Glass is almost as popular as wood when it comes to the furniture industry. This is because glass furniture not only looks good, but it’s also a very good choice for a minimalistic yet trendy look. Glass furniture looks very innovative, sophisticated, trendy, and delicate. It is also very versatile and can be easily fit in any design. However, glass furniture has its own drawbacks too. Find out more about whether the glass furniture is worth your hard-earned money or not.
How Is Glass Furniture Made?
Glass furniture is made from large sheets of safety glass. Safety glass is far tougher, resistant, and better than ordinary glass. Safety glass is made from a sheet of ordinary glass, which is cut, shaped, and processed. This sheet is then heated at very high temperatures, and cold air is blown at the surface. Due to this, the surface rapidly cools down, while the inside of the sheet doesn’t. This reduces permanent compressive stress on the sheet of glass.
Not only does this make the glass stronger, but it also alters the way it breaks. Instead of shattering, safety glass breaks into big, relatively harmless pieces. These pieces are also called dice. This helps clean up the broken parts and avoids people stepping on them. Also, these pieces don’t fly off on being broken because of how heavy they are.
Glass furniture is also made of lamented glass. Lamented glass is made when two sheets of glass are fixed together with a piece of plastic between them. They are usually stuck together by using a PVB resin glue film. Moreover, they are heated to bond together and create a flat layer. These sheets are then fixed into their frames. This can be metal, wood, or plastic. It all depends on the type of glass furniture you are planning to buy.
Is Glass Furniture Worth the Investment?
Buying glass furniture can be quite a risky endeavor. There are a lot of different views on whether it is worth buying. Admittedly, there are multiple pros and cons of glass furniture. People claim glass furniture is delicate and easily broken. However, that depends on the quality of glass used. Glass furniture bought from a manufacturer that takes quality control very seriously, can last for decades. Some of the top manufacturers of glass furniture include Monarch Specialities, Crosley Furniture, Convenience Concepts, Neos Modern Furniture, and Ashley.
Glass furniture goes very well with any setting. It fits in perfectly with wood, plastic, cloth, and even concrete. It is also manufactured in a variety of designs and shapes. In addition to that, the design is very popular in modern and contemporary homes because of the graceful and elegant look. The transparency also gives the room an illusion of size, because it doesn’t block your views like wood or plastic.
Glass furniture is not only safe, but it may also last longer than wood if one takes proper care of it. This is because, unlike plastic, glass does not fade or experience wear and tear. It also doesn’t rust. Wood can become weak over time, especially if your furniture has become home to termites. It also becomes home to micro-organisms. This is also what makes glass furniture perfect for humid conditions like bathrooms. All the humidity makes wood bloat and grow fungus.
Glass furniture stays exactly like it was bought. It doesn’t get pale or stained, as it is not porous nor does it become weak. Glass is also very eco-friendly and easy to clean. All you have to do is wipe and clean it with a wet cloth.
Drawbacks of Glass Furniture
On the other hand, glass is said to be very high maintenance. While stains and spills are easily cleaned, regular cleaning is very important. Glass is prone to fingerprints, smudges, and dust that have to be cleaned. Due to its pristine appearance, glass cannot be left dirty, as even the smallest stain shows clearly. To avoid stains and spills hardening, wipe the table immediately. For harsh stains, use a little baking soda and leave it on the stains.
If you have a glass table at home for a few months or years, you would probably see that it has a dusty surface. The stains are difficult to clean. In strong lighting conditions, they are quite visible and you can’t even fix them with a regular glass cleaner. Strong buffers and polishes are required so that glass furniture is brought back to its new condition. In the case of other materials, particularly plastic, things are a lot easier as stains are not tough to remove.
Using placemats and coasters is also very important to protect the surface. While good quality glass is very unlikely to shatter, it can break and chip. These will destroy the overall appearance of the table. You should try to protect your glass from excessive heat, a lot of force, and sharp objects. Moving glass furniture around is also very difficult. It’s very heavy, and even carrying it from the shop to your home can be very tough. Especially if you live above the ground floor.
A few people make the mistake of placing extraordinary hot dishes on glass furniture such as tables. This results in cracks and also poses a risk of breaking the glass. While you have to be extraordinarily careful with glass, such issues are not faced especially when we talk about wood. Plastic is also not as delicate as glass and is a good insulator of heat.
Price is another thing you should be careful of. The better the quality of your glass, the more expensive it’s going to be. Glass furniture is generally more expensive than wood especially if you go for the high-end premium quality glass. The benefit of using such glass is that it will not get stained easily and is easier to clean too. The chances of breaking are rare but then, not everyone can make such a high investment.
There have also been cases of glass furniture spontaneously exploding which should be considered.
Why Does Glass Furniture Spontaneously Explode?
Any material would incur damage if it is forcefully hit. However, if glass explodes without any reason, it is very dangerous, particularly because you have no way to predict it, and so you can’t protect yourself.
According to glass specialists and manufacturers, glass explodes due to imperfections. During the manufacturing process, metal contaminants, which are rich in nickel, may be mixed into the glass furnace. Nickel mixes with sulfur in the furnace, to make nickel sulfide. When the glass is tempered, these inclusions get trapped in the glass. Over time, these inclusions of nickel sulfide expand. When the expansion gets too much for the glass to bear, it breaks.
To avoid any such incidents, always buy your glass furniture from trusted manufacturers, which have a reputation in the market. Companies like these take special care of quality and their experience is evident in the form of their exceptional product design.
Glass Furniture Ideas
If you want some storage space on your walls, without making your room look crowded and small, glass shelves are for you. Not only do they look very modern and trendy, but they are also very durable, and easy to clean. Moreover, they are not that expensive and definitely worth the investment.
Glass coffee tables are the perfect furniture for your lounge, drawing room, or patio. Especially if you haven’t got a lot of space to spare. These tables are perfect because they don’t obstruct the view of the room, and make it look spacious. At the same time, any coffee stains are also quite easy to clean. Glass coffee tables are also perfect for gardens. Unlike wood, they won’t be affected by moisture and rain nor will they get infested with bugs. You can buy a complete glass table or buy a glass top with wood or metal legs.
Dining tables with glass tops have always been an all-time popular choice. This is because of their effortless modern look and the easy cleanup. These are also the perfect selection for people that don’t have a large dining room. However, the recent trend is dining tables with wooden tops and glass legs. These are very popular because they combine the warmth and elegance of wood along with the trendiness and innovation of glass. Also, this is perfect for people that want a wooden top as well as make their space look big.
You can read more about the pros and cons of a glass dining table here – Pros and Cons of a Glass Dining Table
Glass furniture is safe for use. While there is always a chance of the glass breaking, good quality glass breaks in harmless chunks as it has been tempered. In the end, if you want to make the most out of a small space, and can afford glass furniture, it is perfect for you. However, if you can’t afford it, or don’t want to clean frequently, wood or plastic might be the better choice. Take notes of all the pros and cons of glass furniture mentioned above before making your decision.