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What are the Pros and Cons of Colored Glass Blocks?

Sonal Panse
Sonal Panse

Colored glass blocks can add charm and beauty to the home decor aesthetics. They can also serve other important purposes such as letting in more natural light, offering security and privacy, and ensuring good insulation. Commonly, colored glass blocks are used to highlight walls in bathrooms, kitchens, sitting-rooms, bedrooms, basements and so on, and the blocks are also often installed as room dividers, stairway walls, door side lights, and shower, bathtub, and toilet screens.

The attractive effects that can be achieved are, of course, the main appeal of a glass brick architectural element. By using and juxtaposing different colored glass blocks in random or planned designs, it is possible to change the entire look and feel of an area. The blocks come in different sizes and thicknesses; custom-made blocks for particular requirements can also be ordered. The glass bricks are used as they are, without being painted over or given any other manner of additional treatment.

Woman with a flower
Woman with a flower

Natural light and privacy are equally important considerations when selecting colored glass blocks. Transparent colored glass blocks or those offering just the required amount of visual obscuration can be found in the market. For security concerns, there is an extra-strong, solid glass block type as well as a bullet-proof one, if required. An area done up in glass brick may need to be ventilated and this can be easily done by using ready made vent units. These only have to be inserted in place of some of the blocks.

As colored glass blocks are thick, they are capable of insulating the place, keeping moisture out and reducing noise pollution. The maintenance requirements of these blocks is quite minimal. A regular cleaning with a soft cloth and washing with soap and water or with a glass cleaner is generally sufficient to keep the blocks looking good. Using harsher detergents and metal cleaners is not recommended as there is a chance that these may scratch or otherwise adversely affect the glass.

It is important to understand that colored glass blocks are not generally able to bear loads. Before installing the blocks, it is necessary to ensure that they will have adequate structural support on all sides. The block installation should be carried out gradually, allowing the mortar in the bottom lines to settle and completely dry. If this is not done, the weight of the upper bricks is likely to cause the mortar in the lower joints to slip out, making the construction unsound and unstable.

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