Do you want an innovative way to spruce up your home or office? If so, a glass balustrade for your stairs or balcony should be at the top of your list. Custom glass balustrades add a professional and polished look to any house or commercial building. They can add property value and help your building stand out.
However, you have to choose the style of glass you prefer, decide on a budget and find a glass company that holds itself to the highest safety standards.
All those steps might sound overwhelming, but don’t worry. Like any other home improvement project, adding a glass balustrade is easier when you get a little advice from the experts. Keep reading to learn the three questions you should ask yourself as you begin the process of adding a beautiful new glass balustrade to your stairs, pool deck or balcony.
1. Do You Prefer Frameless, Semi-Frameless or Framed Glass?
The first thing to decide is how you want your balustrade to look. This glass feature comes in a few notable styles:
- Frameless glass: These balustrades lack any metal support posts. Instead, the glass is thick enough to safely support itself.
- Semi-frameless glass: This style of balustrade incorporates metal supports (usually stainless steel), which frame the left and right sides of each panel of glass.
- Framed glass: These balustrades have metal supports to the left and right of each sheet of glass plus metal railings (usually stainless steel or aluminium) running along the top and bottom of the balustrade.
Each balustrade style has its pros and cons. For instance, frameless glass blends seamlessly into any environment, giving you a completely uninterrupted view of your surroundings. However, the lack of a handrail or clear steel posts can give you a little vertigo, especially if you use it for a balcony.
Similarly, semi-frameless and framed glass can look a little boxy or call too much attention to themselves, depending on how dark the frame is and where the glass is situated. Conversely, a beautiful frame can draw attention to the glass itself as well as add a sense of tidiness and sleek organisation to a room.
2. How Much Do You Want to Spend?
The cost of a glass balustrade varies by where you want to install it (outdoors or indoors, around a pool or surrounding an entire deck, etc.) as well as which style you choose.
For instance, in order to stand upright and meet the safety standards we’ll talk about below, frameless glass is much thicker than semi-frameless and framed balustrades. But this extra cost on the glass still doesn’t measure up to the cost of metal framing. Steel and aluminium posts can make your project much more expensive per metre, so keep that in mind.
3. Do You Understand Glass Safety Requirements?
The federal and state governments thoroughly regulate glass balustrade construction—as well they should. After all, glass shatters. If the glass is manufactured or installed improperly, it poses a serious safety threat.
If you want to add a glass balustrade to a balcony in Victoria, you’ll need to apply for a building permit. A structural engineer may visit to verify that the balcony was constructed correctly. You’ll also need to properly maintain your glass balustrade to maximise its safety and durability. Homeowners can find safety instructions and recommendations for glass balustrades on the Victoria government website.
Want your glass installed to the highest safety standards? Work with an experienced glass installation company rather than installing the balustrade yourself. Every time you descend the stairs or step onto your fifth-floor balcony, you’ll have peace of mind knowing the company you work with strictly adhered to all local and national codes.
Do you want to add a glass balustrade to your property in Melbourne? Get in touch with South Melbourne Glass today.