How To Fit A Glass Balustrade For Easy Installation

Wondering how to fit a glass balustrade for easy installation? Look no further! We’ve broken the process down into four easy steps:

  1. Measuring and marking
  2. Installing the support posts
  3. Attaching the glass clamps
  4. Fitting the glass clamps

The installation method will vary slightly depending on your choice of material for the underlying surface For example, metal, wood, brick or concrete.

A few tips before we get started:

  • It helps to have a spare pair of hands! There will be points during the installation process in which it will help to have someone hold materials steady and in place or pass you a tool.
  • Double check, even triple check your measurements and parts. There is nothing worse than getting stuck into an installation only to realise that something won’t fit or line up, and that you’re going to have to re-order something.
  • Whenever lifting heavy materials, such as the glass panels, make sure that you assume the correct stance. That means a straight back and bent knees.

How To Fit A Glass Balustrade For Easy Installation

Step 1: Measuring and Marking

When it comes to fitting a glass balustrade for easy installation, the key is to get this first step. It’s all about the measurements. You’re going to mark out on the floor exactly where each post needs to be affixed so that the glass panels fit between them. You can use a ruler or level to ensure that all the postmarks line up perfectly.  If you’re reluctant to mark your floor in any way, simply put down some masking tape and write on that.

Step 2: Installing The Balustrade Posts

Taking each post one at a time, drill the required depth of pilot hole and the correct fixings to fit the post in place.

For a wooden underlying surface, you will need to drill a 6mm pilot hole to a depth of 80mm in the wood for each screw. We would always encourage clients to use stainless steel screws as they do not deteriorate and rust when exposed to water. This is a particular important point to remember if you are installing the balustrade outdoors, perhaps on a balcony or deck. Looking to the long term, using stainless screws will result in less maintenance.

Metal surfaces will also require you to drill a pilot hole, but at a depth of 50mm this time. Again, try and use stainless steel bolts and then stainless steel locking washers to secure it in place. Brick and concrete surfaces will require pilot holes of 80-100mm depth and 10mm wide. We would suggest using stainless steel floor anchor fixings for this floor type.

Hold off on immediately tightening all the fixings as far as possible. We recommend first checking that each post is level with the others by using a spirit level. Simply place it along the top of the posts in the space where the glass will soon rest. Once you are satisfied with your adjustments, you can finish tightening the fixings with a spanner or socket.

Step 3: Attaching The Glass Clamps

Glass clamps are used to secure the glass to the balustrade posts and ensure that the weight is evenly distributed. For safety reasons, glass balustrades are made from toughened glass. This type of glass cannot be drilled once heated during production and so glass clamps are necessary to hold it in place. At Glass & Stainless, we recommend using 4 clamps per square metre of glass, located towards the top and bottom of the posts. Use a spirit level to ensure that all of the glass clamps are perfectly level with each other. Always ensure that you have the right size glass clamps for the thickness of your glass.

Step 4: Fitting The Glass Panels

With the glass clamps in place, you can now carefully slide in your glass between the clamps. Most glass clamps can be slightly adjusted with screws so that the rubber fits snugly around the glass. Only make incremental adjustments so as to avoid over-pressurising the glass. If you’re glass panels are designed to leave gap to the floor, you might need to place some supporting blocks between the posts for the glass to rest on whilst you tighten the panel. Just make sure the supports are equal height.

Do you have more questions about how to fit a glass balustrade for easy installation? Get in touch today to discuss our glass installation service.

How to Create a Pinterest Perfect Bathroom with Bespoke Glass

Pinterest, the image-based social media site, has transformed how people approach interior design. Now enthusiastic DIY home improvers automatically turn to the platform for inspiration, using the hundreds and thousands of images posted to the site from around the world to formulate their own grand designs, including bespoke glass.

The phenomenon has even given rise to a new phrase – Pinterest perfect. Something that is ‘Pinterest perfect’ is quite literally something that is good enough to post on Pinterest – an image or a design that is considered aesthetically pleasing enough to inspire and excite others, winning lots of admiration and shares.

So what are the practical secrets behind creating that Pinterest perfect bathroom? Here are some great tips for how bespoke glass can make all the difference in crafting that winning design.

Make your shower a feature with bespoke glass

Struggling to get excited about plain old shower cubicles? Looking for something that will create an eye-catching centrepiece to anchor your entire bathroom design? With bespoke glass panels, shower screens don’t have to be samey.

One of the great things about custom-made glass is that you can shape it however you wish. Awkward spaces in your bathroom can be brought into use as a walk-in shower, while you have the freedom to experiment with different sizes and types of basin, including curved edges. One really attractive option is to build a base out of brick and tile it, installing glass panels on top to fit. Alternatively, floor-to-ceiling frameless shower enclosures give any bathroom an attractive contemporary edge.

Get creative with bespoke privacy glass

Privacy in your bathroom takes on more importance than in any other room in the house. For that reason, many designers and homeowners alike resort to full wooden doors and heavy blinds or curtains to make sure no one can ever see in. The downside, of course, is that this can make bathrooms rather dark and dingy.

The best way to increase natural light levels in your bathroom is to use more privacy glass on windows, doors and even shower cubicles. Frosted glass is a timeless favourite – not only does it obscure what you can see while still allowing light to filter through, it can be etched into attractive designs which add to the aesthetic appeal of you bathroom. Other options to experiment with include tinted glass, which adds a wash of colour.

If you really want to push the boat out, smart glass is a fantastic futuristic option. Turning transparent glass opaque when an electrical charge is applied, you could, for example, have a full smart glass door showing off your wonderful bathroom design when it is not in use. Then as soon as someone flicks on the light switch, the smart glass turns opaque, giving them the privacy they need.

Bespoke glass in unusual places

It is easy to think of glass in purely functional terms when designing interiors, a material you use in windows and for shower screens and so on. But glass brings an aesthetic value of its own and can create stunning effects when used in unusual and original ways.

For example, instead of tiling bathroom walls, think about creating features using glass panes. Combinations of frosted, mirrored and tinted glass can be used to achieve all sorts of amazing results, your imagination really is the only limit. Another great idea is to incorporate glass at floor level. Glass flooring can be combined with lighting to give your bathroom a relaxed uplit ambience, while using glass treads to build steps up to shower cubicles or hot tubs adds another intriguing touch.

If you’re looking for advice on how to create a Pinterest perfect bathroom with bespoke glass, Glass & Stainless have all the necessary experience and expertise. Get in touch today to see how we can help.

How To Install Skylights

If you are a keen on DIY and have a familiarity with carpentry, you might be thinking about how to install skylights. This can be a good way to keep down costs but you need to be confident in what you’re doing. If in doubt, get a professional to do the work.

How To Install Skylights

Choose where to place the skylight

Deciding which side of the roof to place the glass skylight on is a crucial decision as it will determine how much direct sunlight you are able to capture throughout the day. A south or west facing skylight will receive the greatest amount of sunlight and north or east the least. The former can be hugely beneficial during the colder winter months, but during the summer, you run the risk of the room heating up to an uncomfortable temperature. This can be avoided by adding remote control shades or blinds to your skylight.

Think ahead about how you’re going to install the skylight and try and avoid areas where electrics or plumbing are already present. Choose a point between rafters to avoid making significant structural changes.

 

Determine the pitch of the roof

Unless you’ve chosen a highly bespoke option, the vast majority of skylights are created for a set roof pitch. You will need to purchase one that matches the pitch of your roof in order to ensure a watertight finish. To make things easier, roof pitch is typically expressed as the number of inches the roof rises vertically for every 12 inches it extends horizontally along the roof’s run. The roof’s run is simply the distance from the edge of the roof to the point directly below the centre of the roof ridge. As an example, if a roof rises 4 inches for every 12 inches of run, it has a 4-in-12 pitch.

By using this ratio, you only need to measure a small section of the roof. If you can get into your attic, we would recommend that you measure the pitch of your roof from the inside. The lack of roof materials on the inside can actually help to give you a more accurate measurement.

First, measure and mark 12 inches on your level. Take the level and rest it directly underneath a roof rafter at the point at which it meets the wall, so that it is pointing into the room. Find the 12 inch mark on the level and then measure vertically up for this point to the roof rafter. This should then give you the number of inches the roof rises for every 12 inches of horizontal run.

 

Cut a space in the roof for the skylight

To make sure that you cut the hole for the skylight in exactly the right place, we would recommend marking each corner of the rectangle from the inside of the building. This is most easily down by inserting four screws that will then become visible when you remove the external roofing material. You should not just remove the roofing material within the defined area but also anything in the vicinity that could be easily damaged. Connect the marked corners with a chalk line.

When it comes to the actual cutting, we would recommend that you use a circular saw. Have someone else on end hand to catch any falling debris as you make the final cut. This debris might include any installation.

 

Build the supporting frame

In order to support the skylight in its position, you’re going to need to build a strong supporting frame. Cut sections of wood to fit the length of the rectangle hole, and nail them into place, ensuring that they are level. We would recommend that you insert the nails at angle for the greatest security. This is known as toenailing. Alternatively, you could screw the frame into place with L-frame brackets.

 

Prevent water leakage and drafts with a membrane

A waterproof membrane will help prevent moisture or wind entering your home or damaging the roof. Prior to fitting the membrane, remove any roofing felt from the area that it needs to cover. Starting from the bottom of the skylight, lay the membrane so that it reaches the very top of the skylight frame as well as extending onto the roof. Membranes are typically self-adhesive so be careful to avoid introducing any crinkles or air pockets as you lay it in place. Ensure that there is a sharp crease at the point where the roof meets the frame.

Around the corners, make sure that the membrane extends beyond the length of the frame. Right at the corner edge of the frame, where you want to try and get the membrane to lie flat around the corner, cut a 45 degree angle. Take the resulting flap and smoothly attach it to the side of the frame around the corner. Simply ensure that the remaining membrane is firmly attached to the roof.

Repeat on each side of the frame until it is entirely covered in membrane.

 

Add the flashing on top

On top of the membrane along the bottom edge of the frame, lay a strip of roofing material. Fit the flashing over the top, securing it onto the frame with roofing nails. You should be able to buy this to perfectly fit your skylight. This can then be covered with shingles, again attached with nails.

Up the side of the frame, lay single step pieces then a shingle over the top, and then repeat all the way up, keeping to this alternating pattern. The step pieces and shingles should be interwoven.

With the bottom and sides of the frame covered in step pieces and shingles, you just need install the flashing on the top edge (saddle flashing). Make sure that you slide it slightly underneath the roof underlay. You may need to cut a slit in the underlay in order to do this.

 

Insert the skylight

Slide the skylight on top of the covered wooden frame. We recommend that someone else stands on the inside of the roof to help you position it in place and prevent it from inadvertently falling through. Secure the skylight by inserting screws through the provided metal brackets and into the supporting frame that you’ve already assembled.

 

If you’re still not sure how to install skylights, at Glass and Stainless we can install your skylight as well as design and produce it. To discuss your specification, get in touch today.

3 Ways To Use An Opaque Glass Partition Wall

Here are our top 3 ways to use an opaque glass partition wall:

  1. To provide privacy whilst maintaining natural light
  2. To switch between privacy and transparency
  3. To create a blank canvas

Providing privacy whilst maintaining natural light with an opaque glass partition wall

With an opaque glass partition wall, you get the best of both worlds when it comes to privacy and light. Whichever style of opaque glass you choose to use, it will blur or distort any shapes placed behind it. You can do whatever you want behind that glass and nobody will be any the wiser. Light, including that all-important natural daylight, can still pass through the glass, illuminating the room beyond. The design possibilities are endless!

An increasingly popular design feature in hotels, but certainly suitable for the home as well, is the practice of separating the en-suite bathroom from the rest of the bedroom with an opaque glass partition wall. En-suites are often relatively small, windowless rooms in which you can easily feel closed-in or claustrophobic, especially if the room begins to heat and steam up. Having an opaque glass partition wall opens up the room by allowing natural light to flood in.

In an office, opaque glass walls are brilliant for creating private work spaces or meeting rooms that don’t feel dark and dingy. They even help solve that perennial issue of glare on computer screens.

As well as visually obscuring what’s going on beyond the glass, many opaque glass partition walls have sound insulation properties equal to that of a normal, solid partition wall.

Switching between privacy and transparency

With the advent of intelligent glass, also known as privacy or switchable glass, installing a opaque glass partition wall doesn’t have to mean permanently closing off an area. With just the flick of a switch, an electrical current is applied to the intelligent glass wall and the glass is transformed from opaque to completely transparent. Remove the electrical current again and the glass will revert to its opaque state.

As well as assisting with privacy, intelligent glass also comes with significant temperature control benefits. If the light levels within a room reach a certain level, sensors will detect that and automatically switch the glass to opaque, helping to keep temperatures low.

Creating a blank slate

The surface of an opaque glass partition wall is perfectly smooth and unblemished. This makes it ideal for projecting text or images onto. In a work environment, you could use an opaque glass partition wall in place of a projector screen for presentations in meetings, giving a sleeker and more impressive experience to clients. Back at home, you could turn an opaque glass partition wall into your very own home cinema. Simply sit back and relax as your favourite films, television shows and old family videos appear on your glass wall, free of any unfortunate dents or cracks.

Glass and Stainless can design and produce bespoke opaque glass partition walls, however you plan to use them. Contact us today to discuss your specification.

How To Install Glass Shower Door Handles

Glass shower door handles come in a whole range of styles and sizes. At the most basic level you need to decide whether or not to choose a set of back to back handles that work in pairs, or a single mount handle which can function on its own. You also have the choice of whether or not to have a hollow handle (tubular) or a solid one. Some people prefer the reassurance of a heavier handle whereas others prefer to not push as hard on the handle when it’s wet.

Shape wise, there is practically no limit. For example, you could choose square or circle, H-stye or arch. Some styles are specifically designed with ergonomics in mind for ease of use. Whatever shape of door handle you choose, you then need to consider the finish. The most commonly used options are matte, etched or high-shine.

One important point to bear in mind is that toughened glass cannot be cut. This means that your new shower door handles will need to fit in the same space as your previous ones.

Want to know how to install glass shower door handles? Read our hints and tips below.

Removing The Original Glass Shower Door Handles

Before you install a new glass shower door handle, you will need to remove whatever is already in place. For a single handle:

  • Firstly, you will need to remove the end cap. This is simply the small piece of metal that sits on the inside surface of the door, holding the handle in place. It is approximately ½ inch in size.
  • Initially, the end cap will probably be too stiff to loosen by hand so we would recommend that you use a set of pliers. Simply turn the metal in a counterclockwise direction. Once it is loose enough, you can switch to using your hands, ready to catch the metal which it falls.
  • With the end cap removed the handle will simply slide out of the hole.

How To Install The New Glass Shower Door Handles

Before fitting any new shower door handles, we would always recommend that you give the glass a bit of a clean. Dirt and limescale can easily build up around a door handle, and there will likely be residue from your previous handle. Just use a cloth and a limescale remover to get the job done.

For a double sided handle:

  • Firstly, check whether there is an obvious difference between the two handles. This may indicate that one is meant for you use on the inside surface of the shower e.g. it is designed for greater grip.
  • Decide where the natural and functional position of the exterior door handle is, and line it up with the pre-existing holes in the glass.
  • To help protect the glass and form a seal, some shower door handles come with small rubber washers. These will need to fitted to end of the handle shaft.
  • Once the exterior door handle is in place you’ll want to keep it secure using masking tape.
  • Line up the interior glass shower door handle with the exterior one and screw them both into place. You can then remove the masking tape.

For a single handle, the same principles apply but you will be attaching an end cap in place of an inner handle. To get a tight fit, you’ll probably want to use pliers again. However, you need to be careful that you don’t scratch or otherwise damage the metal or glass. To help prevent this, we would recommend covering the end cap in a piece of cloth.

Glass and Stainless offer a range of glass shower door handles that perfectly suit our frameless glass shower doors. Contact us today to discuss your requirements.

How To Install A Sliding Glass Shower Door (With Frame)

Given the choice between a shower curtain and a glass shower door, we would always recommend the latter. From a practical perspective, they are for more waterproof than a shower curtain as the entire space is sealed shut with no gaps. A glass shower door is easy to maintain, and you don’t need to worry about refitting it every time you want to clean it. If we’ve got you convinced, here is our guide on how to install a glass shower door with frame.

How To Install A Sliding Glass Shower Door (With Frame)

Step 1: Measuring Up

  • As with most DIY projects, the first step of installing a glass shower door is to take accurate measurements. Before you go ahead and buy anything, you need to be sure that it will fit the space you’ve got. Make sure that you measure both the height and width.
  • When buying your glass shower door, make sure that it comes with matching metal tracks, rollers and wall screws.
  • Be aware that the tracks in many shower door kits are slightly longer than needed. You will simply needed to cut them to size.

Step 2: Making Your Marks

  • Before you begin drilling it is important to make clear and accurate marks. These will help you keep everything straight and even, giving a more professional look once completed.
  • You’ll want the glass shower door to rest in the centre of the shower tray lip, so make the centrepoint at regular intervals along it, a minimum of three times.
  • Most models of glass shower door frame columns come with the screw hole pre-cut. You will simply need to line the column up with your central lip markings and make a mark through the hole.
  • If you’re not sure if your markings are perfectly aligned, you could use a vertical spirit level to double check.
  • To avoid permanently marking any tiles or other material, we would recommend that you stick a bit of masking tape over the area. Leave this in place as it will come in handy later.

Step 3: Applying The Silicone Seal

  • The first part that you’re going to install is the threshold.
  • To affix it to the shower door tray lip, we recommend that you use a silicone sealant. It is both waterproof and has a good resistance to mold.
  • Apply the silicone sealant to the flat underside of the threshold using a caulking gun.
  • When moving it into place, make sure that you line it up perfectly with the marks you’d already made. Once you’ve got it how you want press down firmly.
  • For the perfect seal, dip your fingers in some soapy water and then smooth over the bulging sealant, flattening it out.
  • You will need to work relatively quickly as the sealant only takes fives minutes or so to start drying.

Step 4: Drilling Holes For The Columns

  • Drill into the tiles at the points that you have previously marked
  • Make sure you’re using the right drill bit for the job. A ceramic drill bit will typically be made of ground tungsten carbide or diamond, and should be used slowly and steadily.
  • Remember the masking tape that you left in place from early on? By drilling through that instead of bare tile, you minimise the chance of any costly cracks. The tape can also give you a bit more grip than the smooth surface of the tile so you’re less likely to slip with the drill. You can remove the tape once the drilling is done.

Step 5: Inserting The Wall Anchors

  • Use a hammer firmly push the wall anchors into the newly created holes.
  • Wall anchors are used to create a surface onto which the screws can grip.

Step 6: Screw The Column Into Place

  • Hold the column up against the wall so that the pre-cut holes in the metal line up with the wall anchors, and the bottom matches up with the threshold.
  • Use a screwdriver with the provided screws to secure the column in place.
  • Apply silicone sealant with a caulking gun on either side of the column to create a watertight seal.
  • Repeat on the other side.

Step 7: Adding Support To The Top

  • Most glass shower door kits come with a crossmember to attach the two columns together at the top.
  • In most cases, they can simply be fitted by clipping it on at the top. If your columns aren’t evenly lined up you may encounter problems at this stage.

Step 8: Fitting The Glass Shower Door Itself

  • Roller installation varies from manufacturer to manufacturer so please follow the instructions they provide. Typically however, they will simply slide into the threshold.
  • Double check that you’ve got the door the right way round with the door facing outwards before you fit it.
  • Line up the glass panel with the rollers and slowly lower into position. Give the door a few experimental slides to ensure that the movement is smooth.

Finally, we would recommend that you wait 24 hours before using the shower in order to give the silicone sealant time to completely dry. You want to be sure that your glass shower door is as watertight as possible.

Glass and Stainless can design, install and advise on any sliding glass shower door. Contact us today to discuss your requirements.

How To Install A Glass Splashback

Glass splashbacks are a brilliant way of adding a bold splash of colour to any kitchen. They come with the added benefit of having a highly reflective surface which light can easily bounce off, making a room feel bigger and lighter. Here’s how to install a glass splashback in 5 easy steps.

Remember, when working with glass you should always take extra care. Don’t leave the glass splashback somewhere where it could be knocked or damaged. At Glass and Stainless we only use toughened glass which is one of the safest forms out there, but it always pays to be careful. Toughened glass is four times stronger than annealed glass but unlike the latter, it cannot be cut once formed. That’s why Glass and Stainless create each glass splashback bespoke to your needs.

How To Install A Glass Splashback

Step 1: Preparing The Surface

Before you try to install your glass splashback you’ll want to double check that the wall is flat, level and dry. We would also recommend that you give the wall a thorough cleaning. Glass is obviously transparent so you don’t want any unsightly marks or smudges showing through.

Step 2: Measuring Up The Space

The vast majority of glass splashbacks only cover a section of the wall, directly behind the hob. From an aesthetic perspective, you’re going to want to ensure that the splashback is fitted central to the hob rather than offset to one side. Getting this right is all in the measurements. Measure the width of the hob itself and then halve that number. This is the centre point of the hob and you should mark it with a pencil. You will also need to mark out the span of the glass splashback, with the width evenly split either side of the hob centre point.

Step 3: Applying The Silicone Sealant

Before applying any silicone sealant, we would recommend that you protect the kitchen top surface as much as possible. This will save you a lot of time on cleaning up later on. For example, you could place a strip of masking tape along the length of the marked out space. Leave a few millimetres gap from the wall though in order to apply the silicone sealant.

When it comes to installing a glass splashback you should only use a clear silicone, not a white one. The transparent nature of glass means that any other type of silicone will simply ruin the look. When applying the silicone to the back of the glass splashback itself, make sure that the front is resting on a clear, clean surface that won’t scratch the glass surface.

First, apply the silicone sealant in a thin strip in the space where the kitchen wall meets the surface top, within the marked out area. With that done you can turn your attention to the glass itself. Apply a thin beaded line on the back of the glass around the edges. Leave a bit of space between silicone and edge however, as you don’t want the silicone to squish out.

Step 4: Putting The Glass Splashback In Place

To fit the glass splashback, work from the bottom onwards. Line up the bottom edge of the splashback with the silicone sealant that you’ve placed at the junction of wall and surface. Double check that the glass is lined up with pencil marks from earlier. From there, ease the rest of the glass splashback upwards whilst pressing it firmly onto the wall.

Step 5: Wait For The Silicone To Dry

We recommend that you leave the silicone to dry for 24 hours before touching it again. This will ensure that the silicone is dry and the glass splashback is secure.

Glass and Stainless can design, install and advise on any glass splashback tiles. Contact us today to discuss how we can help you.

 

Planning Your Glass Garden Room Extension

Glass garden room extensions, also known as glass boxes, are an ultra-modern way of opening your home up to the great outdoors. Large frameless glass panels will give you stunning panoramic views, supported by sympathetic aluminium frames. By adding sliding or bifold doors, you can easily step out onto a patio or into the garden.

Striking to look at but also eminently practical, a glass garden room extension can add real value to a property. Having a sheltered living space is ideal for evening dining when you might want some additional warmth or shelter without losing the sensation of being outside. Equally, it could provide protection from the sun on a hot summer’s day.

How is a glass garden room different from a conservatory?

The primary difference between a garden room and conservatory is how substantial it is. A conservatory is built in a similar manner to a standard extension as the intention is that it will be used year round, just like any other room of the house. You might use it in the same way as a living room. A conservatory will require foundations, damp proofing and double glazing. In addition, there is a high ongoing cost due to the expense of heating a conservatory.

In contrast, a glass garden extension is considered to be more of an enclosed section of garden, rather than another room. It feels as much part of the garden as it does the home, particularly when the doors are fully open. There is no requirement here for a percentage of the structure to be made of brick. Instead, you can use floor to ceiling glass with minimal supporting framework to open up your views as much as possible.

Unless the glass garden room is of an unusual height or close to a boundary, you shouldn’t require planning permission. Furthermore, it can typically be erected in a couple of days.  

What are the benefits of a glass garden room extension?

The most obvious advantage of a glass box extension is that you receive the maximum amount of light possible. Aside from the slight frame and any blinds that you choose to install, there is nothing to block the light. Sat inside, you could truly forget that you’re not outside.

Whatever the weather, a glass garden room can offer protection. If you’re finding the hot summer sun to be overwhelming or are concerned about burning, such a structure will provide you with a measure of relief, particularly if you add retractable blinds for added shade. Equally, a sudden downpour shouldn’t keep you from enjoying your garden.

From a design perspective, aluminium frames are available in a range of colours to match the architecture of your home. A powder coating will ensure a stunning and even finish.

At Glass and Stainless, we design and build glass garden rooms in line with your specification and preferred design. If you have any questions about what is possible, do please get in touch.

What sort of glass should you use?

Whilst you can just use standard safety glass for a garden room extension, there are optional extras for you to consider. For example, if overlooking neighbours make you feel uncomfortable, you could choose to use privacy glass. At the flick of a switch, the transparent glass will turn opaque and shield you from view whilst still allowing a degree of light through. Self-cleaning glass is commonly used in this situation thanks to its ability to use UV rays to break down any dirt present on the panels.

Glass and Stainless can design, install and advise on any glass garden room extension. Contact us today to discuss your requirements.

Choosing The Ideal Glass Canopy For Your Front Door

Glass canopies are brilliant for giving visitors an excellent first impression of your building, whether it be a commercial premises or your own lovely home. They’ll be particularly thankful when the weather is awful and they want to shelter from the rain or hail. Meanwhile, you aren’t left rushing to answer the door as quickly as possible and can take your time instead. As well as providing shelter, a glass canopy can also be a stunning architectural feature. It’s just case of finding the right design. Here are some of our best tips for choosing the ideal glass canopy for your front door.

Why choose a glass canopy for your front door?

When it comes to an entranceway canopy, we would almost always recommend using glass. This durable yet incredibly elegant material suits a wide variety of architectural styles. Unlike a solid metal, brick or timber canopy, an abundance of light is still able to reach the covered space. This stops the entrance from feeling or looking enclosed, which can be quite off-putting to visitors. You could use plastic instead of glass but the overall effect tends to be diminished.

Glass is an easy material to clean and maintain. You simply need to use a cleaning solution and cloth. Your regular window cleaner may even be able to do it as part of their round.

Our glass canopies are made from toughened glass, also known as safety glass. In the unlikely event that the glass smashes, any resulting shards will be small and have rounded edges. This will vastly reduce the chance of injury.

What type of glass?

When it comes to choosing the glass canopy for your front door, your options are near endless. We can cut glass bespoke to your design and requirements. Coloured glass can be used to brilliant effect in a glass canopy as the passing light throws gorgeous colour onto your entrance.

If blocking out a hot summer sun is your primary concern, we would recommend choosing a frosted glass. Light is still able to pass through but the shaded area remains cooler. This is particularly useful if your front door contains a glass panel and the hallway is prone to heating up.

What style of canopy?

Crucial to the success of your canopy will be its shape and pitch. We would always recommend that you choose a pitched canopy, even if the angle isn’t huge. A flat roof can be problematic as there is simply nowhere for any water or detritus to drain. Pools of muddy water and piles of leaves begin to build-up and need to be removed by hand.

A curved, convex glass provides excellent drainage and also directs the glass to the left and right of the doorway. If you choose a glass canopy that slopes downwards away from the building, you run the risk of directing water into the path of anyone approaching the front door. Furthermore, if you have a wooden door it is worth considering whether any water is likely to gather close to the door and pose a risk of rot.

Choosing the right frame for your glass is the key to nailing a specific aesthetic. Stainless steel will give your entrance a sharp-edged and contemporary look whereas timber will suggest a more rustic vibe. Often, people like to match their canopy structure with the material and colour used in their front door or window. At Glass and Stainless we can create bespoke canopy structures that perfectly match the architectural style of your building. For example, we could add lots of curved metal flourishes in order to complement an art deco building.

Glass and Stainless can help you create the ideal glass canopy for your front door. Contact us today to discuss your requirements.

Types Of Glass Flooring: Finding The Perfect Finish

Glass is glass right? Wrong! There is a variety of types of glass flooring out there for you to choose from, and each is going to give you a slightly different look. From the opacity of the glass to its shape and colour, the options are numerous. To help you make some important decisions, we’ve pulled together a list of elements to consider.

Types of glass flooring

When it comes to structural glass flooring, your two main choices are toughened and laminated glass. Toughened glass is roughly five times stronger than standard glass, thanks to the unique process by which it is made. During its creation, it is heated to 650°C and then swiftly cooled. Toughened glass is incredibly hard to smash but should it do so, the glass crumbles rather than shatter into shards.

Laminated glass, meanwhile, contains a thin layer of plastic. Should the glass shatter, the shards stick to this resin layer and prevent them from flying through the air. The shards themselves are smaller and rounded than standard annealed glass. Adding plastic to the centre of the glass necessarily makes it thicker, resulting in a great insulator.

Depending on your preferences, you might want to choose a low iron glass for you structural glass floor. Most types of glass flooring have a slight blue-green tint to them due to the presence of iron within the glass. Iron is necessary to the creation of glass but the levels can be lowered to give a clearer glass without the tint.

Whichever glass you choose, ensure that it has been subject to architectural testing. Any supplier, such as Glass and Stainless, should be able to confirm this.

Shapes of glass flooring

Glass is an incredibly versatile material which can be cut bespoke to your needs, whether that is a traditional square or rectangle or something a bit different, like a circle or triangle. With more unusual shapes you will need to consider the distribution of the glass’s weight and how it will be supported. We are more than willing to provide you with advice on this subject.

If you wish to create a grid-like effect with multiple smaller glass panels, we would recommend that you choose glass pavers. If you want a sleeker look with large sheets of glass, possibly even just one, you will need bespoke cast glass. Ensure that any panes aren’t so large that they become unwieldy and difficult to install.

Opacity of glass flooring

Having a glass floor doesn’t necessarily mean that you have to sacrifice your privacy, in either the upper or lower space. You can choose whether you have a transparent or opaque glass. With an opaque glass, light can still pass between the spaces but people won’t be able to make out distinctive shapes. Sandblasting and acid etching are both options for creating the distinctive frosted effect.

Safety of glass flooring

The smooth surface of glass can be a concern for the more clumsy among us! Thankfully, anti-slip technology exists to make structural glass floors more practical. A common approach is to acid etch a subtle design into the top of the glass. We would certainly recommend that you apply an anti-slip surface to any external glass flooring. Inside the house or commercial space, we would suggest that you use it in areas with high traffic, such as corridors. Kitchens are another area to consider given the number of spillages.

Glass and Stainless can advise you on different types of glass flooring for your situation. Contact us today to discuss your requirements.