Replacing Impact Glass
What you need to know
Impact glass is resilient but not unbreakable. On occasion, a homeowner may find that he or she needs to replace the impact glass in his or her home. Unless there has been damage to the frame, many times just the glass can be replaced. If there has been damaged to the frame, more likely than not, the entire unit will need to be replaced. It is ideal for homeowners to take several pictures of the damage from various angles from both inside and outside to send companies when requesting repair estimates.
Existing Impact Products:
Replacing glass in impact products such as windows and doors can be a fairly simple process. Once a homeowner has placed a work order with either the company that did the installation or with the manufacturer a service technician will come out to the home and assess the damage. Using specialized tools, the technician will deglaze (remove the adhesives) the impact window/door and replace the damaged impact glass insert with an intact piece of laminate glass of the same size and thickness. Once the pane of laminate glass is securely fitted within the frame the technician will seal everything.
Non-Impact Entry Doors:
Homeowners can spend a significant amount of time selecting a front/entry for their home, so it is no surprise that many homeowners would like to keep their existing door frames and swap out their existing glass for decorative impact glass. Unfortunately, many homeowners are disappointed to learn that this is not a possibility.
The reason for this due to how impact products are approved. The entirety of the product (frames, material, glass, size, shape, and assembly) goes through rigorous testing, which includes testing pressure ratings, impact ratings, and water infiltration. When an impact product is approved, it is approved for the product as a whole, rather than just the parts. Replacing a non-impact door glass with impact glass does not meet the qualifications for Wind-Borne Debris Regions (WBDR) and High-Velocity Hurricane Zones (HVHZ) approval.
Luckily, homeowners are happy to discover that they have many options when it comes to approved, impact-rated front/entry doors.