A Clear Difference: Why Low-Iron Glass Is the Designer’s First Choice

A Clear Difference: Why Low-Iron Glass Is the Designer’s First Choice 1

Whether it’s a posh downtown office or a residential kitchen, architects and designers consistently rely on glass to create one of a kind experiences.

Glass is a multi-purpose material which not only improves the quality of lighting, but it can also make a space feel bigger. Back painted glass and inserts provide nearly unlimited options and are often the perfect accent pieces. But what many people fail to realize when they are making purchasing decisions, is that what is commonly labeled as ‘clear glass’, is really anything but.

Clear glass is often used in case goods and furniture. This product is made from a formula that contains a high amount of iron. The chemical makeup gives the final product a very distinct green tint which is especially noticeable on exposed edges. This makes clear glass a poor choice for back painted or backlit applications where its natural greenish hue can clash with color schemes.

For ultimate clarity, professionals rely on low-iron glass.

Low-iron glass uses a formula that contains a much lower amount of iron, and while it is impossible to avoid iron in commercial glass completely, low-iron glass provides for an incredibly transparent product with only a very slight blue tint. Low-iron glass is made from low-iron silica sand and has a ferric oxide content of .01 percent, while most clear glass has about 10 times that amount. This is important because it allows for better color neutrality, more natural light, and edges that are clear.

Color-matching matters, and low-iron glass has better light transparency. For instance, there might be a real issue with a bright orange room bathed in green light. In commercial applications, this can have a very real impact on ROI as corporate offices spend hundreds of thousands on just the right décor–getting the right ambience means that everything blends together favorably.

Even a simple merchandising window can be made more appealing with low-iron glass. Better product displays mean more sales, period. Customers want to get a clear mental picture of what they are about to purchase, and improving that experience is worth every dollar.

Element Designs uses only low-iron glass in our back painted applications, and we strongly recommend low-iron glass for any backlit projects as well. Your project is our project, and we want to help you create spaces that make a difference. If you are interested in learning more about some of our glass options, feel free to contact us here.

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