Building Codes
  • The UBC — Uniform Building Code — has specific requirements for the use of safety glass and for egress.
  • The theory behind the use of safety glass is just that — safety.
  • It is required where someone is most likely to slip and fall against the window, ie: running towards a door or falling in a bathroom.
  • Egress is established to allow a fireman to enter a bedroom window fully loaded with gear.
  • Some local jurisdictions have developed their own codes — check for these prior to making recommendations.
  • CAUTION: It is the customer's responsibility to check that local building codes are met.
Building Codes
  • Tempered or laminated glass must be used in the following locations:
  • Glazing in doors and enclosures for hot tubs, whirlpools, saunas, steam rooms, bathtubs and showers. Glazing in any portion of a building wall enclosing these compartments where the bottom exposed edge of the glazing is less than 60 inches above a standing surface and drain inlet.
  • Glazing adjacent to a door where the nearest exposed edge of the glazing is within a 24-inch arc of either vertical edge of the door in a closed position and where the bottom exposed edge of the glazing is less than 60-inches above the walking surface.
  • EXCEPTION: Tempered is not required when there is an intervening wall or other. permanent barrier located between the door and the glazing.
  • Glazing in fixed or operable panels, other than those locations described in the 2 items above, that meets all of the following conditions:
  • Exposed area of an individual pane greater than 9 square feet.
  • Exposed bottom edge less than 18 inches above the floor.
  • Exposed top edge greater than 36 inches above the floor.
  • One or more walking surfaces within 36 inches horizontally of the plane of the glazing.
  • EXCEPTION: Tempered is not required when a protective bar is installed on the accessible sides of the glazing 34 inches to 38 inches above the floor. The bar shall be capable of withstanding a horizontal load of 50 pounds per linear foot without contacting the glass and be a minimum of 1-1/2 inches in height.
  • Glazing in any hand railing regardless of height above a walking surface.
  • Glazing in walls and fences used as the barrier for indoor and outdoor swimming pools and spa when all of the following conditions are present:
  • The bottom edge of the glazing is less than 60 inches above the walking surface on the pool side of the glazing.
  • The glazing is within 5 feet of a swimming pool or spa deck area.
  • Glazing in walls enclosing stairway landings or within 5 feet of the bottom and top of stairways where the bottom edge of the glass is less than 60 inches above a walking surface.
  • NOTE: Refer to Section 2406 - Safety Glazing, 1994 Uniform Building Code for reference of the above information.
  • Skylights must be tempered or laminated glass.
  • Skylights must use laminated glass if:
  • More than 16 square feet OR
  • More than 12 feet above the floor.
  • All basement windows.
  • All bedrooms below the fourth story.
  • Minimum clear openable dimensions:
  • Width = 20"
  • Height = 24"
  • Area = 5.7 square feet
  • Finished sill height = 44" maximum
  • Rough opening height of sill = 42" maximum
  • NOTE: The minimum area requirement prevents you from using minimum height and minimum width on the same window.