What safety precautions are built into glass shower enclosures?
If you’re considering a bathroom redesign, a frameless shower door or glass enclosure is just what you need to add a sophisticated and modern element to your space. These shower enclosures are easy to use and can make your entire bathroom feel brand new. Sometimes, the idea of installing a large sheet of glass in the bathroom can be daunting to some homeowners. That’s why we’ve created this guide to help you understand the safety precautions, pros and cons of having a glass shower enclosure installed in your bathroom.
There are many benefits of installing these glass enclosures.
- Glass shower enclosures allow you to show off your beautiful tilework inside the shower.
- These shower enclosures come in a variety of textures and styles. If you want a more private shower, you can opt for a different style of glass that will now be as transparent as others.
- Glass shower enclosures brighten up your bathroom space, making it feel much larger than it actually is.
- Frameless shower doors and enclosures can lessen the amount of mold and mildew found in your shower. By eliminating the frame and the shower curtain, there are less places where water can pool and grow mold.
To help put homeowners’ minds at ease, there are a few safety precautions you should consider before installing a glass shower door or enclosure. To start, glass shower doors need to be precisely installed to limit causing any imperfections to the glass during installation. If the glass is not level or the brackets are not installed properly, the glass could crack or break. With the proper professionals on hand, you can rest assured that the glass has been installed with precision and will be safe to use and love for years to come.
Another safety precaution used in glass shower doors and enclosures is the type of glass that is used. Glass manufacturers always use “safety glass” for shower enclosures. This glass is often tempered glass. What is tempered glass? Find out more below.
What is tempered glass?
The glass used in shower enclosures is tempered glass. Tempered glass does not break into large shards like a window will when a baseball goes through it. Rather it will shatter into thousands of tiny pieces that are far less harmless than conventional or “annealed” glass shards. Another pro of tempered glass is that is far stronger than annealed glass. In fact, according to Mark Ford, fabrication development manager at AFG Industries, Inc., “Annealed glass will break at 6,000 pounds per square inch (psi). Tempered glass, according to federal specifications, must have a surface compression of 10,000 psi or more; it generally breaks at approximately 24,000 psi.”
It’s likely that you’re already familiar with tempered glass.
- Automotive glass is always tempered to eliminate dangerous shards if a collision occurs.
- Computer and television monitors are often made of tempered glass. This is done to not hurt the user if an accident was to occur.
- Kitchen appliances use tempered glass to make sure your family is safe if an accident ever occurs.
While glass shower doors and enclosures are elegant, beautiful and made with special glass, they can still break. While these glass shower doors have yet to cause any life-threatening injuries, a shattering door is sure to leave you with a few scratches and quite the scare. While these doors are designed to be very durable, they can easily break if not installed properly. For example, if a poorly installed towel bar comes loose and taps the glass in the wrong spot, it can cause the entire door to shatter. The same can happen if your sliding glass door slides off the track. While these occurrences are extremely rare, they are possible. Here are some tips to help you avoid a glass shower disaster.
Tips to avoid breakage:
- Double check that all moving panels are securely attached to the door system. If concerned, contact a glass professional.
- Do not use the shower door towel bars as to assist you when getting in or out of the shower.
- Make sure all fasteners are tightened and secure.
- Ensure that the moving glass panel is not directly contacting the wall or metal during operation. If something comes in contact with the glass, you run a higher risk of breakage.
- Inspect glass regularly for any chips or cracks, paying special attention to glass edges, notches, and around holes in the glass for hardware. If there is damage, the glass will need to be replaced immediately.
If you have any questions about installing a glass shower enclosure or if you have an existing one that you’d like to replace or check for safety concerns, contact the professionals at More Than Glass by dialing (804) 746-3086. Our team has over 15 years of experience working with glass shower doors so you can rest assured that your new glass enclosure is safe and ready to enjoy for years to come.