Glass is an evolving material. From its earliest development in ancient times, to its modern day use as a design element with functional properties, glass can create elegance and purpose for every home or business.
For exterior applications of a home or business, long gone are the days when glass usage could be thought of as drafty energy losing fundamentals. Today’s architectural glass offers energy saving properties- in the form of low e insulated in conjunction with thermally broken metal framing- meeting the highest level of energy standards- even here in NY. The insulated glass can be clear, tinted and available in a range of colors and shapes to meet each glass projects particular needs.
Glass railings are also a growing in popularity- both commercially and residential. The railing allows for an open feel, without obscuring views while offering security as a guard rail. The glass is durable and nearly maintenance free. Here in the Hudson Valley area, where river views are in great demand, the glass railing has proven to offer exceptional practicality and is considered to be a must have architectural element by most preferred glazing contractors and designers.
Glass shower doors has grown to be a must have in every home. The European styled enclosure offers both a beautiful open design as well as a purposeful function in keeping water into the shower area. There are extensive hardware options and glass options for this style enclosure. It is highly suggested to have the glass protected with a sealant on the inside surface to prohibit the accumulation of hard water stains. Ritec ClearShield is a greatly regarded glass treatment product and has been the recipient of many awards. The all glass frameless shower door is usually installed about two weeks after measuring. The all glass enclosures, when provided by a competent glass company, will offer the highest quality hinges and hardware, the hinges should not be made of aluminum as this isn’t considered structural as needed for the heavy glass the enclosure uses. The design that is most preferred is the type that uses clamps to secure the fixed panels versus the more dated “u” channel application. The more professional companies offer the clamps style as its much cleaner in appearance and creates more of an all glass look.
For businesses or home offices, the all glass entrance is a much sought after design. These types of entrances offer an all glass door with adjacent glass panels. The metal framing is minimal and creates beautiful architectural styling. The image the all glass entrance creates is one of professionalism.
Colored glass is also a trending product. Many choose colored glass for backsplashes, counter tops and bar tops. The glass surface is durable and easy to keep up and can be designed to accommodate any décor. The glass can be extremely thick and fashioned to be a safety glass to make sure the greatest level of durability. Some opt for textures to be incorporated into the glass design for added beauty.
When choosing a glass contractor, one should carefully examine the company for the following elements to guarantee the greatest level of customer satisfaction. The company should be competent, having years of established service and experience. Ask for references for completed architectural glass products. Ask the glass company if you may see finished installations. A glass company that makes their own products and has the latest state of the art machinery is also desirable; as they are most likely to offer the best finished architectural glass product and have the highest level of skilled workers. Pricing is also important. It is not in the consumer’s best interest to go ahead with either the lowest or the highest price glass contractor, as the lowest person is likely to have the least skilled workers and the highest is looking to mark the product up as much as possible. But a company whose price is set in the middle is probably your best bet.