Once you’ve seen a home using all-glass garage doors you are not likely to forget it. They stand out. Windows are distinctive. They reflect the personality of the building and its owner. It may surprise you to learn that they are also increasingly popular in the Madison WI area. Maybe it’s because they are contemporary, or it could be the influence of Frank Lloyd Wright’s work in the area. There are many older homes enhanced by all-glass panel doors. And many new homes as well. For a fresh take on curb appeal they’re naturals.
There are different types of all-glass versions:
- Aluminum frames encasing glass panels
- Glass panels adhering to a hidden aluminum framework – a more futuristic look
- Glass panels held in place by wooden framework
One of the top features of all-glass doors is the dozens of color options available – colored frames as well as tinted and frosted glass.
Advantages Of All-glass Garage Doors
Good looks – a “wow” factor – is the main reason people consider all-glass doors. But there’s more to them than that. Included in the top benefits of all-glass designs are:
- Natural light – obviously, an all-glass door lets in an abundance of natural light. Even though window panels in traditional garage doors are really popular nothing compares to a full glass garage door. If your garage doubles as a workshop, workout room or hobby center, natural light is an even bigger value. Beyond the healthy benefits of natural light, there’s a cost savings thanks to less need for electric lights.
- Rugged construction – aluminum is both strong and light. It withstands heavy loads and stress. Requiring very little maintenance, these doors are smooth and quiet.
- Increased privacy – that’s right privacysecurity. The idea of a wall of windows increasing the privacy of anyone inside seems odd. But, with tinted and frosted glass you can have the benefits of more natural light without anyone peaking in.
- Weather-resistant– glass doors resist extreme weather conditions like heat, rain and salt. Tempered glass resists ding, dents and cracks, too.
- Colors to match – the aluminum frames of all-glass doors are available painted, powder coated, anodized (a protective coating) and with wood-grain finishes. There’s a color combination to match your home and personality.
It’s All About The Glass
Glass panels are the major building blocks of all-glass doors. Today’s window glass is not what it once was – it’s dramatically better. Forget the days of broken window panes in your parent’s or grandparent’s garage. Modern window panels are often tempered glass. They are as strong as the frames holding them. And, if you’re really worried about security there is “bullet-proof” glass. The bottom line: there’s glass to fit your needs.
Common tempered glass is laminated. It has two glass panels with a vinyl layer sandwiched in between. The glass is strong, scratch-resistant and shatter-proof. The inner layer blocks our UV rays and reduces outside noise.
The standard glass in most doors is similar to your home’s windows. Either single- or double-pane. Tempered glass is a wise investment. Unlike standard glass, if it breaks it shatters into thousands of tiny pieces like auto glass. Standard glass breaks into long shards and big pieces, dangerous pieces.
All-glass Garage Doors – Drawbacks
Some of the features that make all-glass doors inviting are also disadvantages. Some are based on personal choices and others on design and performance. Consider these potential drawbacks:
- Too contemporary – the exciting look of all-glass doors on homes in the area might inspire you, but the style just doesn’t fit your neighborhood.
- Not a practical option – all-glass is “cool” but not practical for day-to-day use, especially in a home where the garage door is the family’s number one point of entry. They are not as energy efficient as other options, etc.
- Poor insulation – glass is notoriously poor insulation. All-glass doors cannot compare to insulated steel, wooden or aluminum doors. Double-pane, high-energy glass offers the best option. But it still doesn’t compare.
- Weight – glass panels are heavy. Most are heavier than standard steel or aluminum panels. An all-glass installation will almost always require a new, more powerful garage door opener. They also use more robust springs and need stronger overhead supports.
Several of the disadvantages come down to the cost of the doors and installation. High-quality glass is not cheap. Tinting costs extra – and there are many options like etching that kick the price higher yet.
Installing All-glass Garage Doors Takes Experience
Choosing a standard garage door comes down to picking the material you like, the finish you like and the color. There’s a lot more “science” that goes into selecting and installing an all-glass door system. It requires a skilled professional who understands the complicated process of building a glass garage door. In addition, it requires the right tools and experience to install it. Installed correctly, glass garage doors are safe and dependable.
When you decide an all-glass door is worth considering, call or email Northland Door Systems at 608-251-3627. Or visit our unique garage door show room just minutes from Madison. We make it easy to work with our professionals. We’re here for repairs, maintenance and installation of the latest garage door choices including all-glass garage doors in Madison WI and southern Wisconsin.