Impact Glass Vs. Standard Window Glass

Impact and Standard window glass, MI Windows and Doors

Imagine it's mid-July and a storm is brewing outside your home. The wind howls and the rain pounds on your roof, but all seems secure - until a tree branch crashes through your kitchen window. Suddenly, you're dealing with broken glass and debris inside your home, scrambling to repair damages amidst the chaos. Want to avoid this situation? Impact glass could be your answer. 


What Is Impact Glass?

Impact glass, also known as hurricane impact glass and storm window glass, is specially designed to withstand severe weather conditions like strong winds. Its standout feature is its shatter resistance. With multiple, layered panes and special lamination, impact glass stands up to storm damage and is used in many brands of hurricane windows and doors. 

On the rare occasion the glass does break, an interlayer keeps the shattered pieces intact, preventing them from scattering. This not only makes your home safer during storms but also helps secure it against potential break-ins. Ideal for areas prone to storm damage, you can install both impact glass doors and windows to help protect your home.


What Is Standard Window Glass?

Standard glass, the traditional choice for windows, consists of a single glass layer. It's easy to manufacture and cost-effective. While it’s adequate for everyday use, it falls short in strength and safety compared to impact glass. Standard glass is prone to shatter into sharp, dangerous fragments upon impact, raising safety concerns in areas subject to harsh weather.


What’s the Difference Between Impact Glass and Standard Glass?

The key difference between impact glass and standard glass lies in durability. Impact glass is engineered to withstand high-velocity impacts from flying debris during a hurricane. While standard glass meets basic requirements for transparency and insulation, it lacks the advanced structural integrity and protective features of impact glass. 

Standard glass is more likely to break upon impact, making it less suitable for areas with a high risk of severe weather. The choice between the two glass types comes down to your specific needs, region, and weather events, as well as your budget.

Impact vs standard window glass

Benefits of Impact Glass Windows and Doors

Impact glass windows and doors protect your home from high winds, but they also have other benefits. Here’s the complete list of reasons you should look into this type of storm window:

  • Severe weather protection: Especially valuable in hurricane zones, impact glass can withstand high wind speeds and the impact from flying debris. These hurricane-resistant windows and doors can prevent water infiltration and safeguard the home's interior.
  • Enhanced safety: Like tempered glass, which is used in vehicles for increased safety, impact glass reduces the risk of injuries by preventing windows and doors from shattering into dangerous shards. 
  • Home security: Impact glass is strong enough to withstand a blow from a hammer or even an ax. Its robustness deters intruders, offering homeowners extra security and peace of mind.
  • Noise reduction: The multi-layered composition of impact glass, coupled with its dense interlayer, provides better noise reduction than standard glass. It’s ideal for homeowners who want to create a tranquil and serene indoor environment.


How Much Does Impact Glass Cost?

The final cost of impact glass windows varies based on their size, design, and the unique requirements of your property. While the initial cost of impact glass may be higher than that of standard windows, the investment pays off in the long run. Impact glass windows have significant long-term advantages in terms of safety, security, energy efficiency, and even potential savings on insurance premiums. 

It's essential to obtain quotes from reputable window installation companies and factor in the potential savings on insurance premiums and energy bills when considering the overall cost-effectiveness of impact windows. 


Making an Informed Decision About Your Window Glass

Choosing between impact and standard glass windows involves a thorough evaluation of several key factors:

  • Geographical location: Your home's location plays a crucial role in your decision. In areas prone to severe weather, hurricane windows are indispensable. In regions with milder climates, standard glass may adequately meet your needs.
  • Budget considerations: While the initial expense of impact glass windows is higher, the long-term benefits, including enhanced protection and potential energy savings, make it a worthwhile investment. Balancing your budget with these considerations is essential.
  • Security concerns: For those prioritizing home security, impact glass offers an added layer of protection that standard glass cannot match. It’s the superior choice for peace of mind, especially in areas with elevated crime rates.
  • Energy efficiency: Both impact and standard glass windows contribute to the overall energy efficiency of a home. Consider the insulation properties of each type based on your climate and energy-saving goals.


Find the Right Glass Type for Your Home

The choice between impact glass and standard glass involves careful consideration of your specific needs, location, and budget. While impact glass offers unparalleled safety and security features, standard glass may be sufficient for homes in regions with less severe weather risks. 

Ultimately, investing in quality windows is an investment in the long-term comfort, safety, and value of your home. At MI Windows and Doors, we offer high-quality glass options for all needs. If you need top-quality impact glass, check out our V3000 Series, available with our patented StormArmor protection, designed to withstand winds up to 140 miles per hour. When the storms roll through, we have you covered. 

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