Although there’s no getting away from the fact that glass shower screens look stunning many people are put off by the fact that they could shatter. In fact recently a man in the US lost his life through a freak glass shower screen accident and a women right here on the Gold Coast very nearly lost a limb when a large shard of glass pierced her leg when her shower screen shattered.
That said, in Australia there are now very strict laws about the types of glass that can and can’t be used in a modern shower screen and in essence there are two varieties
- Toughened safety glass
- Laminated safety glass
Each type has unique properties that reflect the type of shower screen they’re used in. So what’s the difference?
Toughened safety glass
As the name suggests it’s glass that’s been toughened through a high temperature heating process. It’s extremely durable and in the rare event that it does shatter it’s designed to never completely break. In fact if it does shatter it’s is designed specifically to do so into thousands of tiny pieces thus dramatically reducing the risk of serious injury. Ideally toughened glass is used primarily in semi-frameless and frameless shower screens and is usually between 6mm and 10mm in thickness.
Laminated safety glass
Laminated safety glass is essentially made up of two panes of glass that are sandwiched either side of a piece of PVC film. It works on the same principle as the toughened glass in that if it does break, it’s designed to do so into thousands of tiny pieces. Although laminated glass has greater acoustic properties than toughened glass it’s not designed to be used without a surrounding frame and therefore should be used in conjunction with fully-framed shower screens only. Usually around 6mm of glass thickness is strong enough to prevent most impacts.
The good news is that both of these modern-types of shower screens are considered to be safe unlike the older varieties which didn’t have these common safety elements. This means that when you purchase a brand new glass shower screen, irrespective of whether it’s a frameless, semi-frameless or fully-framed you can rest assured knowing that it isn’t going to shatter at the slightest impact.
If you’re looking to replace your old glass shower screen with something more contemporary or are fed up with scrubbing your existing shower curtain then come and talk to Down Under Screens. Our experienced staff are on hand to help you find e right style for you and your home. Contact us today on 07 3807 3355 and start the ball rolling towards a lighter, contemporary bathroom makeover.