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Buying Glass for Doors

If you’re considering a glazed entry door, you’ll have many glass options to choose from, including clear glass, etched glass, beveled glass, leaded glass, and many other ornamental glazings.

Glass for doors runs the gamut from plane panes to elegantly leaded and beveled varieties. Photo: Simpson

The windows in doors are generally referred to as “lites” or “lights.” Lites may be standard single glazed, or for greater energy efficiency, they may be dual glazed, or even triple glazed. High efficiency glazing may also utilize low-e or other energy-efficient coatings.

For maximum light, consider a door with a large glass area. For privacy and security, opt for one or two small sections of glass or decorative glazing that obscures the view into your house. If there is a possibility of ultraviolet (UV) damage to floors, rugs, and furniture, consider choosing a glazing that resists UV rays.

Our recommendations: Look for dual, low-e glazing and be aware that, if the window is leaded, real lead (or brass) caming (the lead bands between adjoining glass panes) is more expensive than false caming. Keep security and safety in mind. Some glass, such as Pease-Shield by Pease Industries, is highly resistant to breakage.

For more about the many types of glass available and how to select the right one, please see Window Glass Buying Guide.

About Don Vandervort
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Don Vandervort developed his expertise more than 30 years ago as Building Editor for both Sunset Books and Home Magazine. He has written more than 30 home improvement books and countless magazine articles. He appeared regularly on HGTV’s “The Fix,” and served as MSN’s home expert. Don founded HomeTips in 1996.

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