Glass balustrades make a beautiful, stylish balcony fence. They allow you to enjoy the view while offering a measure of protection from accidental falls. While they don’t do much in the way of privacy, you can choose tinted glass to give you a little more discretion.
If your budget allows it, get safety glass to prevent accidents. You can also get glass that’s thicker. It offers more protection and insulation. Glass balustrade Sydney can be framed or frameless, depending on your preference and price range.
Glass balconies, even if they’re frameless, usually have three main components: glass, metal, and rubber backing. The rubber is used to fasten the metal to the glass, while the metal parts hold up the glass. The metals used might be anodized aluminum or stainless steel.
Many times, the metallic frames of your glass balustrade will be powder coated. The coating adds aesthetic appeal, but it also prevents rust and mechanical damage. When you’re cleaning your balustrade, remember that the different parts need different maintenance.
For example, the rubber sections are sensitive to certain methods of cleaning. Some cleaning solvents can dissolve rubber, so if you’re using them on the glass, be careful that they don’t touch the rubber bushings. And whether you’re cleaning the glass, metal, or rubber sections, avoid abrasive products, since these can damage your fencing.
Cleaning products that have rough surfaces can scratch glass, scrape the paint off metal railings, and make cuts in rubber. Make sure you only use mild, non-abrasive detergents, and wipe the balustrade with a soft cloth and soft brushes. Never scrub.
If you live in an urban area, you can clean your balustrade every three months. Rural areas experience less traffic and build up less dirt so that you can clean the balustrade twice a year. If you live in a beach town, or if you’re up to a kilometer from the ocean, you should do a cold clean every month and a warm, clean twice a year to control the salt damage.
For daily maintenance, you can wipe your balustrade with a damp, soft cloth to remove surface dust. You can also wipe the glass with a window cleaner. On the occasions where you need to do a more thorough job, clean the glass, metal, and rubber individually.
Start with the frames. Wipe them with a wet sponge to get rid of loose surface dirt, targeting stained areas first. If there’s any dirt that hasn’t come off, use a soft brush and mild detergent to wash it off. If there are still stubborn bits of dirt and grime, dip a soft cloth in turpentine, white spirit, or kerosene and spot-clean them.
You might see a splash of paint or greasy spot and be tempted to dislodge it. Don’t use petrol, paint thinner, or stronger solvents, since they can dissolve the metal coating. Don’t use abrasive steel wool either, since removing the coating will damage the integrity of the metal.
As you clean the metal sections, remember than even mild solvents can melt rubber, and that excessive heat can harm both the rubber and the metal, so the water you use to clean shouldn’t’t be too hot. Preferably, use cool to warm water with mild soap.
The glass sections of the balustrade will need more attention. Don’t clean them on hot days, because the hot glass coming into contact with cold water can cause cracks. If the sun is out when you want to clean, wait until it cools. Even if it doesn’t’t break the glass, the sun’s heat can cause water marks, which just gives you more cleaning to do.
To clean your glass panels, pour cool water on both sides to rinse off any dirt. If there are dirty spots, wipe them off with a soft cloth dipped in glass-cleaning fluid or mild detergent. If you’ve applied any soap, rinse again with clean water to get rid of any residue. Dry the glass with a soft cloth to get rid of water stains and soap streaks.
Some cleaners advise that you should finish off by buffing the glass with crinkled newspaper. This is unnecessary and can lead to extra work. The newspaper disintegrates when moist so that it can leave paper clumps on the glass. The newsprint ink may also stain the glass, producing streaks that you’ll have to re-clean. Just stick to soft micro fiber as your finishing touch.