To begin, a balustrade is an architectural element with origins dating as far back as the 13th century and often comes in the form of ornamentation or decor. A glass balustrade is a more modern and contemporary take on these classical architectural pieces and helps give both homes and office spaces a sleek and elegant finish.
Glass balustrade prices depend on individual project requirements, where a single glass panel can cost anywhere between $20 – $150 per meter. Dimension is a major factor when it comes to determining the price of glass balustrades and costing is usually computed per foot or per meter along with material origin plus manufacturing and processing.
Though there is not really an arbitrary amount outside of what is accepted and used in the market, the dimensions combined with the modular set up of a single unit, that is to say, how big it would be and what it would look like, is what ultimately dictates the overall glass balustrade price and can cost less or more depending on the size and orientation of the area to be covered.
While glass balustrades certainly have their benefits over traditional steel or concrete ones, it is also important to take a look at the difference in pricing and how it is to be considered when engaging in a “which saves more” discussion.
Generally, on a cost-to-ratio scale, glass is more expensive because it is more difficult to produce. While Silicon, the basic element in glass creation, is more abundant than most naturally-occurring metals used to produce steel, the process of actually turning it into a glass then to temper it is very energy-intensive.
Where steel, wood, and even concrete is more malleable and easier to form into specific shapes, forming glass to meet architectural and structural specification requires the aid of specialized machines due to the processes’ complexity and precision needs.
As an example, say we’ll be using safety glass to make up 1 square meter of your balustrade and it will cost at least $320. That is a bit pricey, considering that this is the cost per panel and especially when you compare it to using stainless steel pipes instead which cost only about $2 per meter.
However, take note that most commercial steel materials have a minimum to purchase and for a mere meter of steel that would be used, you would still need to pay for the minimum of a thousand(1000) meters; suddenly, the cost spikes up to $2,000! Taking into account such factors, it is easy to see why a glass balustrade may appear to cost more than a non-glass one, but that will not always be the case.
As an investment, a glass balustrade might yield higher prices than what you might expect, but it is definitely more cost-efficient and would result in less wastage because of precise and exact manufacturing. While you do spend more initially, you also get more than your money’s worth in the end.