Glass canopies are normally utilized at the entrance of office blocks, hotels, leisure centers, shopping centers, and subways. They provide an outstanding look and are also aesthetically striking. This is typically due to the fact that the sky and the sun are reflected from gleaming glass panels.
It should be also said that glass canopies can be also used domestically, on a much smaller scale. This is done for the purpose of protecting a window or covering a walkway.
They have gained popularity due to the chance of achieving maximum light penetration. Apart from that, its minimalistic design makes them extremely stylish and modern. Furthermore, they are highly durable.
You should keep a number of key things in mind when installing a glass canopy for either a commercial project or a stunning finishing touch to your house. The below-depicted list will ensure the success of a glass canopy project from start to finish.
1. Conduct research online
Despite the size of the project, every glass canopy needs to start with deep research. You should be looking for photos of glass canopies in a similar setting to the one that you have. It will give you a chance to get an understanding of the way it is going to work. There are numerous images online whether it is a canopy aimed to provide shade from the sun over your house outdoor area or the entrance to a property.
You need to make sure to get some ideas about the type of glass canopy you want before contacting a glazier. Select several images and start planning your custom-made glass canopy or standard design.
2. Have a design drawing
Even though a glazier will offer you glass for the canopy, you also need a professional engineer to plan the frame for the glass. Sketching out your plans will provide your engineer with an idea of the type of structure you are looking for.
3. Get in contact with experts
Safety and compliance with building acts, codes and glazing requirements can be ensured by advice from an expert. You also want to make sure that your glass canopy is safe during rain, snow, and heavy winds. Different steel backup structures or laminated glass fins can support a glass canopy.
You can also make use of mild steel, aluminum, timber with glass bolted on top or stainless steel for your frame. Another option for the frame is lightweight floating glass skin on top or underneath a structure. Apart from that, an expert’s design advice is needed due to the following factors:
- In order to ensure that stress and deflection are within acceptable limits, points of support need to be analyzed.
- Extra reinforcement is needed for canopies that span large expenses
A crack of the glass can be caused by struts and/or wires as static bolts that used in for frameless glass canopies.
- A degree of rotation is ensured by special fittings. In order to reduce the stress around the holes in the glass swivel glass connectors are designed with rotation.
- It might be the case that generic or common fitting may not be applicable for glass canopies as connections between steel and glass can be fragile.
- It is believed that spider canopies are ideal for commercial and residential applications where there are support spans and large panes. The transfer of loads from the glass of the canopy to the supporting members is ensured by spider fittings.
4. Consider the height of the glass canopy
If you place a glass canopy too high you might expose yourself to a problem in terms of water driving under the actual canopy. It will make your canopy useless during certain weather conditions, thus, making it ineffective and a nuisance rather than a practical design solution.
You need to determine where rain is going to fall, especially during bad weather conditions, depending on the height the canopy is installed at. This can be easily done by simple trial and error testing before the actual installation of the glass.
5. Search for an experienced glazier
An experienced glazier is needed in order to fix the glass on top of the structure that your engineer or you build. A professional glazier will be able to advise the type of glass that will be most suitable for the type of design that you have chosen. In addition to that, he will recommend the most practical way to fix the glass to the structure.
Toughened laminated safety glass is generally used in glass canopies. Due to the fact that you will also have to decide on the glass type, fixing method, hardware, and general design, expert advice is highly essential.
6. Choose the right glass
When it comes to glass types, you have numerous options to select from. The range starts with clear, extra clear, self-cleaning, tinted, colored or glass that is digitally printed depending on the choice of design, special effect or image. Dirt and bird droppings can be concealed with the use of patterns on the glass. If you want to reduce unwanted heat gain you can make use of shading glass.
7. Determine the coverage the glass can provide
When it comes to determining the angle and size of the canopy, you should also evaluate the coverage that it will provide. You need to make sure that it is sufficient enough. A well-designed glass canopy can also assist in making your house more energy-efficient.
8. Take practical things into consideration
You should not forget about essential practical things such as drainage, overhang, and the environment. When it comes to drainage, the following should be considered:
- Proper water drainage requires gutters to be connected to the glass.
- For the purpose of eliminating ponding of water, your glass canopy needs to incorporate an angle or slope.
You also need to make sure to work out the safe measurement for any overhand past the fixing points. This is typically done by multiplying the thickness of the glass by 35, which will give you the maximum measurement in millimeters that the glass can overhang the fixing point.
The environment is another key element to be taken into consideration. You have to clearly understand that the surface of the canopy is going to get hot due to the absorption and angle to the sun. Bear in mind the durability of the glass canopy. It has to be durable enough to be able to deal with extremes of weather, for instance, strong winds and heavy rain and snow.
Taking all the aforementioned into consideration, it can be said that a glass canopy provides a contemporary and sleek look to any property despite its size. Without any doubt, you will be pleased with the choice you have made due to the fact that it offers a number of benefits in terms of longevity, durability, maintenance and general appearance. If you want to enhance your building entrance and make it more fascinating a glass canopy is a practical and attractive way of accomplishing this task. It will keep the weather away and bring more natural light inside the building.
When it comes to commercial projects you need to keep the design of the glass as simple as possible. In order to provide brand identity and marketing, you can integrate with signage, address and/or building name. Do not forget about a rule of thumb: less is more when it comes to the first impression.