Why do conservatory windows shatter? It’s a question many ask themselves if one of the glass panels in their home suddenly breaks. Glass is fragile, meaning the chance of it cracking is always in the back of your mind. After all, it could be something as random as a neighbour’s ball flying into the window that breaks the glass through.
However, sometimes there can be no obvious cause at all. Cracks could appear from nowhere, or the entire window could shatter altogether, with no sign of any issues. In the UK, and especially in winter, shattering happens more than many realise.
Many older conservatories use single-glazed glass. Because of this, the windows in these builds are more prone to shattering. With only one pane of glass, the material is thin, and temperature changes and sudden impacts can have a greater effect on it.
Also, because it lacks insulation, the glass can buckle under the strain of changing heat. In an older conservatory, which you might already know gets exceptionally cold in winter and warm in summer, there’s even more risk. At any point, the glass in your windows might break, leaving you with lots to clean up and a repair bill to pay too.
So, why do conservatory windows shatter, and how can you stop it from happening? You can find solutions to make it less likely, but the risk of your glass breaking will always be there. However, instead of waiting for it to fail, why not invest in a modern replacement?
New double glazing for conservatories is as affordable as it is useful, giving you more durable glass to better protect against shattering. Also, double glazing has much better insulation, preventing heat transfer. As a result, you can take control of your conservatory’s climate once again.
There are three main ways conservatory windows could shatter. The first, and most common, is impact breaks. Impact breaks are when something external breaks through the glass. That could be a ball, a hammer, or another object. Because of this, it’s very difficult to avoid this risk completely.
However, the chance of it happening is still unlikely. The more likely causes of failure for glass in a conservatory concerns the pressure on the panes. When your conservatory windows are dealing with changes in heat, they become much more fragile.
At that point, a stress crack could appear. Stress cracks occur when the window is dealing with a lot of changing forces. It’s most likely to happen in the winter when your warm home clashes with the cold air from outside. Because single-glazed glass is prone to heat transfer, these two different pressures collide more violently, with the window caught in the middle.
These forces can eventually cause the glass to break from within, buckling at a point of tension. The result is a wide crack which can sometimes extend across the whole window. These cracks often need a full replacement straight away.
In some circumstances, though, it might be a more violent break. If the window is under intense pressure or the sealant has broken, then your conservatory windows could shatter. If there’s no sealant, the two contrasting heats can collide inside the window.
Once they crash into each other, the reaction can cause the glass to implode. While this doesn’t happen in most cases, conservatory windows are more likely to run the risk, especially in older builds. So, if you have one of these spaces in your home, replacing the glass could be vital.
When you replace your conservatory windows, you’ll get a more durable design. Rather than one pane of glass, your new window will use advanced double glazing as standard. Double glazing works by creating a barrier between both panes of glass, filled with a layer of argon gas.
When contrasting temperatures come into contact with the window, the gas levels them out. As a result, there won’t be nearly as much strain on the glass. Not only that, but with two panes instead of one, you can block out more cold air, and capture more of your home’s natural heat.
New conservatory windows are also weatherproof. When rain and water strike older designs, they can often seep in through poor design. However, double glazing is air and water-tight. Even the worst conditions won’t have any effect on it, and the glass won’t bend or go out of shape in any way.
Because of this, there’s far less chance of rainwater causing mould or rust, as well as condensation. That means you can protect the sealant of the window more effectively, reducing the risk that your conservatory windows have to shatter.
Not only will your window be at less risk of breaking, but your conservatory will give you less hassle. Rather than put up with a room that is never warm or cool enough, new windows can help you take back control of the space. Double glazing has excellent energy efficiency, and it has enough insulation to keep you warm and comfortable even in the cold.
Additionally, double glazing reduces glare and protects from harmful UV rays, making your conservatory more usable in the summer as well. You’ll even find that you save money on your energy bills, and decrease your carbon footprint!
Double glazing doesn’t entirely stop the risk of shattering, although it does reduce it. However, there are some things you can do to prevent that risk, and preserve your new conservatory windows for longer. Firstly, condensation can be a big reason why windows weaken. Condensation can build up on the glass itself, wear down the sealant, and develop into harmful mould.
To stop it from developing, all you’ll have to do is wipe the windows down and check them every so often. Other ways you can avoid condensation include keeping your conservatory dry by removing moisture sources, and by opening the windows to keep air circulating.
Sunshine can also be a problem – sometimes. While natural light can lift your living space’s look, too much of it can put a strain on any window. If you still have single-glazed glass, protecting it from excess heat is vital, and the sun can harm double glazing units too.
It can stain old frames around the new glass, potentially weakening its structure. To protect your home from excess sunlight, installing blinds is useful, and you could add new guttering to provide some shading.
Also, thanks to modern technology, you can strengthen the glass in your window. Many providers offer glass safety film, which gives conservatory windows another layer of protection and stops glass getting everywhere should it shatter. Alternatively, you could even invest in tempered glass.
Tempered glass uses a high-pressure manufacturing process, meaning the window is always in a state of tension. That means it can withstand extreme pressures, and even impact breaks are scarce. The glass can also break into granules for easier cleaning if it does buckle.
If your conservatory windows shatter, then you can get caught in a vicious cycle. Even if you can repair the glass, it’s always a temporary fix. Eventually, single-glazed units fail or shatter again. As a result, it’s often best to replace with double glazing.
New double glazing is an affordable investment, with new panels starting at low prices. And that’s only for standard glass – you can also invest in Low-E glass to improve energy efficiency or even self-cleaning glazing that has a special coating to get rid of dirt and muck without you needing to worry about it!
You can also save money on new conservatory windows by working with a local company. Local installers cost a lot less usually, as they don’t have as many overheads to cover. If you work with a national brand, then you could end up paying high fees for travel and administration costs.
Local providers, on the other hand, can offer the same quality conservatory windows for much less. Also, they’re right on your doorstep, so you won’t have to wait as long for them to get to you, saving you money on travel costs in the process.
However, finding one can take up a lot of time, and that’s where Conservatory Online Prices can help. When you get a quote for conservatory windows through us, we can put you in touch with local companies for you. That means it’ll take a lot less time to get new windows, and you won’t have to risk working with a rogue trader.
Additionally, we can connect you to several suppliers in your area, many of whom are Checkatrade members and Which? Trusted Traders. Because of this, you can negotiate with them all to find offers that shatter your expectations!
Invest in new conservatory windows with Conservatory Online Prices, and make the risk of them shattering go away.
It’s easy to find a low price for your new windows with us. All you have to do is fill out our online form with what you’d like, and one of our friendly team members will get back to you quickly to discuss your ideas in detail.
Alternatively, you can always give us a call on 0800 124 4307! We can’t wait to hear from you and to help you create a more comfortable conservatory.