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Double glazed windows vs laminated glass – Which to choose?

March 9, 2023

It’s always great to have options in life – and the same goes for when you’re replacing the windows in your home.

Double glazing is the go-to choice for most homeowners these days. Manufactured with two panes of glass, with a layer of air or gas in between, it’s designed in this way to improve insulation, making your home more energy efficient, while helping cut down on noise levels from outside. 

But there is another glass option, one that’s often overlooked by people carrying out upgrades to their property.  

Laminated glass offers the same noise reduction, and heat-saving benefits as double glazing – but with some unique characteristics, which can make it a great alternative option for some.

In this article, we explain the differences between the two, so you can make the best choice for your home.

 

Why choose double glazing? 

  1. Energy efficiency: Double glazing ensures better insulation – helping your home retain more heat in winter, and keeping it cooler in summer.
  2. Noise reduction: Installing double glazing can significantly reduce external noise coming into your property, making it  a great choice if you live in a noisy area, such as next to a busy road or in a city.
  3. Cost-effective: Double glazing can often be more cost-effective for homeowners on a budget. The cost may be a little higher than single pane windows, but it should help bring down the cost of bills by improving your home’s energy efficiency.
  4. Safety and security: Double-glazed windows are harder to smash than windows with a single pane, making them more secure from intruders.
  5. Reduced condensation: The layer of air between the panes of glass in double glazing helps to reduce condensation, which can lead to damp and mould.
  6. Improved resale value: Double glazing is seen as a desirable feature by potential buyers, and can therefore add to the value of your home. 
  7. UV protection: Double-glazed windows can help to reduce the amount of ultraviolet radiation entering your home, which is responsible for fading furniture, carpets and curtains over time.

 

Why choose laminated glass?

 

  1. Safety and security: Laminated glass is much stronger than regular glass. It holds together even when shattered, and is a great choice for anyone concerned about safety and security.
  2. UV protection: Laminated glass can block up to 99% of the sun’s ultraviolet rays, helping to protect your skin and furniture from damage caused by UV exposure.
  3. Noise reduction: While double glazing is known to reduce noise pollution, laminated glass helps block out much outside sound, making it a good option for properties in high-traffic or high-noise environments like cities.
  4. Reduced damage from impact: Laminated glass is known as ‘safety glass’ for a reason. It can withstand impacts from objects like rocks much better than double glazing. The unique design means there is a much lower risk of shattering and damage.
  5. Good insulation: While double glazing windows are generally better when it comes to insulation, laminated glass can also provide some level of protection especially when combined with low-E coatings or other energy-efficient features.
  6. Improved privacy: Laminated glass can be made with a range of tints and coatings that can help improve privacy, making it a great choice for homeowners that require more seclusion, or specific rooms like bathrooms or offices. 

 

Are double glazed and laminated glass the same thing? 

Double glazing and laminated glass are not the same thing.

Double glazing involves leaving a pocket of air between two separate glass panels

Laminated glass, on the other hand, is made by sandwiching a layer of see-through plastic between the two sheets of glass.

While they do share similar properties around energy efficiency and noise reduction, there are enough differences to give home or business owners pause for thought.

 

How do you know which to choose?

Decisions, decisions, decisions.

Choosing between double glazing and laminated glass will depend entirely on your specific needs, and what you are looking for in a window. 

As we have pointed out, there are plenty of advantages to both types. 

Double glazing is a great choice for home or business owners looking to save on energy costs. An excellent noise reducer, it is often the more cost-effective and budget-friendly option. 

For those concerned about safety and security, laminated glass certainly makes a strong case. 

Commonly referred to as ‘safety glass’ – due to the fact it won’t shatter like its ordinary counterpart – its impact resistance properties make it an ideal solution for anybody worried about storms, extreme weather, crime or vandalism. 

It also boasts superb UV-blocking characteristics, which helps protect furniture and furnishings from damage, too.

Ultimately though, the decision between double-glazed windows and laminated glass depends on a variety of factors, such as location, budget, and your individual requirements. VEKA always recommends that you consult with a professional window installer or manufacturer to determine the best option for your property.