Windows are essential to any building, providing natural light, ventilation, and a view of the outside world. However, choosing the right type of glass for your windows can be daunting. Many different types of glass are available, each with unique properties and benefits. Some are more energy-efficient than others, some are stronger and more durable, and some are better at blocking out noise. We cover some of the most common window glass types, the benefits of retrofit double glazing, and how to choose the best window glass for your needs.
Window Glass Types
Float glass is the most used type of window glass. This type of glass is made by floating a sheet of molten glass on a bed of molten metal, usually tin, resulting in smooth and flat glass with a uniform thickness that you can cut into various sizes and shapes. With transparent and high visible light transmittance features, float glass is frequently used as the building block for many types of interior, exterior, and architectural glass products.
The colour and quality of the glass can vary depending on the raw materials used and the process. For example, body-tinted or heat-absorbing float glass has the same production process as clear float glass. However, it has the addition of colouring agents during production to achieve a range of tinted shades such as grey, bronze, green, and blue. Tempered glass is made by heating and rapidly cooling float glass to create a tougher and more durable product, commonly used in applications where safety is a concern. Float glass is highly versatile and offers numerous benefits, including energy efficiency, durability, and clarity, making it the go-to choice for many window construction projects.
Low-emissivity (Low-E) glass is a type of energy-efficient glass with a special coating that helps reflect heat into the room. The coating is typically a thin layer of metal oxide, which reflects infrared radiation and helps to keep heat inside the building during colder months and outside during warmer months. It also has higher insulative properties than standard uncoated glass due to its low-emissivity film, thus making it an excellent option for those looking to reduce energy consumption in their homes. This results in lower power bills, a more environmentally friendly home, less condensation on your windows, less glare and UV radiation, and a great resale value for your home. When selecting this window glass type, we recommend looking out for the NZS 4211 label, proof that your purchase has been rigorously tested for various performance criteria, including air leakage, water leakage, and wind resistance.
Double glazing refers to windows consisting of two panes of glass separated by a gap containing air or gas, which acts as insulation. Compared to single-glazed windows, double-glazed windows provide better insulation by restricting heat transfer and are known for their energy efficiency. This window glass type is perfect for helping you save money on heating in winter and cooling costs in summer.
Triple-glazed windows consist of three panes of glass that seal to form an insulated unit. This window type is very energy efficient, as the extra pane of glass provides better insulation. The two air gaps between the three panes of glass significantly reduce heat loss. However, while triple glazing offers superior insulation, this window glass type is typically more expensive. It is a good option for those looking for maximum energy efficiency and sound insulation, but it may not suit everyone due to the higher cost.
How to Choose the Best Window Glass
Choosing the right window glass for your home ensures comfort and energy efficiency. When making this decision, we recommend carefully considering the star rating system used in New Zealand, which rates the energy performance of the combination of glass type and frame. We also suggest choosing window and door glass types with the highest star rating within your budget.
Trust the Window Glass Experts
For high-quality double-glazed windows in Auckland, look no further than Atlas Glass. We assist you with the entire process, from recommending and supplying a range of glass solutions to helping with your installation. Need help figuring out where to start? Consulting an expert glazier like Atlas Glass will help guide you towards the best choice for your home's functional and aesthetic needs. Reach out to us today!