Why is Tempered Glass Safer than Annealed Glass?

Tempered glass is something you will potentially encounter while looking into various security and safety glass options. However, there are misconceptions regarding what tempered glass is and why it is safer than annealed (regular) glass.

This blog will seek to provide you with all the information you need to know about tempered glass, its applications, why it is safer than annealed glass, and how difficult it is to break tempered glass.

What is Tempered Glass?

Tempered glass is a type of glass that undergoes a special heat and cooling treatment process. After this process, the glass’ properties are altered such as changing how it shatters and strengthening the glass overall.

Common Applications of Tempered Glass:

  • Architectural glass, such as glass railings, balustrades, staircases, partitioning, and glass doors
  • Glass furniture such as tables and shelves
  • Shopfront windows
  • Vehicle windows and windscreens

Why is Tempered Glass Safer than Annealed Glass?

The main purpose of the heat and cooling treatment process is to strengthen the glass, and in the event that it does shatter, make it safer for people. Tempered glass is typically used in settings where there is a greater-than-usual danger of injury from shattered glass.

Should tempered glass shatter due to an impact, it shatters into thousands of tiny, comparatively harmless glass cubes. In the event that these cubes fly in a person’s direction or are handled incorrectly, it is less likely to cause serious injury.

In comparison, when annealed glass shatters, it shatters into large, sharp pieces. These large, sharp pieces can easily inflict serious injury when it flies towards someone or if someone handles them incorrectly.

A prime example of how tempered glass is used to reduce the risk of injury is by placing it in high-traffic areas in buildings where there is an increased risk of an accident, such as staircases or glass doors.

Is it Easy to Break Tempered Glass?

It is unlikely that an accidental bump or impact from someone or something is going to cause tempered glass to completely shatter. This is due to the heating and cooling treatment process that tempered glass undergoes, which makes it approximately 5 times stronger than annealed glass.

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