How practical are glass walls in terms of leakage

These glass walls blur the boundary between indoors and outdoors allowing ample light to enter the interior spaces and they look great but how practical or convenient are they? What's the maintenance cost like?
How practical are glass walls in terms of leakage

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Comments (6)

Manuel, Architect Office - Other • 2016

In terms of water, it has to do with the degree and quality of glass and the installer. most of the time it is installer error. if you do have a leak and the glass Is within tolerance of accuracy, and you have a leak, it is a problem that is going to be costly because it is probably a not to square or accurate rough opening, or a shifting, moving problem of the building. you see you can't add more glass to cover a leak and it does not look good to apply too much silicon or sealer. So in conclusion you better make sure every thing is straight and as square as possible before you order you glass , specially if it is going to be used as a roof.

Nikhil, Urban Designer • 2016

We recently decided to cover the exterior wall of a cafe in Goa with glass instead of a wall. It was cheaper and faster than a wall. Goa is a beautiful state on the West coast of India with lots of sunlight. So we decided to choose tinted black glass from St. Gobain. The end result was beautiful. It keeps a lot of the heat out but not all. In fact, the glass itself gets super hot when you touch it, and therefore some of this heat radiates in. At the moment, we've installed high efficiency fans inside that help cool the space and we have provisions for air conditioners but we haven't installed air conditioners yet. I'm considering cooling the glass down for a bit in the early mornings with water, but haven't tried that yet. In general, I still love the black tinted glass look rather than a wall. In the monsoons (rainy season) in goa, it's simply beautiful to sit in the cafe and look out at all the rain and greenery through the glass which would have otherwise been blocked by a wall.

William, Student • 2016

The amount of heat exchange, either inward or outward can be controlled by the type of glass, and/or treatments used on the windows, ie: low-e glass. The amount of daylighting and glare can also be controlled in this way.

pauly • 2016

Good question! These glass windows (arguably walls) always look fantastic, but do have quite high maintenance costs.

One of the biggest ones is just cleaning them, especially on commercial buildings.

The other by-product is the amount of heat they let flow in and out. This makes heating difficult/expensive and calling expensive in hotter climates.

Peter, Manufacturer • 2016

Hi Carrie,
I love the light and see the advantage for using all glass. Our products "Weiland Sliding Doors" offer a DP80 and are Hallmark rated. Check out our website if you like and let me know if you have questions.

Carrie, Architect • 2016

Manuel, thanks for addressing my concerns.