July 19, 2016

Can Toughened Glass be cut?

Written by Rebecca Clayton

Toughened Glass is not able to be cut, drilled or shaped once the toughening process has been completed. This is because toughened glass is specifically designed to distribute pressure and will crack and shatter if the tensions within the glass are broken. Therefore any toughened glass units must be cut to size and shape before the toughening process occurs.


Ashley Road Toughened Glass Sliding Glass Doors on our Ashley Road project.

How is Toughened Glass Made?

Toughened glass is made from float glass to help create an impact resistant, safety glass.

If float glass was to be broken, it would break into very sharp, hazardous pieces of glass. However, the process of toughening creates tensions in the internal surfaces of a glass panel to increase its strength and durability. This also ensures that if the glass were to break, it would break into small, harmless pieces of glass.

Safety Glass must be used for glazing in doors, any glazing that is adjacent to doors and low-level glazing. This is because these are the areas which are most likely to involve accidents due to glass breaking.

Mill Hill Toughened Glass Extension This contemporary extension illustrates the use of toughened glass perfectly.

When Does the Glass Cutting Occur?

Any shaped glass units, glass panels with cut outs or glass cut to non-square shapes must be done before glass arrives at the site before the toughening process happens.

The float glass is cut to your required shape and it is then placed in a toughening furnace where the toughening process occurs. The glass panels are then heated to 600 degrees and then cooled rapidly with cold air which toughens the glass to create a safety glass panel.

Floor to ceiling toughened glass Toughened Glass used in our Edge Hill project.

Uses of Toughened Glass:

Toughened glass is used in various ways, some of which include structural glass, glass floors, glass balustrades, walk on glass roof lights and glass doors. There are many benefits of using toughened glass, the main one being that it is four to five times stronger than float glass. Another benefit is that if the glass were to break, there would not be any large hazardous pieces of glass, only small harmless fragments that can easily be cleaned up.

Contact IQ Glass for more information:
01494 722 880