Traditionally in reference to the stained window panes often seen in churches, stained glass has over a thousand year history. These panes are painstakingly designed and assembled using metallic salts for coloring and led framing inserts, sometimes smaller than a dime, for the desired results.
Craftsman would dedicate tedious man hours to assembling stained glass window panes. Those found in the United States were mostly installed in churches throughout the 19th and early 20th centuries and in private homes to a lesser extent throughout the same era. As an indication of the times, these pieces of artwork are not the most efficient answers for windows.
There are, however, means of retaining historic stained glass as your windows without having to sacrifice efficiency. That’s because advances allow you to encase your stained glass in annealed glass without having to cover up or sacrifice the beauty of your original stained glass.
Annealed glass is the ultimate means of preserving stained glass while increasing efficiency. That’s because while it offers a transparent coating over your original stained glass it eliminates draft and betters protection from the elements. The hot glass slowly cooled over the original stained glass in this process not only insulates, it also better protects your fragile window pane from damage.
And damage to original window panes doesn’t only come from physical impact. Quick drops or peaks in temperature can also yield extensive damage to uninsulated window panes. A single pane of glass with an extreme temperature on one side and a completely different extreme temperature on the other side is under extreme stress, thanks to its thermal conductivity. This causes shifting with in the panes of your original and irreplaceable stained glass window, and subsequent cracking.
Craftsmen of 100-200 years ago dedicated painstaking man hours to crafting your perfect stained glass window, something they truly don’t make like they used to. Properly protecting it from the elements and damage is imperative to its longevity. If you aren’t annealing your stained glass windows, you’re just tempting fate and hanging them out to dry.