There are many types of glass that can be used in overhead glazing and skylights, whether it’s single, double or triple glazed. So, which should you choose?
Toughened glass and laminated glass
Toughened glass is probably the most popular when it comes to inner panes as, should the worst happen, the glass shatters into very small fragments; avoiding any possibility of serious injury or damage to goods below.
Sunsquare have always been pioneers in this field and as glass quality started to diminish some years ago, we introduced the only skylight to have heat soaked toughened glass in it.
The result is that any imperfections spotted during the glass manufacturing process are recycled and therefore 99% of the problems are solved. We believe, along with the BSI who Kitemarked our entire rooflight range, that this is the very minimum that should be specified.
It took many years for the industry to catch up with us, and now, for most it is a norm. That said, it is a question that should be asked of any rooflight manufacturer from the outset.
As a skylight design and manufacture company who work with some of the world’s best architects every day, we noticed that rooflight specifications for public buildings required a more robust specification to ensure safety always. This led us to implement laminated glass within all our flat roof skylights as standard.
The most useful specification of glass for an inner pane in that environment is a laminated pane. Put simply, this consists of two panes stuck together with an interlayer which means that, should anything shatter the pane, it stays in the same position with zero chance of damage to human or property below.
With a laminated inner pane, there is never any risk of injury from falling glass. This safety consideration is highly relevant no matter what building type, but it’s particularly pertinent for commercial skylight installations such as schools and high-traffic public buildings.
In the event a laminated pane was broken, we could simply renew the double-glazed unit and no-one or nothing has come to any physical harm.
In addition, the interlayer also acts as a UV filter, deflecting as much of the sun’s rays as possible, helping to maintain comfortable indoor temperatures.
In terms of durability and safety in the home, laminated glazing offers increased security for any rooflight as it becomes progressively harder to break through the glass even when it has been broken.
As we’ve already stated, laminated glass is one of the best ways to combat UV rays, but it’s also highly effective against solar gain for interiors too; especially when combined with a solar control glazing coating. This means that the laminated inner panes of the skylight allow visible light to pass through into living space below whilst absorbing and deflecting the vast majority of the UV transmittance.
Laminated glass is here to stay and is almost certain to remain an integral part of any flat roof skylight manufactured by Sunsquare in the years to come. Another huge benefit of laminated glazing is its ability to reduce the impact of external noise within interiors. It is significantly more effective at minimising external noise pollution than a standard double-pane glass skylight and even more so than a plastic skylight.The one challenge with laminated glass is that it is, by its very nature of the additional processing, more expensive than most other forms of glass. At Sunsquare, we decided that we would rather implement the same specification of glass that everyone is afforded in public buildings into the home too. This means that our standard 28mm unit is by far the highest specification of glazed unit offered as standard.
The above begs the question - why take the risk?
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