How to Choose Front Door Impact Glass Inserts
So many options!
Impact glass door inserts are a popular choice among homeowners interested in adding elegance and natural lighting to their home while maintaining security and energy efficiency. Manufacturers such as RSL and ODL make impact glass door inserts that meet Florida HVHZ (high-velocity hurricane zone) requirements in a variety of styles and privacy levels. When choosing impact glass door inserts, homeowners should take design, privacy, security, and energy efficiency into consideration.
The most common design options for impact glass door inserts are decorative glass, which includes textured/beveled/Baroque/stained, clear glass, caming, or any combination of the aforementioned.
Textured glass is characterized by a distinct pattern that is impressed on the surface of the insert. Textured glass offers a happy medium between clear and opaque, and has an average privacy rating.
Beveled glass is made by taking thick glass and creating an angled surface cut (bevel) around the entire edge. Bevels refract light as it shines through, creating a color prism. With the exception of the cut edges, beveled glass remains smooth and clear, giving it a relatively low privacy rating.
Baroque glass is manufactured to look like hand-blown glass. It tends to have bold, swirling patterns and color contrasts. Since Baroque glass is [deliberately] distorted it has a moderate privacy level.
Stained glass offers more privacy as it can be either transparent (cathedral glass) or opaque (opalescent). Stained glass can be used to accent a clear decorative window or used for the entire window.
Clear glass is exactly what it sounds like – clear glass. While it allows the most natural light to shine through, it also has the lowest privacy rating. Some homeowners opt to have their clear glass frosted to provide additional privacy.
Caming refers to the metal (zinc, brass, nickel) that binds the door glass elements together, however, several manufacturers offers Crystal Caming or “Clear Caming”.