The maximum number of panes in a glass unit is not regulated. Nevertheless, the insulating glass unit with a large number of glasses has its disadvantages.
When you increase the number of sheets of Glass, the construction's weight increases, and the window's light transmission decreases; the price, of course, also increases.
The weight of its panes determines the weight of the insulating glass unit. Standard single-glazed unit (2x4 mm) weighs about 20 kg / sq.m.
Double glazing (3x4mm) weighs 30kg/m2. It is therefore easy to calculate the weight of 1 mm of Glass with an area of 1 square meter as 2.5 kg.
Double glazing or single glazing
Which is better, 3 or 2 panes of Glass?
Glasses thinner than 4 mm are not used for residential glazing due to their high fragility. However, the less the weight of the glazing unit, the fewer fittings wear, and the better the window's service life. More in detail in the article: Too much weight is the reason for window breakage. How to finde
According to laboratory tests, constructions using a thick plate or laminated Glass are suitable for soundproofing.
Low emissivity - the ability to reflect thermal radiation. The lower the emissivity, the better the material reflects the energy and is, therefore, a better insulator.
The characteristic "Adequate heat transfer resistance" - the inverse of the emissivity coefficient - is used. The higher the heat transfer resistance - the better the heat-insulating capacity of the glass unit.
There are low-emission glasses with hard and soft coatings.
Low-emissivity K-glass (hard-coated Glass) can be used coated outward as it is resistant to weathering and abrasion. It can be tempered.
Low-emissivity I-glass (soft-coated Glass) is used only with the coating inside the package - it is not resistant to external influences. Still, it has better insulating properties (almost 1.5 times better).
The glass panes in the window package are labeled: 4k and 4i, respectively, where 4 is the glass thickness value in millimeters.
Soft low-emission coating (i-glass) is often used to manufacture heat-saving and energy-saving glass units.
Low-emission Glass (Low Emission) with a special heat-reflective coating works on the principle of a thermos: it insulates from the outside environment while maintaining the temperature inside.
The coating applied to the glass surface retains its transparency and, unlike films, cannot peel off. The layer itself can be used:
- on the outside Glass (inside the camera) - for better heat reflection to the outside;
- on the inner Glass (inside the chamber) - for better heat reflection into the room.
For better thermal insulation of the glass unit today, special heat-reflecting glass with low heat emission (Low E) and low emission, which we have already mentioned. The most common type of low-emission Glass is with a soft silver coating. It is designated by the letter "I" in the glazing formula.
How to distinguish energy-saving Glass from ordinary Glass
A double-glazed window, one of which is low-emission, is better than a triple-glazed window according to the primary parameter "thermal transmittance." The higher the value, the better the construction protects from the cold.
Thermal insulation characteristics of the window units with the typical glass filling are given in the table below. You can read more details about the thermal insulation properties of the insulating glass units at the following link: thermal insulation of insulating glass units.
With the advent of low-emission T-glass, the heat loss through the windows has decreased significantly. Therefore, the expressions "warm windows," "warm glass unit," and " heat-saving glass unit " is used in everyday life.
Windows with heat-saving Glass can be recommended for all heat-loving owners.
However, what to do if you feel excessive heat in the air on hot days? Such a room needs special glazing to reflect the sun's thermal energy outward.
Light transmission, protection from the sun and UV radiation
The desire to make windows as insulating as possible can lead to the fact that the transparency of the structure will be lost.
Each additional sheet of Glass reduces the transparency of your window by an average of 10%. The Glass also affects light transmission (low-emissivity Glass is worse than regular Glass, and special enlightened Glass is better than standard Glass).
High light transmission is an essential factor for everyday living. However, solar energy enters the house with sunlight, disrupting the indoor microclimate, and adversely affecting interior decor and furniture.
Sunshades and insulated glass units
Insulating glass units in which a thin layer of titanium oxide is sprayed create a barrier to the sun's heat waves. The outside of the Glass has a light mirror-like gloss, but on the inside, it is as transparent as ordinary Glass.
The crucial role of solar control glass:
- Reduces heating of the room by the sun
- Burnout of furniture and interiors is reduced
The Glass determines the solar protection properties of the insulating glass unit with solar energy protection, which reduces the "solar factor."
The solar factor (solar factor) is indicated by a "g" in the documentation and reveals the percentage of the solar energy that passes through the insulating glass unit.
The lower the solar factor, the better protection from the sun the insulating glass unit will provide. For example, a solar factor of 40% indicates that only 40% of the solar energy passes through the glass pane.
The value of this parameter is directly related to the degree of protection from ultraviolet radiation. Sunshields with a low solar factor are installed for rooms with works of art to avoid fading from UV radiation. Unlike tinted Glass, the new generation of sunglasses is transparent to visible light. Basement window replacement
Energy-saving glazing with multifunctional Glass
The next stage in developing the technology was to combine two properties in the sputtering at once: heat saving and sun protection. The so-called multifunctional energy-saving double-glazed windows became a successful solution - transparent for light and impermeable for heat and cold.
The presence of double coating - titanium and silver - gives a double effect: energy saving occurs both in summer and winter:
- In summer, there is no need for additional air conditioning.
- In winter, no heating costs are wasted.
Find out how much plastic windows with multifunctional glass unit costs right now using the online calculator of plastic windows.
Tinted Glass is also often used in the glazing of homes, storefronts, in the construction of office partitions indoors, and in tinting car windows. As a rule, one mass-painted Glass is used, or more rarely, two panes as part of a single or double-glazed unit. This way, you can achieve the desired degree of decorative and protective effect.
For what purposes tinted (colored) Glass is used in insulating glass units:
- Exterior glazing design following the architectural design;
- Protection against peeping;
- Internal shading of the room.
The required color solution, in addition to mass-painted Glass, can be found by gluing a tinting or mirror film.
To ensure high safety performance: protection from impact, breakage, etc., particular types of glass units are used - shock-proof.
Resistance to impact can be provided by using one of the types of protective Glass in the glass unit:
- Tempered Glass - Glass with 2-3 times better impact resistance than standard Glass;
- Laminated Glass - Glass with an anti-shock film glued to one of the surfaces;
- Reinforced Glass - Glass with a steel mesh inside;
- Laminated triplex glass - several layers of sheet glass bonded together by a polyvinyl-butyl film or resin (in the first case, we are talking about film lamination of the triplex, in the second - liquid).
Speaking about the differences in the production of laminated Glass, the following should be taken into account:
- Since one of the stages of manufacturing triplex by film lamination method is heating up to the temperature of 80-90 degrees Celsius, it is not recommended to use low-emission glasses in the composition of film triplex (heating can spoil the coating). However, the production of low-emission triplex by liquid lamination technology is possible.
Unique properties of double-glazed windows
The glass panes connected hermetically in a double-glazed unit allow the glazing qualitatively new characteristics. From a practical point of view, such a design is more convenient because there is no need to wash the glasses from the inside; they remain clean during the whole service life of the products, which is about 60 years for modern plastic windows in moderate climate zone.
Modern glass production technology introduces new types of glazing through various decorative, protective, and physical properties. In particular, the development of self-cleaning insulating glass units is considered one of the most promising.
Self-cleaning double-glazed windows have a hydrophobic coating that keeps Glass clean for much longer than ordinary Glass, thanks to its ability to repel water molecules.
Heating double-glazed windows or double-glazed windows with electric heating of glasses - double-glazed windows in which the special multilayer glass with a structured conducting layer is established. When current flows in the conductor, the Glass can generate heat up to +50 0C. Read more.
Fire-resistant glazing - or fire-resistant glazing, is a construction involving laminated Glass and fire-resistant interlayers. Such a layer at high temperatures forms a dense solid foam that protects against the spread of the flame by holding glass fragments in place and preventing heat radiation from the seat of the fire.
Decorative glazing - inside the glass pane for visual division into sections can be built in spandrels (glazing bars). For connoisseurs of the patterned pattern, the Glass can be decorated with ornaments and designs in the Tiffany stained glass style.
Double-glazed windows with built-in blinds are mainly demanded in medical institutions, with high hygiene requirements due to sanitary norms. Conventional blinds are not suitable for indoor furnishing - they are not protected from static dust, unlike built-in blinds. The sealed chamber in the glass unit serves as a reliable isolator from contamination, while the louvers are controlled from the outside.
Chamber size and gas in the insulating glass unit
The size of the chamber - the distance between the panes in the glazing unit - also influences its properties. What this chamber is filled with - air or inert gas - also affects the thermal insulation (see the results of tests of double-glazed windows with argon).
It is considered that there is a vacuum inside the glazing unit, which is wrong because, in this case, the glazing unit would burst right after coming out of the conveyor under the influence of atmospheric pressure.
In fact, inside the insulating glass unit is regular (dried) air or a particular inert gas.
Some observations demonstrate an increase in thermal insulation when the width of the chamber is increased, but with little difference in temperature between the panes confining the section. A vast distance between the panes of Glass is preferable when this chamber is the second in a double-glazed unit, that is, closer to the room.
It is adequate to fill the chamber with gas denser than air for better insulation. In particular, argon injection increases the insulating glass unit's insulating properties. Read more: Why do you need gas in the insulating glass unit?
Spacers in the insulating glass unit
The spacers separating the glasses in a glazing unit perform several functions at the same time:
- form a heat-insulating air chamber,
- silica gel filled into the frame dehumidifies the air inside the room,
- decorative - one of several colors can be chosen.
Distance frames differ in type and material they are made—the most common: plastic, aluminum, combined (TGI).
Profile systems have removable glazing beads, allowing partial window or door unit disassembly. Thanks to this, it is possible to replace the insulating glass unit in the window in case of damage or improve the product's thermal characteristics. Such repair is much easier and more economical than replacing the entire structure, which is often unnecessary. The possibility of replacement is provided for all types of windows of any profile systems - plastic, aluminum, and wood. Removing the old insulating glass unit and installing a new one does not take much time and does not require complete disassembly of the window unit or sash.
Window manufacturers benefit from the fact that people who turn to them for help will replace the entire structure. However, such a need arises in case of a severe violation of the original geometry of the frame or significant damage to the profile. This is most often observed:
- in the case of substantial foundation subsidence;
- due to a breach of the supporting structures on the lower floors;
- as a result of an attempted burglary;
- after an explosion both inside and outside the premises;
- as a result of natural depressurization (glazing gradually loses its properties when used for a long time).
Usually, in such cases, specialists come on-site and assess the condition of the frames and profile. However, the task is greatly simplified if the Glass is broken due to impact. In this situation, the edges often retain the same geometry, enough to replace the insulating glass unit.
Insulating glass units are replaced because of mechanical damage and depressurization. However, in some cases, window owners are no longer satisfied with the level of thermal or sound insulation of these products. In such situations, it is more practical to limit oneself to the replacement of insulating glass units and to improve the characteristics of window or door units at minimum cost.
Some window owners, to save money, want to limit themselves to minimal repairs. However, in the case of mechanical damage, which does not have a thorough character, they wonder how possible to replace the Glass in the insulating glass unit? In principle, there is a workable way to perform this procedure. However, replacing the entire insulating glass unit is more advantageous when performing such a service by hired specialists. This is because the technology of installing new Glass is quite labor-intensive, and professionals will include the time spent in the bill. Therefore, it is more practical to take the chance and install a new and improved model.
What kind of double-glazed windows can be chosen
There are no fundamental restrictions when choosing new models. For example, you can use all existing types of insulating Glass for replacement. This will not prevent their installation in the soft opening. The only mandatory criterion is that the width of the insulating glass units must not exceed the depth of the mounting groove in the plastic profiles. Otherwise, their installation is excluded. At the moment, several models with different properties can be used for replacement.
These models are made with glasses with a special metalized coating, which perfectly retains heat in the interior. They come in one- or two-chambered models and are compatible with all types of profile systems.
If the windows face the south or southeast side, it is advisable to protect them from the sun's rays. The easiest way is with double-glazed windows with a protective layer. It can be:
Both types of coating have almost no effect on the light transmission capacity of the windows and effectively protect against both overheating and the consequences of UV rays. There is also solar-control glazing with a blackout function, often installed in bedrooms.
The most popular and effective double-glazed windows work all year round. In winter, they reduce heat leakage; in summer, they protect from overheating and help save on air conditioning. The double-sided efficiency of these glazing units is provided by an invisible selective coating called multifunctional.
For private cottages, apartments on the first and second floors, and premises with children, it is recommended to replace ordinary double-glazed windows with unbreakable models. They are made using triplex, tempered, or reinforced Glass. For burglary protection, toughened Glass is installed on the outside, and for child safety - on the inside. When establishing such double-glazed windows, it may be necessary to strengthen the fittings that hold the active sashes.
Serves to darken the internal premises and decorate window openings. Painted-in-mass glasses are used for their manufacture. However, they are not recommended for use on sunny sides of buildings. Glasses dyed in mass quickly absorb thermal energy; the windows are strongly heated.
They recommended sun protection, facade decoration, and privacy. They have another name - reflective. Glass, for them, is made with selective technology. Mirrored glass windows can also be colored. In contrast to the mass-painted glass models, they are not heated in direct sunlight.
These double-glazed windows can be made using different technologies and materials. Popularly used are models with a decorative layout, effectively dividing light openings into separate segments. Stained glass windows are represented by several modifications, the production of which uses natural colored Glass and polymer films.
The window repair algorithm depends on the degree of damage and the individual features of the construction. It includes obligatory all cases and private moments applicable in unique situations. This work does not represent anything complicated for specialists, so some potential customers decide to do the replacement independently. Despite the apparent simplicity, an independent repair can fail. The reason is the lack of experience.
To insure yourself against the loss of time and money, you should not test your abilities in a new kind of activity. It is better to call a master and gain experience by watching his work. The sequence of actions when replacing the glazing unit is as follows:
- Call a specialist.
- A specialist examines the window or door unit and determines the extent of the damage.
- Taking measurements (height, width, thickness);
- Ordering a new insulating glass unit.
- Waiting from 1 to 6 days.
- Delivery and installation of the insulating glass unit.
- Inspection and adjustment of the window.
Depending on the circumstances and the type of repair, it may be necessary to cover the opening with a film temporarily. Sometimes, the technician makes a template on the spot so that a new insulating glass unit can be made according to this template in the workshop. This is required when replacing double-glazed windows of complex shapes, including mullioned (radius) models.
Replacement of double-glazed window depending on the window type
You can install a new model in any window: plastic, wood, or aluminum. Removing the old insulating glass unit from the window opening is a technologically accessible procedure. Its complexity depends on the material from which the profile system is made to assemble the windows.
Replacement of PVC windows
This procedure is available for window and door units assembled from plastic profiles. The glazing units in such structures are held in place by glazing beads with elastic seals. They snap into the grooves and can be removed at any time. The process of removing the old insulating glass unit and installing the new one in active or passive sashes consists of the following steps:
- Removing glazing beads one by one - in a specific sequence, all the pressure bars are removed. And they are released in pairs - first the long, then the short.
- Removal of the old insulating glass unit from the light aperture is held in place by straightening plates. These spacers give the glazing unit the correct position and must be removed from the active or passive sash.
- I was cleaning the profiles on the inside of the soft opening.
- Install the new insulating glass unit in the window using new or previously removed straightening plates.
- It was fixing the structure with glazing beads, which can be either old or new. This depends on the thickness of the ordered insulating glass unit.
When replacing, installing new hinges with increased load capacity may be necessary. This is necessary when the insulating glass unit is made with the triplex, expanding the product's weight. Reinforced fittings are required if the old hinges cannot bear the new sash's importance. It is often needed when the triplex is on both sides of the glazing unit, or the soft opening has a large area.
Replacement of aluminum windows
Structurally, door and window units assembled from aluminum systems do not differ from plastic ones. As a consequence, the replacement of insulating glass units is performed according to a similar algorithm. One fundamental difference is that aluminum glazing beads and sealing circuits are dismantled and installed separately. Otherwise, the replacement procedure is identical to installing the insulating glass unit in a plastic window.
The replacement is carried out outside the building when repairing solid facade glazing. Such work is carried out using special equipment (auto tower) or industrial climbers. This affects the cost of replacement. During the repair, it is recommended to check the airtight circuits' state immediately. If they lose elasticity and are covered with microcracks, it is advisable to replace them.
Replacement of wooden windows
Despite the renewal of the joinery design, replacing the glass unit in a wooden window is most difficult. This is due to the peculiarities of fixing glazing beads and sealing the perimeter of the light aperture. Therefore, replacing the insulating glass unit in a wooden window takes more time. The process consists of the same basic steps and is supplemented by sealing the outer side of the insulating glass unit with transparent silicone. This sealant is also used when fixing glazing beads on the new insulating glass unit.
Another speed of replacement depends on the reliability of the paint coating. When removing glazing beads, which are usually nailed, in a hurry, you can damage the decorative layer. To maintain the aesthetic appeal of the window, act carefully and without haste. During replacement, you also need to clean the inside of the soft opening from the remnants of the old silicone. This can take time because sometimes, the cured sealant does not peel well from the wooden surface.
Replacing a single-glazed window with a double-glazed window
Replacing single-chamber models with two-chamber models was in demand before the advent of selective Glass with an energy-saving effect. Such window modernization allowed the windows to reduce heat leakage. After all, it is through the light apertures that most energy is lost. Currently, single-chamber selective glazing is more effective than conventional double-chamber glazing. As a consequence, the area of application of massive models is narrowed. Nevertheless, it is enough for regions with moderate winters to equip the windows with multifunctional double-glazed windows.
Today, such a replacement is appropriate in one case - when it is necessary to improve the soundproofing properties of windows. In these situations, twin-chamber models are more effective than single-chamber. They detain sound waves better by at least 30 percent and are recommended for windows in noisy streets and busy highways. In addition, double-glazed windows can be made with energy-efficient glasses. This configuration almost halves the heat leakage through the light openings.
When replacing single-glazed windows with double-glazed windows, it is necessary to consider that the maximum level of noise absorption is achieved with different thicknesses of spacers. The width of adjacent chambers should not be the same. The optimum ratio of internal partition sizes is 1 to 2. The thickness of the Glass on the street side should be 6 mm. It is also essential to keep in mind the increased weight of double chamber models, as in the case of triplex, the importance of the products increases by 40%. Window and door units with large area light openings must be equipped with reinforced hardware.
Replacing complex-shaped insulating glass units
Restoration of window units with non-standard shapes does not differ from repair of standard constructions. Replacement of insulating glass units with different forms is technically possible:
During the first visit, the master makes a template to precisely repeat the product's shape instead of taking measurements. To do this, the glazing unit must be removed from the light aperture. After assessing the damage, a specialist will decide on the advisability of returning it to its original place. Sometimes, the light aperture is temporarily covered with a film, chipboard board, fiberboard, or OSB.
Such repair differs from the usual cost and timing. Glass windows of complex shape are more expensive since more materials are required for production. In addition, the labor intensity of the process affects both the price and the turnaround time. If you wish, ordinary complex-shaped glazing can be replaced with sunscreen, energy-efficient, decorative, safe, or multifunctional glazing.
How much does it cost to replace your insulating glass unit?
Currently, there is no base price for the repair and modernization of the window. After all, the cost of the service is influenced by several factors at once:
- type, thickness, and number of panes;
- area, shape, and style of insulating glass units;
- type of windows;
- the term of the order.
Since the repair price comprises several components, it is customary to take the cost of 1 m² of a one- or two-chamber model as the basis. To this is added the price of additional options and services.
After measuring and examining the object, the price of replacing large-area double-glazed windows (jumbo) is determined. The urgency of the work is usually charged an additional fee, which is determined individually. You also need to consider the cost of transportation services.
Alternative to the replacement of insulating glass units
To increase thermal and sound insulation and improve the solar protection properties or aesthetics of windows, you can use notable films, which are glued to the Glass from the side of the interior. Today popular are universal polymer coatings that retain the UF-radiation from outside and do not let the heat out of the rooms.
Clean glass replacement is performed with cold glazing. In this case, the door and window units' soft openings are closed with single glass panes. Therefore, it takes less time to repair such constructions. It is carried out according to the standard scheme for models made of aluminum, plastic, or wooden profiles.
This repair is theoretically possible if you need to replace the Glass in a damaged insulating glass unit. However, it is inexpedient for several reasons:
- the economic effect is doubtful - in most cases, it is more profitable to replace the whole insulating glass unit since the repair requires additional transportation to the workshop and disassembly of the product;
- the light aperture in the window will remain open for several days after the master visit - when the Glass is replaced, the glass unit is immediately removed from the sash and taken to the workshop, so it will have to live or work with the film for a while;
- Repair time may increase - manufacturers spend more time on the order because it requires the additional dismantling of the broken Glass and cleaning of the spacer strips from the old sealant.
Separate replacement is beneficial only when the glass unit is equipped with expensive stained Glass, triplex, electric heating, or dimming. In these cases, it is more rational to order the repair of the product. In all other situations, replacing the glass unit entirely is more practical.
If the airtightness of the double-glazed window is broken during the cold season, urgent replacement is required. In contrast to the usual repair, it will be done without queuing, but you should understand that in this case, the request will not be completed in a couple of hours. After all, waiting for the sealant to harden while making the insulating glass unit is necessary. This process takes 12 to 24 hours. Therefore, the waiting time may be a little more than a day. The turnaround time for a standard order depends on the workload, ranging from 2 to 6 days.
Sealing the insulating glass unit is an excellent opportunity to improve the thermal and aesthetic properties of the window. Especially it can be done without any extra costs. But, of course, you have to listen to the recommendations of the expert who came to take measurements. After all, installing improved insulating Glass will help significantly reduce utility bills so that the costs will be repaid within two years.