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From office cubicles to bathroom screens, glass wall partitions play many roles in modern home and office décor. A partition wall can be built from various types of glass and metal components, which means it can be customized to match specific needs and preferences.

What is a glass partition wall?

A glass partition wall is an interior wall structure made primarily of glass or a glass alternative. Glass panels are paired with metal framing, channel and/or clamps to create custom non load-bearing walls that can function as office dividers, bathroom partition walls, glass wall systems, and more. The glass partition wall has become especially popular in modern office design and is used in office cubicles, conference rooms, and entryways. However, these glass walls are also making their way into home décor…not only as toilet screens but as creative design solutions in small apartments and modern living spaces. Residential applications include living room walls, master bathroom walls, and accent walls.

What are the advantages of using a glass partition?

A glass partition wall offers a range of benefits:

  • Clear glass panels allow you to delineate separate areas without compromising the open, roomy feel of your space.
  • Fewer light fixtures are needed when the natural light coming in through windows can flow freely through a clear glass partition wall.
  • Clear office partitions boost transparency, communication with co-workers, and connection with clients.
  • Small homes and apartments feel larger when a clear glass partition wall is used instead of sheetrock.
  • Glass walls are space friendly, filling less floor space than a traditional structure.
  • Many glass wall systems are more easily moved or removed than their sheetrock counterparts.
  • Vision obscuring or opaque glass can also be used to create a unique partition wall that offers privacy or camouflages a room’s less attractive features.
  • Glass wall partitions can be customized to fit many different spaces and design ideas.
  • Glass resists staining and clear glass panels offer smooth surfaces that are easy to clean and sanitize.

What types of glass walls and glass partitions are available?

Glass partitions range from small privacy screens to extensive wall systems. They can be built from various types of glass and can be framed or frameless. Moreover, the size and configuration of the sheets of glass can be customized to fit many design schemes. Some of the most popular types of glass partition walls are glass panels, glass room dividers, and glass wall systems.

Glass Panels

Glass panels offer simple solutions to many design dilemmas. How can I keep a toilet from detracting from a bathroom’s spa-like vibes? Install a frosted, patterned, or back-painted glass wall panel that creates a private nook for the commode. How can I give employees separate work spaces without making claustrophobic office cubicles? Use clear glass panels to create modern office partitions. How can I create a separate lobby for clients without losing the natural light from my front windows? Have several glass panels installed to delineate the lobby, but use clear glass so that the natural light can still illumine the rest of your office.

Glass wall panels can be framed or frameless, and style options for the glass itself include:

  • Clear
  • Ultra-clear (low iron)
  • Patterned
  • Acid-etched (frosted)
  • Tinted
  • Back painted

While tempered glass is the most common choice for a glass wall panel, other options are available if there are concerns about durability or safety. These include laminated glass as well as Plexiglas, a type of acrylic sheeting that offers a glass-like appearance. It is also durable and will not form sharp shards if broken. Alternatively, opaque colored acrylic can also be used to create privacy partitions.

Room Dividers

Glass room dividers allow you to go beyond small glass cubicles and use larger glass wall dividers to create a modern office space or bright entryway. Glass room dividers give a commercial building an up-to-date feel and can even enhance productivity and morale. Glass wall partitions can also be used in restaurants and stores to mark off different areas without overly compartmentalizing the space. Likewise, these interior glass walls can be utilized in homes. For instance, a glass room divider can be used to divide a dining room and kitchen while retaining an open concept look and feel. Also, a single glass partition wall might be all that’s needed to separate a master bathroom from the rest of the master suite.

A number of configurations are possible for these glazed partitions. Examples include:

  • One large sheet of frameless glass.
  • A glass panel beside a glass door.
  • Glass panels flanking a glass door.
  • A number of glass panels installed adjacent to one another.
  • A metal frame filled with appropriately sized glazing.

Glass Wall Systems

An edgy, high-end look comes with installing a glass wall system in a home or office. More extensive than a simple room divider, a glass wall system allows you to make glass your material of choice for many or all of your interior walls. Glass wall systems usually include framed or frameless glass doors, and, like room dividers, they can be set up in many different ways. These interior glass walls make it possible to create “all glass” conference rooms, board rooms, living rooms, home offices, home gyms and more. These interior glass partition systems can be built with framed or unframed glass, and clear, privacy, or back painted glass may be used.

What is a frameless glass wall system and how does it work?

One of the most trendy glass partition options is the frameless glass wall system. Ideal for creating a modern meeting room or living area, this type of partition highlights panels of frameless glazing coming together to form sleek interior glass walls. These custom glass walls are used in areas of all shapes and sizes to create unique and beautiful spaces, such as this frameless glass wall system that ABC Glass and Mirror recently installed for one of its customers in Northern Virginia.

Frameless glass wall systems typically extend from floor to ceiling. Unobtrusive metal channel is fastened to the floor and ceiling and holds the glass panels in place. Sometimes the pieces of glass are slid into the upper and lower channels simultaneously from the side. In other situations, the top channel is deeper and wider than necessary, so that the glass can be inserted into it first and then maneuvered into the bottom channel. Since the top channel is extra deep, it still grips the glass once it is set in the base channel.

How are interior glass walls used in homes?

We’ve all probably seen glass wall partitions in offices or commercial settings, but in-home uses are less common. However, contemporary designers are putting both clear and privacy glass to work in their décor schemes. The use of one or more clear glass walls is a powerful tool for making any small or crowed space feel larger and more open. A transparent partition wall can also make open concept living space even more bright and airy. If privacy concerns exist, attractive curtains can also be installed; keep the curtains open most of the time for a spacious feel and draw them shut when a private space is desirable. Related Article: The Best Interior Glass Wall Ideas

On the other hand, privacy glass can be used to create a glass wall partition that makes the perfect screen for privacy or to hide a room’s less appealing elements. Acid-etched, patterned, and tinted glass give some privacy (acid-etched the most, tinted the least) but still allow light to pass through. Back painted glass is available in custom colors and is opaque colored glass that offers complete privacy. Examples of this type of application include:

  • Glass partition for a bathroom: full or half wall that creates private spaces in a family bathroom or hides the commode in luxurious master bath.
  • Small partition wall that keeps kitchen work space out of sight while preserving the continuity between dining room and kitchen.
  • Room divider to create separate spaces for siblings sharing a bedroom.
  • Opaque, colored acrylic panels to delineate a play area in a toddler’s room.

How much does a glass wall cost?

Like the size and shape of a glass partition wall, the cost varies greatly. Factors that impact glass wall cost include the following:

  • Type of partition – frameless or framed.
  • Style of glass – clear, ultra-clear, tinted, patterned, acid-etched, or back painted.
  • Type of glazing – tempered glass, laminated glass, Plexiglas acrylic sheeting.
  • Size of glass panels.
  • Number of glass panels.
  • Inclusion of a swinging, sliding, or rolling door.
  • Overall configuration and wall partition design.
  • Difficulty and complexity of measurement, design, and installation.

Prices can also fluctuate depending on your locale and the glass company with which you work.

Contact ABC for Details on Glass Wall Partition Options in Northern VA

For more detailed product and pricing info in the Northern Virginia region, ABC Glass and Mirror can be reached at (703)257-7150. In-house glaziers are available for a phone discussion, and prospective clients can also schedule a free consultation at their home or commercial site.