What Kind of Glass Is Used in Glass Flooring?
Designing for the Safety and Appearance of Your Glass Flooring
Glass is a highly customizable material, but when it comes to the kind of glass used in glass flooring, safety and international building codes make the choice for you. Discover what type of glass is used in all properly designed glass flooring, why it’s the glass of choice, and what design aspects you can control.
What Kind of Glass Should I Use for My Glass Floor?
When designing glass floors, your glass manufacturer and engineer should use laminated glass. This will ensure your flooring is fully in compliance with all safety and building code regulations.
Laminated glass gives you the durability and breakage resistance you’d want in glass flooring, as well as the peace of mind regarding liability.
5 Design Features to Consider with Laminated Glass Flooring
Glass Flooring Thickness
In general, expect glass flooring panels to be 1 ¼” thick.
However, your glass manufacturer and engineer will create laminated glass flooring panels specific to your project. These will be both appropriately thick for your design and fully in compliance with international building codes and ASTM glass flooring standards.
The necessary thickness of a glass floor will vary based on several factors:
- How much weight is expected on that flooring
- The span of individual glass panels
- The engineering of the support system around the glass
For exterior glass floors, weight considerations include:
- The maximum number of people expected at any given time on the flooring
- Outdoor furniture
- Grills, rain barrels, or other objects in that outdoor space
Glass Floors and Safety Design
Your laminated glass flooring panels should be engineered with failure redundancy built into the design.
With glass flooring, safety should always be your number one concern. While breakage of any glass floor is highly unlikely, proper failure redundancy is still necessary.
Given that, every glass flooring panel should be designed in a three-ply system. This essentially means every single panel is actually three pieces of glass together.
This system is a safeguard against failure. If any individual piece of glass does crack, shatter, or otherwise fail, the floor will still be intact. The remaining two pieces of glass can safely bear the structural load.
Glass Floors and Aesthetic Design
When choosing the kind of glass to use in your glass flooring, safety always comes first. Once those considerations are taken care of, then you can move to aesthetic choices.
Because of the customizable nature of glass, you have many design options.
- The type and appearance of anti-slip surface
- The level of desired transparency (from clear to frosted)
- The color of the glass panels
- Textures or patterns incorporated into the flooring
- The size, shape, and thickness of the individual panels
Insulated Glass Flooring Panels
If heat loss or retention is of any importance in your project, talk to your glass manufacturer and engineer about insulated glass panels.
These energy-efficient insulated panels offer great functionality, increase the comfort of the living space below, help you save on heating and cooling costs, and are an overall more eco-friendly product.
Insulated glass panels can also keep the space below at a more constant temperature. If the space is a wine cellar, for example, that can help preserve the integrity of the product below the flooring.
Waterproof Glass Floor Panels
If the space directly below the glass flooring is livable space, talk to your manufacturer and engineer about creating a fully waterproof floor. This is especially relevant for outdoor glass flooring, which will be subject to rain, snow, sleet, and other moisture.
If your flooring is simply water resistant, that livable space underneath could eventually sustain water damage.
Interested in Adding Glass Flooring to Your Home or Business?
Looking to add glass floors in a new build or renovation? Have any questions about glass flooring?
Feel free to contact us.
We’re Jockimo, custom manufacturers of architectural glass products, including flooring, antique mirrors, and countertops. We’re glass experts with decades of experience, and we’re always happy to answer your questions!