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The type of glass that fills your window or patio door frames plays an important role in protecting your home from weather, aids in your home's energy efficiency, and can add style to your home. There is a type of glass for nearly every climate, location, and situation. Learn the differences between types of glass and the available options.

Have you heard window glass called insulated or tempered? You might wonder what they are or why the difference is important. Each glass type is manufactured with different capabilities and features, making one type better than another in a particular spot. Learn common types of window glass and what they do best. 

Common Window Glass Terms

There are many terms and synonyms with different types of glass. It’s a good idea to familiarize yourself with the various terms before you get started on a window or door replacement project.

= available in Marvin Replacement products

Marvin Replacement Glass Types

Marvin Replacement windows typically feature two panes of insulated annealed glass with a metallic coating and gas fill for energy efficiency. We offer a variety of tinted glass and decorative glass that feature designs to provide privacy and style. For peace of mind and better living, we offer tempered or laminated glass that can reduce outdoor noise, offer safety, and meet building code compliance. All our glass options come with your choice of metallic, or also known as Low E, coating best suited for your climate.

Insulated Glass

Marvin Replacement uses two panes of glass and fills the space between the panes with argon gas to provide insulation. Argon gas is a non-toxic, colorless, and odorless gas that is heavier than air. Argon reduces heat transfer to serve as an insulator. The spacer bar keeps the glass panes separated and seals in the gas.

Tempered Glass

We have tempered glass, commonly referred to as safety glass, because it breaks into small, dull pieces. Tempered glass is approximately four times stronger than annealed glass of the same thickness. Tempered glass commonly gets used for home windows, patio doors, and many other places, like stove tops and smartphones.

The International Residential Code requires tempered glass in hazardous locations, like:

  • Fixed or operable window glass larger than 9 square feet

  • Areas within 24 inches of a doorway

  • Windows with the bottom sill less than 60 inches above the floor

  • Windows within 36 inches of where people walk

Laminated Glass

Marvin Replacement also offers laminated glass, which is a type of safety glass that holds together if shattered. A thin polymer layer applied to the glass holds the glass together if broken. Laminated glass can appear in patio doors.


How Glass Impacts Home Energy Efficiency

Our Low-E glass has a microscopically thin, transparent metallic coating to help keep your home comfortable year-round. E stands for emissivity, which is a material’s ability to radiate energy. The number following the “E” indicates the number of metallic layers. Marvin Replacement windows and doors have four choices of Low E coatings. The metallic coatings can appear on annealed, tempered, laminated, and our tinted glass.

Marvin Replacement Low-E glass options are below:

A Marvin Replacement design consultant reviews options with a couple.
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Learn More About Energy Efficiency

Find out what makes windows and patio doors energy efficient and which ratings can help you find the right energy efficient window or patio door for your home.

Energy Efficiency

Frequently Asked Questions

Which type of glass is stronger?

Most consider tempered glass the strongest type of glass, but several combinations of tempered glass exist that can provide similar strength. Tempered glass appears in impact-resistant glass, hurricane glass, and laminated glass, too.

What kind of window glass is best?

The safety properties of tempered glass make it a good choice and often a requirement in certain areas of a home. Laminated glass can provide additional safety because an interlayer can hold broken glass in place. Tempered and laminated glass can also have tint and metallic coatings best suited for your climate to make it the best window glass for your climate.

How to choose the best window glass?

Choosing the best window glass for your home can come down to where you’re replacing windows and the type of window or patio door you’re replacing. Tempered glass is the best window glass in certain areas because of safety considerations and is required in specific places.

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Exterior view of a brick home in Charlotte with Marvin Replacement windows.

Learn more about Marvin Replacement glass options and energy efficient replacement windows. Start living more comfortably in your home by scheduling a free, no hassle design consultation with Marvin Replacement today!

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