Laminated Glass Windows: Pros And Cons

Laminated glass windows have a protective vinyl layer of material inside of two pieces of glass. There are several advantages and disadvantages to using laminated glass in your home.

Advantages

Safety

Standard glass breaks easily under impact. This can cause dangerous accidents and also leaves your home vulnerable to forced entry.

Installing laminated glass windows reduces the risk of being cut by shattered glass. When laminated glass is broken its vinyl inner layer keeps the shards from scattering, much like safety glass. The shards stay affixed to the vinyl liner.

Additional break-in protection is provided since the glass cannot be cut from outside, making glass cutters useless for entering your home.

Sound Reduction

girl sipping out of a cup next to a window

Noise pollution in today’s world is increasing. Airplanes, tractor trailers, trucks, and construction machines make annoying and deafening noises. If your home is close to a construction site, airport, or freeway, you may be particularly interested in the sound-deadening qualities of laminated glass. People who live in neighborhoods where homes are close together may also appreciate this advantage.

Noise is reduced further when two panes are used in each window, with an airspace between the panes. The airspace increases the sound proofing quality of the laminated glass.

Reduced UV Fading

Some furniture, carpets, and curtains fade in the strong Ultra-violet (UV) light allowed in by normal glass. However, UV rays from the sun are blocked up to 95 percent by the film in laminated glass. Visible light comes in, while UV light is blocked.

Impact Resistance

In the case of storms such as hurricanes, tornadoes, and large thunderstorms, laminated glass windows provide the strongest layer of protection possible. If the windows shatter, they won't fly through the house, making them the safer option. This is also true for the errant baseball or golf ball that might come your way.

Disadvantages

Inadequate Airspace

woman washing a window

Much of the noise reduction properties of laminated glass come from the air space between two panes of the laminate, not from the vinyl layer itself. If the windows are installed without the benefit of these air spaces, then the noise reduction properties are greatly reduced.

Installed with Poor Construction

No window is going to be energy efficient and soundproof if the frame is ill-fitting or poorly constructed so a lower-quality window may offer problems. One solution is to install fixed windows (ones that don’t open up) with laminated storm windows over them. That design is generally very effective to keep all the best properties of the windows.

Because of their protective vinyl layer, laminate glass windows are often the most beneficial choice for your home. Make sure the laminate glass is installed properly to enjoy their advantages.