If you’re a fan of laminated windows, then today is your lucky day! We’re going to look a little closer at an often-overlooked product that, despite its relatively low level of popularity (it isn’t every day that you talk about laminated windows at the dinner table), has been responsible for countless saved lives and a dramatic reduction of injuries. Laminated glass is essentially safety glass. It is ordinary glass (in almost all circumstances the glass used has already been strengthened through the annealing process) with a twist… it is laminated! So, what’s all the fuss about laminated windows? Well, laminated windows are ideal for situations where window strikes are more likely (for example, windows near golf courses or a car windshield). This particular breed of window is not only more durable, but also less likely to shatter and send dangerous shards into the home or office. To help frame up what exactly a laminated window might be, let’s rewind to fifth grade. Come on, we’ve all been there; and, although some of us don’t want to go back, for the sake of better understanding, lets all go. Ok, now that we’re here, remember if you will, that report on frogs, or Scotland, or whatever it was that you reported on. Chances are, you or someone in the class had some part of the project laminated to look super-duper professional. Well, now fast-forward to your current station in life, picture a piece of glass in place of that paper (only the laminate is actually sandwiched between two pieces of glass), then slap that piece of glass in an aluminum window or vinyl window frame, and bingo! You’ve got yourself a laminated glass window. Now, obviously there is a bit more to the whole process than simply asking your fifth grade teacher to laminate it for you. There are industrial sized machines that follow exacting specifications to adhere a laminate between the treated panes of glass. Regardless, the core principal is the same whether you’re looking at the window manufacturing industry or the fifth grade report-giving world.
Not to beat a dead horse into the ground, but laminated windows just seem to have so much to be told about them. Aluminum windows and vinyl windows with the added protection of laminated glass within them are definitely getting the spotlight these days. Before we move on to bigger and better topics, we wanted to touch back on laminated glass to share a few more interesting factoids. Did you know that the laminate used between the panes of glass in a laminated window is called polyvinyl butyral (PVB)? Did you know that the tint at the top of some car windshields is actually tinted by colored PVB? Did you know that laminated glass, aside from being used widely in the window manufacturing industry and the auto industry, was also used in the eyepieces of gas masks in World War I? If you knew these little tidbits, then pat yourself on the back. If you didn’t, then enjoy those morsels of window manufacturing and glass manufacturing knowledge.
Leaving laminated windows in the dust, we’re going to move on to a new window manufacturing glossary term. This time we’re going to talk about Interlockers. An interlocker is basically an upright frame member in a panel of a sliding glass door. This upright frame member essentially engages with a similar part on the other door panel. This helps to provide a strong seal to prevent any air leakage. There isn’t a lot to say about this particular member of the sliding glass door, as its function is pretty basic and self-explanatory. If you’re ever in a bind trying to remember how in the world an interlocker fits into the window-manufacturing world, just think of what the name makes it sound like it does. That should get you pretty close.