Do Storm Doors Need Tempered Glass?

Do Storm Doors Need Tempered Glass?

When the weather rolls in, the safety of your family, your furries, and your house are your top priority. Preparing your home as a secure haven is essential for anyone who lives in a state that is often vulnerable to the elements. 

Installing storm doors are one of the many ways that you can provide additional protection. Whether you already have one or are new to this type of accessory in your home, the question as to which glass is the best can have an impact on your family's safety. 

In this article we'll answer the following questions:
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What Are Storm Doors?

Storm doors are exterior doors that provide an extra layer of protection for your home's entrance. These barriers not only protect your home from blown-around garden debris, but it acts as additional security. Some storm doors come with interchangeable screens that can alternate between insect screens or tempered glass. This allows home dwellers to change the purpose of the barrier, depending on the season.

There are other benefits to having a storm door as well. They're perfect for homeowners who enjoy leaving their front or patio doors open but who still want a barrier between in and out. Leave your main door open and storm door closed to keep soaring temperatures or nature-dwelling critters outside. If you opt for a ventilating door (door with a screen) you can take advantage of a cooling cross breeze on sweltering days. If you live in the North, storm doors are great in the winter, too, they'll protect your front door from damage caused by exposure to ice, hail, snow, and pelting rain. 

Along with other energy-efficient adjustments in your home, a storm door can also regulate your interior temperature. 

Do Storm Doors Need Tempered Glass?

YES. Tempered glass is required for storm doors according to the International Residential Code. Storm doors get a lot of use, people often push on them, run into them, and push or knock on the glass with their hands or other objects. Pressure or slamming the door can cause the glass to break. Non-treated glass, annealed glass, can break easily and breaks into sharp jagged pieces. Tempered glass offers a safer alternative to annealed glass which can cause serious injury. 

Half Light Storm Doors

Half view or half-light storm doors only provide viewing capabilities on half of the door. The lower half will be an extension of the solid frame.

Do Half Light Storm Doors Need Tempered Glass?
Yes. Even storm doors with a half panel of glass need it to be tempered. Remember these are the first barrier against outside elements. If there is a storm, any annealed glass is at risk of breakage. Storm doors also get a lot of use and the cheaper doors can be flimsy, when the door slams it can cause stress to annealed glass and eventually breakage.

Full Light Storm Doors

Full view storm door indicates that there is a full-length glass panel on the door. You will be able to view the outdoors as though there was no door there at all. 

Do Full Light Storm Doors Need Tempered Glass?

Yes. Full light storm doors are almost entirely a sheet or two of glass, if you're buying a used door make sure the glass in it is tempered. If the glass is not tempered, avoid dangerous accidents by replacing it with a tempered glass insert as soon as possible.

There are many options for styles, colors, and materials to select a storm door that suits your home. You can also choose a ventilating door, a roll screen, a three-quarter view door, or ones with various features. Some companies even consider your furbaby by adding a pet flap.

What is Tempered Glass?

Nicknamed "toughened glass," tempered glass is a safety glass. Unlike laminated glass, which is stuck together by a vinyl interlayer, tempered glass can still shatter. While it can hold its shape within a frame if cracked and broken, if the glass breaks loose, then you will find pebble-like bits, rather than shards and splinters like ordinary annealed glass. The pieces are mostly harmless. 

Tempered glass is made by heating a single piece of glass and cooling it immediately. This rapid cooling process causes the outside of the lens to harden quicker than the center. The tension of the center provides a strength that makes this glass more durable to hard conditions—thereby making it a perfect glass to use for storm doors. 

Learn More: Tempered vs Laminated Glass

Where Else is Tempered Glass Used?

Tempered glass or other safety glass is often used in the windows of cars. Windshields are made with laminated glass, but side door windows often use tempered glass for a thinner and cheaper alternative. The rule of thumb is that if the glass can pose a risk to humans, then a safety glass should be used. Bathroom areas, skylights, refrigerator shelves, oven doors, and patio doors all make use of tempered glass. 

According to the National Glass Association, safety glass, such as tempered or laminated glass is required within 36 inches of where people walk. Other criteria specify that it's necessary if the glass is less than 18 inches above the floor or the top of the glass is less than 36 inches above the floor. Any glass that exceeds nine square feet also needs to meet these safety guidelines. 

Make sure that your chosen storm door retailer uses tempered glass. Keep your family safe, and keep the weather outside in the coming seasons. Gain peace of mind for your family by taking these security measures. Your household will be happier and more confident about anything, come rain or shine.