Glaziers install glass in windows, skylights, and other fixtures in storefronts and buildings.
Glaziers typically do the following:
Follow blueprints or specifications
Remove any old or broken glass before installing replacement glass
Cut glass to the specified size and shape
Make or install sashes or moldings for glass installation
Fasten glass into sashes or frames with clips, moldings, or other types of fasteners
Add weather seal or putty around pane edges to seal joints
Glass has many uses in everyday life. For example, insulated and specially treated glass keeps in warm or cool air and controls sound and condensation. Tempered and laminated glass makes doors and windows more secure by making them less prone to breaking. The use of large windows, glass doors, and skylights makes buildings bright, airy, and inviting. Glaziers specialize in installing these different glass products.
In homes, glaziers install or replace windows, mirrors, shower doors, and bathtub enclosures. They fit glass for tabletops and display cases. On commercial interior projects, glaziers install items such as heavy, often etched, decorative room dividers or security windows. Glazing projects also may involve exterior work such as replacing storefront windows for supermarkets, auto dealerships, banks, and many other establishments.
For most large-scale construction jobs, glass is precut and mounted into frames at a factory or a contractor's shop. The finished glass arrives at the jobsite ready for glaziers to position and secure into place. Using cranes or hoists with suction cups, workers lift large, heavy pieces of glass for installation. In cases where the glass is not secure inside the frame, glaziers may attach steel and aluminum sashes or frames to the building, and then secure the glass with clips, moldings, or other types of fasteners.
Many windows are now being covered with laminates—a thin film or coating placed over the glass. These coatings provide additional durability, security, and can add color or tint to interior and exterior glass. The laminate also provides safety benefits by making glass less prone to shattering, which makes it ideal for commercial use in areas prone to high winds.
A few glaziers work with plastics, granite, marble, and other materials used as glass substitutes.