March 31, 2022


Whether you are building a new home or interested in replacing windows in your current home, it is essential to know your residential glass options. Most homeowners think of windows from a design perspective, and they focus on the style of the frame more than the function of the glass. There are many glass types to choose from, and they all serve a different purpose. In this article, we will review the common types of residential glass so that you can make an informed decision on the most appropriate windows for your home.

Insulated Glass

Insulated glass is used in double-pane or triple-pane doors and windows for energy efficiency. In general, they are composed of two or three panes of glass, and argon gas is placed between them. Argon is used to minimize the transfer of heat through the glass. This gas is odorless and colorless, but it is not harmful to people or pets if it leaks. In addition to argon gas, insulated glass also contains a desiccant component to prevent condensation buildup. If you have a window fogging up in your home, the seal is most likely leaking, and the window should be repaired or replaced. Keep in mind that different brands have different performance levels and are rated accordingly.

Laminated Glass

Laminated glass is impact resistant, and it is produced with intense heat and pressure. Usually, two panes of glass are fused together with a thin layer of adhesive, known as polyvinyl butyral. The adhesive is very strong and flexible. Whenever laminated glass takes an impact, it cracks and breaks, but the window remains in place, unlike standard glass that shatters into dangerous shards. Aside from its safety properties, this type of glass is also good for sound insulation. Laminated glass is used in automobiles, but it is also commonly used for large windows, security applications, glass doors, railings, and skylights.


Float Glass

Float glass is regular glass, and it gets its name from its manufacturing process. This type of glass is made from molten glass that is floated on top of molten tin. This process creates extremely smooth and thin large panels of glass. Its applications include insulated glass, windows, doors, tabletops, and shelves. It is also inexpensive and colorless.

Tempered Glass

Tempered glass is a strong glass that comes from float glass and a hardening process known as annealing. During the annealing process, glass is heated then it is slowly cooled to harden it. Tempered glass goes through this process multiple times to make it very durable. In fact, tempered glass cannot be cut, but it is still possible to break it. When this type of glass breaks, it shatters, but the shards are not as dangerous as regular float glass. Tempered glass is used for shower doors and automobile windows.

Tinted Glass

Tinted glass is glass with color. It can come in a variety of shades and colors, and it’s used for a number of reasons. People usually associate it with automotive applications, but it is also a great solution for additional privacy in residential and commercial applications. In addition to privacy, tinted glass can also reduce heat, glare, and harmful UV rays.

Obscured Glass

Obscured glass is another option frequently used for increasing privacy. Obscured glass allows the transfer of light; however, it cannot be seen through clearly. This glass will commonly use patterns such as frosting, etching, and other coatings to make this possible. It is used primarily in bathrooms, doorways, and garage doors.


Wired Glass

Wired glass is a fire-resistant glass that is often mistaken for security glass. It is designed to retain the glass in high temperatures during fires. This prevents dangerous shards of glass from shattering and hurting building occupants. While wired glass is more commonly used in commercial applications, its unique appearance can also be used for design purposes. 

Mirrored Glass

Mirrored glass is glass that has the appearance of a mirror. The glass appears to be reflective due to a metal coating and protective sealant applied to one side. This type of glass is traditionally used for decorative applications on items such as walls, doors, and furniture.

Low-E Glass

Low emissivity or Low-E refers to a surface condition that emits low levels of thermal energy. Thus, low-emissivity glass reflects thermal radiation or UV rays, and it is used in houses for its energy efficiency. The coating on this type of glass is unique because it reflects heat back into a house in the winter, and in the summer, it reflects heat away from a house. The initial cost for Low-E glass is high, but you will spend less on heating and cooling your home over time. Sometimes the coatings on this glass make it look tinted, so be sure to research different brands before you purchase. 


Bullet-Resistant Glass

Bullet resistant glass is one form of safety glass, and depending on its design, it can prevent a variety of different caliber sizes from penetrating. This type of glass is extremely impact resistant and its thickness makes it ideal for absorbing energy. Bulletproof glass is usually made from multiple layers of laminated glass, but it can also be made from solid acrylic.

Safety Glass

Safety glass is like bullet-resistant glass in that is used for its impact resistance. However, safety glass is typically installed in areas with severe weather conditions, such as hurricanes and tornados. The glass is capable of protecting against tree limbs and other flying debris.

Glass Inc. Residential Glass

As you can see, there are many different types of residential glass to choose from. It can be overwhelming if you are unsure what your project or application calls for. Glass Inc. is here to help. We have been providing Atlanta, GA, with residential glass services for over 40 years. Whether you are building a new construction, renovating your home, or in need of a replacement piece, Glass Inc. can assist you with all your glass needs. Give us a call today to receive a free quote for your home.

#GlassInc #GlassIncAtlanta #ResidentialGlass #TypesOfResidentialGlass

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