can be a versatile addition to a balcony, deck, patio,
or level of an open-air building. Because they are
made of glass, which is fairly weather-resistant,
glass balconies do not require frequent replacing.
Though they do require cleaning, they’re seen
as a fairly low-maintenance addition to a space. Further,
they add a great splash of personality to a deck,
patio, floor, or balcony by creating a modern look
and by drawing the outside world in.
Though glass railings may seem very straightforward,
in truth there are a wide range of design and installation
options available. Architectural metal and glass companies
all offer their own distinct approaches to glass railings.
However, many of the components that go into a glass
railing are fairly standardized. Below, you may read
a breakdown of the typical parts that make up a glass
1) Glass Paneling
The most obvious component in a glass railing is,
of course, the glass. The glass panels for glass railings
are typically approximately three feet high. Depending
on the space and the design, panels can range in length
from four to six feet. Glass will almost always be
at least 1/4 an inch thick, but thickness beyond 1/4
an inch will vary depending on the manufacturer of
the glass panels. The glass used in glass railings
should always be tempered so as to increase its strength.
2) Anchoring Posts
The posts on a glass railing are attached directly
to the floor that the railing will be coming up from.
Screws and bolts are used to affix the posts to the
floor. The posts act as an anchor by supporting the
glass when it is placed between them. Different designs
exist for corner posts and posts to be used in the
center of a railing. The number of posts that are
needed across an installation varies based on how
big the installation will be.
At the top of each post, a cap is placed so as to
prevent weather elements or environmental elements
from getting inside the post. Caps are often also
decorative, adding to the appearance of the post (and
the overall glass railing) by including adornments
or intricate designs. Since most the glass in glass
railings tends to be undecorated, caps provide an
excellent opportunity for personalization.
4) Support Rails
Support rails are installed on the top and bottom
of each glass panel. The rails installed on the bottom
of the glass keep the glass from laying on the ground.
The rails that are installed on the top of the glass
often act as a hand rest. Top rails also increase
the stability of the overall railing by acting as
a connector for the anchoring posts.
5) Support Legs
Between the bottom rail and the floor of the deck,
balcony, or building, support legs are installed.
The function of these support legs is to prevent the
bottom rail from buckling beneath the weight of the
glass paneling. Support legs are typically placed
in the center between posts.