Staircase is not just a decoration of the house, but a necessity. It is impossible to go up and down the stairs without this structure. Two-story houses or multi-level apartments can’t do without the stairs. This inter-floor construction has two main functions: 1) connective; 2) decorative.
Material for the glass railings
As the staircase must be safe, it is usually equipped with the glass railings. This construction is both safe and modern, as durable glass has become the most popular material used for the protective staircase constructions.
Glass railings are made not of the common window glass but of the special durable and high-quality glass. There are following variants of material:
• Special tempered glass.
Common glass must undergo special treatment. While heating to the temperature of almost 700 degrees, the glass undergoes special treatment. After that, the material is evenly cooled at a quick pace. This is possible thanks to the use of cold air supplied to both sides of the glass. These simple tempering procedures result in the formation of residual compressive stress in the glass (namely in its surface layers). Thanks to such heating and cooling, the glass has significantly improved characteristics, namely:
- increased thermal resistance;
- improved strength;
- resistance to mechanical damage
In case of blow, the glass doesn’t break into the sharp splinters, but falls off in the form of shatters with blunt edges, which can’t hurt a human. However, it is difficult to break the glass with a sloppy move or by hitting it with a heavy object.
However, as any other material, glass has its own vulnerabilities. For example, if the blow falls on the end, the glass can be covered with the web-like cracks. Sometimes, such effect is created when manufacturing the unusual glass worktops or doors.
It is undesirable to use even small details of common glass in the staircase construction. They break easily and can harm a human.
The common material for building beautiful and safe railings for the stairs is triplex – the type of multi-layer glass that consists of several layers. Every layer is attached to each other with polymer foam or composite material. Triplex is characterized by high safety and reliability. In case of blow, interlaying between the glass layers holds back the fragments. They don’t fly off, and the triplex sheet just cracks. Using such material, designers can create the unusual design options of railings and handrails. Triplex products turn out very diverse, as, apart from glue for connecting the layers, they can include the means for decoration. These are the special fabrics, nets and films with drawings or patterns on a customer request. Such diversity leads to the higher price of the material used for manufacturing the railing details and steps.
As a part of the structure, triplex can be colorless, matt, mirrored or tinted.
- Frost-resistant glass. It is used for the railings, located outside the house.
- Armor-piercing glass. This bulletproof solution is relevant in the specialized institutions.
- Plexiglas. This includes acrylic glass. Apparently, acryl doesn’t differ from the common glass, but it is produced in the form of integral elements (sheets), which don’t have domestic channels with void. This material is considered the most economic.
Acryl has the following benefits:
- resistance to the chemical influences;
- it transmits light and sunrays;
- resistance to the atmospheric change;
- comparative lightness;
- durability and reliability.
- acrylic type can be drilled or painted; it is easy to cut and glue.
acrylic glass is highly flammable and easy to scratch.
Types of glass railings
There are several types of glass railings for the summer house or apartment:
- The most accessible and popular option is made in the form of classic rack construction. In this, the glass must be compatible with wood or metal, used for manufacturing the reliable racks.
Material for the racks must blend in with the room interior. Choose metal element for the high-tech and wood for classic or country:
- glass railings can be made in the form of solid sheet, connected to the hidden metal frame. In this construction, the glass is attached to the end of the stairs. To make the fixings invisible, you should mask them using the polished plate of stainless steel or wooden bars. Such glass railings for the country house will create the impression of lightness and add light to the room;
- point mounting to the end of the stairs. The benefit of this option is that point fixings allow you to maintain the size of the staircase. That is, the fastening is located outside the structure and therefore doesn’t occupy much space;
- all-glass structures. You should entrust the installation of structure to the professionals. Only then it will be high-quality and safe. In this case, the glass will serve not only as a decoration, but also as a basis for the building. In the photo, you can see that the steps, handrails and other elements are made of glass. Both point mounting and the use of special glue will be appropriate.
As mentioned earlier, the beautiful staircase will be the decoration of the house, surrounded by the other elements of interior (especially when it comes to the console stairs). Its structure doesn’t have visible supports, and the steps seem to be floating in the air.
The main benefits of this structure are:
- the steps take up little space, as they don’t have supports and handrails;
- streams of light transmit easily into the room;
- console stairs will decorate any interior;
- elegance and effectiveness.
Such staircase is not suitable for every house. Absence of handrails reduces its safety. Therefore, in the houses with children you should choose a safer option.
Design options for the glass railings
Design solutions for the glass railings can be very unusual. Material for the stair decoration can be as follows:
- matt glass;
- tinted option.
There are several ways of additional decoration, each of which significantly affects the durability of glass:
- photo print;
- facet edging;
- pasting with a pattern or a multi-colored film.
Another modern design technique is a decoration of staircase construction with a backlight. Lighting devices can be easily placed along the edge of the wall.
The chosen color can not only add originality to the whole staircase construction, but also change the interior of the room. Warm or cold colors will add the same qualities to the room.
To summarize, we should note that the price of the staircase construction with glass railings depends on the following characteristics:
- size of structure;
- material used for manufacturing handrails and racks;
- width of the glass elements;
- types of glass;
- quality of fittings for the glass railings;
- mounting method;
- way of finishing and decoration of the glass.
Besides this, the price may rise depending on the complexity of installation.