigate the issue of slipping and falling. Using an anti-skid, textured surface is the most common solution to this performance challenge. Anti-skid coatings help ensure the glass floor is not only safer to walk on but, in certain cases, can also help the glass hold up more effectively to scratching during everyday use.Our team at Glass Showers & More is here to help you select quality glass flooring products for your upcoming property upgrade. To discover more about our company and the services we provide, contact us today!

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Glass Showers and More is a leading provider of custom glass and mirror products serving home builders, contractors and home-owners in the Greater Toronto Area. With our in-house fabrication capabilities, we are able to provide our customers with highly customized solutions for all of their glass needs. Our team of product experts and installers allows us to provide a truly turn-key glass solution to our customers.