Glass balustrades or fencing systems are a good choice for balconies, or for any home with a view that you want to keep open and unobstructed. Glass can also help to block bothersome wind, something to consider if you often eat on your balcony or have a fire pit on your deck, as too many stiff breezes can interfere with your enjoyment of both! If you're thinking of getting glass balustrades installed along a balcony, deck or any area on your property, note a few questions you might have about these features, so you can discuss your options with a fencing contractor.

Why are there always gaps between panels? 

A frameless glass balustrade system will include small gaps between panels, to allow for heat expansion. This can be especially important in tropical areas or places that get lots of sunlight. This gap should be very tiny so that it doesn't let in annoying breezes or create a hazard for pets or children to get paws and fingers stuck. However, if you don't like the look of these gaps, opt for a framed glass balustrade; the frame around the glass panels will usually have room for that expansion, but will also cover the gap.

Can you sit on the glass?

Obviously, you should never sit on a balcony railing, but if you're having a glass fence installed around a deck or other such area, ask about the weight limits for that glass. In most cases, the glass balustrade shouldn't serve as a sitting area and will withstand only so much weight; however, if you have active children whom you know might play on or around the rail or need the glass to be stronger than usual for any reason, ask about toughened or laminated glass, for added durability.

Are the railings always metal?

Frames around glass balustrades or the rail attached at the top are often aluminium since this material doesn't rust or corrode and won't add much weight to the railing. However, a fencing contractor can often offer other materials for your balustrade frame or rail, including wood. While this can make your glass balustrade more to your own style, note that wood may require more maintenance over time, as it will absorb moisture and then expand and shrink, causing it to cup and bow. The colour of wood may also be more likely to fade when exposed to the elements. Consider your options carefully if aluminium is not your first choice of frames or railing for your glass balustrade.