3900 N Island Hwy, Nanaimo
Mon-Fri: 8-4:30 & Sat-Sun: Closed
27 May 2021
how to clean a glass shower

How To Clean A Glass Shower

5 Ways to Keep Your Glass Shower Sparkling Clean

Your shower is a place to refresh, wake yourself up, ease aching muscles or just enjoy a few luxurious minutes to yourself.

However, there’s nothing more frustrating than having your beautiful, shiny glass shower door stained with dried water marks. It can be even more frustrating when the steps you take to clean it just don’t seem to work.

So how can you put that sparkle and shine back into your shower glass?

There are many different products, hints, tips and old wives’ tales out there, offering a multitude of solutions. Here are some suggestions that the team at Budget Glass recommends you try when trying to clean your shower glass.

Five Ways To a Clean Shower

  1. White Vinegar and Baking Soda – If you prefer a natural solution over a chemical product then this is a good option. The vinegar dissolves watermarks while the baking soda acts as an abrasive cleaner for stubborn stains. You’ll likely have the ingredients you need on hand in your pantry.
  • Wet shower glass with water
  • Spray thoroughly with white vinegar
  • Leave to soak for 10 minutes
  • Dip a soft cloth or sponge into baking soda and scrub the glass
  • Rinse with water and thoroughly dry with a soft microfibre cloth
  1. Lemon Juice – Another natural solution that is simple and easy to make at home. Lemon juice is good for removing lighter cases of soap scum build-up, and it smells better than vinegar too!
  • Add 3 tablespoons of lemon juice to 1 cup of water in a spray bottle
  • Spray glass and wait 5 minutes
  • Wipe clean with a sponge and dry with microfibre cloth
  1. Ammonia – This chemical is effective at breaking down grease and grime and dries fast and streak-free, making it popular in glass cleaning products. Keep in mind ammonia can be dangerous if not used correctly. Make sure you ventilate the room well and never mix ammonia with bleach as it can create toxic gasses.
  • Mix 2 tablespoons of ammonia with 2 quarts of warm, distilled water in a large spray bottle.
  • Spray onto glass, wait 3 minutes
  • Wipe dry with a microfibre cloth
  1. Dryer Sheets – Although designed to soften fabric; damp dryer sheets magically transform into glass shower cleaners, as the softener in the sheet breaks down soap scum stains.
  • Dampen fabric dryer sheet and use to wipe over glass doors and walls
  • Rinse door well after use and buff with a microfibre cloth
  1. Store Bought Chemical Product – Of course, there are many products available in your local hardware or grocery store which can be used to clean shower glass and the rest of your bathroom. Some work better than others, and some also include extra benefits like mould and mildew removers.

Note: When using cleaning products and DIY solvent solutions, be careful to remove all cleaning materials from all silicone sealants, as these can break down the bond over time.

 

Daily Maintenance Will Keep Your Shower Glass Looking Brand New

Now your shower glass looks fresh and fantastic again, how do you keep it that way? A daily post-shower cleaning routine is the first step, but there are also some more permanent solutions available too.

A Simple Post Shower Cleaning Routine

The key to preventing soap scum and water stains from building up is to make sure the shower glass is cleaned after every use. Removing excess water and product from the glass right away will stop it from drying and creating streaks or spots on the glass. This is particularly helpful if your home has hard water. Routinely keeping your doors and walls dry will also help keep mildew and mould at bay and keep your home healthier overall.
Try the following post-shower clean routine:

  • Keep a squeegee in the shower and use it on all glass as soon as you are finished your shower
  • Spray with a daily cleaner. You can make your own by placing ½ cup rubbing alcohol, ½ cup hydrogen peroxide, 1 tablespoon dishwasher rinse aid and 1 teaspoon dish soap in a 32oz spray bottle. Top it up with water and it’s good to go.
  • Wipe down with a soft microfibre cloth and leave the door open so air can circulate and dry the glass.

Add Long Term Protection to Your New Glass

Hydrophobic coatings can be applied to shower glass. These actually repel water and product from the glass, keeping it cleaner for longer.

At Budget Glass all of our glass shower doors come with the option of adding ClearShield, a hydrophobic coating that protects glass from the build-up of dirt, limescale, water spots and mildew. Ask how you can add this to your new shower and spend more time relaxing in the shower and less time cleaning.

To protect your investment, we also recommend using specialty cleaners to repel and remove unsightly, stubborn glass stains. In addition to ClearShield, we also supply high-quality CRL cleaning products, like CRL Surface Protector to repel stains and CRL Sparkle to remove stubborn stains. These products can be used instead of, or in addition to the DIY solutions listed above.

 

Call Budget Glass Today For Your New Shower Needs

If you try all of the above ideas and your shower still isn’t looking like an inviting place to get clean, you may want to consider a new or replacement glass shower door, walls or a bath surround from Budget Glass.

We carry a wide range of options to suit any taste or size of bathroom, with your choice of clear, tinted or obscured glass and metal finishings to match your existing décor. When you have a beautiful and clean glass shower or bath surround, your bathroom can be your sanctuary again, your place to unwind and refresh … and get ready to clean the rest of your house! Based in Nanaimo, we’ve been serving the whole central island since 1983 as full-service glass experts. Our friendly and knowledgeable team at Budget Glass can be reached at (250) 758-3374. You can also easily contact us via email for all your household, commercial and automotive glass needs.

16 Sep 2020
15 Cool Ways to Use Mirrors in Your Home

15 Cool Ways to Use Mirrors in Your Home

Use Custom Mirrors to Light Up and Expand Your Space

Mirrors are one of the most forgiving ways to add style to a space. They do double duty by bringing in more light and adding a more open feel at the same time. Unlike windows, mirrors can easily be moved to update their reflection and effect on a room.

Ask any interior designer and they’ll tell you that one of the best ways to bring more light into a space is to add a mirror. Size and placement matters of course, but mirrors are such a forgiving addition to home décor that it’s hard to go wrong. Mirrors are simple to keep clean with a feather duster and a spritz of glass cleaner now and then, and the variety of sizes and shapes available make it easy to match your personal style.

At Budget Glass, we offer custom standard or beveled edge mirrors, as well as a variety of sizes ranging from 18×24 to 36×72. Choose from clear mirrors, tinted mirrors or even an etched design.

High-quality mirrors from Budget Glass are ideal for use in bathrooms, on closet doors, workout rooms, outdoor spaces and more.

15 Ways to Use Mirrors in Your Home

  1. Use in place of artwork – Instead of hanging yet another print or painting, hang a mirror! Framed or unframed, ornate or simple, it will add light to a dim room and help anchor the furniture.
  2. Use on adjacent walls – Let mirrors play off each other to brighten up a space. This will help a room (like a bedroom) feel more spacious.
  3. Use outdoors in a small patio or yard to add the feeling of more space Place a mirror at an angle that will reflect greenery or blue skies. You can even grow a vine around it for a “secret garden” feel.
  4. Use at the end of a narrow hallway to bring in more light and make it feel more spacious – Use a single large mirror to avoid a funhouse mirror effect.
  5. Hang a small framed mirror by the front door – Use it for a quick check before you leave the house. You can also add a full-length mirror for a complete once-over.
  6. Frame a mirror with a deep square or rectangular frame – This creates a mirror that will do double duty as a shelf.
  7. Add an ornate or framed mirror to a gallery wall Mix an attractive mirror in with artwork to add more visual interest to the space.
  8. Group similar sized mirrors together for a fun look Circle shaped mirrors are great for this since they can be hung in virtually any configuration without the design getting too picky.
  9. Place a mirror in between windows to add the illusion of additional windows If a window is oddly placed (talk to us, we can help solve your window problems) you can add balance to the room by “faking” it with a mirror.
  10. Add a framed mirror with a pop of colour – Bring instant visual interest to a bedroom, kitchen or living space. A bright red, cobalt blue or sunny yellow can add vibrancy to your home.
  11. Use a mirror as a centrepiece above a mantel – This adds instant style and as with furniture, will anchor the mantle as a focal point whether you prefer clean lines, an ornate metal framed piece, or anything in between.
  12. Add drama with oversized or floor to ceiling mirrors – This works especially well to open up a small bathroom.
  13. Add a mirror adjacent to something you want to see reflected – If used outdoors, it could reflect a water feature. Indoors, it could reflect a window or a favourite piece of art.
  14. Create an eye-catching pattern or mosaic – Play with shapes and textures and create an eye-catching design for that special place in your home.
  15. Let a mirror do double duty as a timepiece – A useful clock-turned mirror with clean lines is a thing of beauty.

 

Tips for Decorating with Mirrors

  • Hang mirrors at about eye level, with the center of the frame no less than 48-50” from the floor. If you’re very tall, hang the mirror so the centre point is around 65” from the floor.
  • When used as wall décor, mirrors should be two-thirds the size of the wall it is hanging on, or of the piece of furniture that it’s above.
  • Hang the mirror so the bottom is about 2-4” from the top of the shelf or furniture, so it appears as a cohesive part of the scene you’ve created with furniture and décor items.
  • Consider what the mirror will reflect. As well as adding visual interest, whatever the mirror reflects should make you smile when you see it.
  • Heavy mirrors should be hung by professionals. Our team at Budget is experienced with these more delicate installations.
  • If you’re DIY’ing the mirror installation, ensure that it’s straight by using a laser or bubble level. Mark the placement with a pencil before drilling any holes.
  • Use a wall hanger or picture hook on each end so the mirror will hang flat to the wall.

When you need custom mirrors created to fit a specific room in your home, the glass experts at Budget can help. We provide and install mirrors for a variety of spaces, offer a variety of pre-cut sizes and can cut custom sizes complete with openings for fixtures and outlets. Contact our staff today to discuss sizing, texture and placement for your custom mirror.

14 May 2020
benefits of natural light in your home

4 Benefits of Natural Light for Your Home or Office

Natural Light Not Only Looks Good, It Feels Good Too!

 

There’s a reason why builders of new homes and modern office buildings choose to install those stunning floor-to-ceiling windows – and it’s not just to make the building look good or take advantage of a gorgeous view. Installing tons of windows also means letting in tons of natural light, which provides numerous benefits to the building’s future occupants.

So, whether you’re building a new home or office, or you’re updating your home’s existing windows and doors, here are 4 reasons you should plan for maximizing the amount of natural light coming into your residential or commercial space.

 

1. Boosts Your Mood

Natural light is proven to have a positive effect on your mood and ward off depression. This can be seen with the overwhelming amount of people who experience Seasonal Affective Disorder in the winter. The theory is that sunshine makes people happier, and that without enough natural light coming into your spaces, things can feel dreary and stuffy, which ultimately brings a person down.

 

2. Boosts Your Productivity

Several studies have shown that natural lighting boosts productivity in the workplace. One such study by Future Workplace reported that out of more than 1,500 survey respondents, 47% of employees admitted that they feel “tired or very tired from the absence of natural light or a window at their office, and 43% report feeling gloomy because of the lack of light.”

This might have to do with the fact that natural light is the best source for vitamin D (the “sunshine vitamin”), which is known to be a natural energy booster, hence, the increased productivity levels. The boost in productivity could also be the result of the better night’s sleep people have the night before – another notable benefit of natural light is sleeping better at the end of the day.

If you’re planning a renovation that can accommodate larger windows in the office or boardroom, your staff and clients will thank you!

 

3. Easier on the Eyes

Too much artificial lighting can be tough on a person’s eyes, especially when combined with a lot of screen time. Certain types of older artificial lighting can cause a person to strain their eyes more without even noticing, which can lead to headaches, dry eyes, and even weaker vision over time. Such artificial lighting can even cause some people to have elevated stress responses.

We recommend supplementing artificial light with as much natural lighting as you can to reduce this eye strain. This is especially true in spaces where children and young adults frequent, as the natural lighting ends up supporting their healthy eye development.

 

4. Energy savings

Another great reason to add more natural lighting to your residential or commercial setting is that you’ll be required to spend less on your electricity bills. This is because you’ll be running less lights less often, and because natural light, when it’s entering the building through modern, energy-efficient windows and glass, will help control your indoor temperature.

A significant amount of energy you use at home, at your business, and at your office goes towards lighting, heating, and cooling, so by adding more natural light to your space, you’ll likely notice a drop in your monthly operating expenses. The key here will be making sure windows are installed properly, without drafts, and that windows are at least double pane.

 

How to Add More Natural Light to Your Space

There are plenty of ways to bring in more natural light into your interior living spaces, such as:

  • Mirrors: Adding more mirrors can leverage the light that’s already coming in.
  • Paint Colours: Switching your paint colour to white or off white can have a drastic effect, as can switching to lighter coloured flooring, cabinetry, and accent rugs.
  • Ditch the Drapes: Try taking down the drapes completely or switching to a sheer fabric window covering. Pull up the blinds every once in awhile and let the light shine in!
  • Skylights: If your top floor can accommodate them, consider professional skylight installation. Note that for skylights, positioning matters. South-facing skylights could lead to the overheating of a room, whereas north-facing skylights are your best bet for softer, continuous light throughout the day.
  • Patio Doors: If your layout accommodates it, consider knocking out part of a wall to accommodate a slider door or French double doors to your back yard or deck.
  • Front Doors: Swap out your plain front door to a door with a full window panel. Or, if you can expand the width of your main entrance, switch to a door frame that has window transoms down each side and along the top of the door.
  • Larger Windows: If you’re already thinking about updating your old windows, why not see if you can make one or two of them even larger during the process? Professional glass installers can advise you if an expansion of your existing window frame would be possible.
  • Additional Windows: If your existing windows are in great shape, maybe there is an opportunity to install an additional window somewhere, like in a corner bedroom or in the kitchen if you can sacrifice a cabinet or two.

 

Too Much of a Good Thing?

While natural light comes with all the above mentioned benefits, it’s important to note that too much solar energy radiation beaming into a room can harm the occupant’s skin and eyes. Powerful UV rays can also fade furniture and carpeting after awhile, while untreated windows that are south facing can actually overheat a room, causing it to need more AC.

To protect against these issues, and significantly reduce cooling costs in the summer, consider installing windows with low-e coatings or reflective glass. Either of these options will help make your home more energy efficient while providing the benefits of natural light.

 

If you are interested in increasing the natural lighting in your home or business, Budget Glass in Nanaimo is here to help. We have several different window and glass styles and solutions for you to choose from and we are happy to advise during every step.

 

We always guarantee the quality of our products and installation, ensuring your glass work is done on time and on budget. Call Budget Glass at (250) 758-3374 for a free quote on new windows, window renovations, skylights, patio doors, and more! You can also schedule an appointment online. We look forward to hearing from you!

29 Apr 2020
how to remove water spots from windows

Tips & Tricks for Removing Water Spots from Glass

How to Treat and Prevent this Common Window Problem

The one thing worse than a window with smudges or dirty fingerprints is a window that’s constantly covered in water spots. If you strive for clean windows every day at your home or business, you might find that you’re constantly battling water spots, which are left behind by the minerals in rain, snow, or your garden’s sprinkler.

Luckily, removing water spots and preventing them from happening again and again is easy! Just follow these tips from the glass experts at Budget Glass in Nanaimo to have your windows shining 24/7.

But before you going through all that effort to remove water spots, it’s a good idea to identify them as such, and think about what might be causing them in the first place.

What are Water Spots?

Water spots are what get left behind when hard water that contains minerals (e.g. calcium and magnesium) is left to dry on a glass surface rather than being dried off with a cloth or squeegee. As the water dries and evaporates, the minerals get left behind on your window or glass panels.

Windows and glass with water spots appear grimy and dirty. Affected windows will look dusty, as if they have a film that is patterned or dotted with whitish circles, depending on the source of the water. They are common on windshields, glass shower doors, glass patio tabletops, household windows, and commercial storefronts.

What Causes Water Spots on Windows?

Common causes of water spots on windows and glass include:

  • Rainwater
  • Snow
  • Showers
  • Sprinklers
  • Leaking Gutters

Preventing Water Spots

Addressing some of the common causes of water spots will help you reduce their occurrence. For example, you can add awnings to windows that need a bit more protection from the elements, fix your leaking gutters, and re-position your sprinklers, and voila!

You can also apply a rain repellent product to your windows. Other things to consider adding to older windows is a glass sealant or some carnauba paste wax. One commercially available product we always recommend is Surface Protector – a transparent polymer coating that protects windows and other surfaces against buildup by actually sealing the pores of the glass. This multi-purpose product also works on porcelain, ceramic, plastics, polished metals, fiberglass, and marble to make the surface water, soil, and stain resistant.

These treatments work by causing rainwater to roll off the windows instead of beading up on the surface. With no rain clinging to your windows, there is no mineral residue left behind to leave a mark.

If you’re thinking about upgrading your windows soon, ask about factory-applied treatments that assist with this issue.

How to Clean Water Spots

Because they are actually minerals and not dirt, water spots are actually alkali, so using an acid to remove them is recommended.

To deal with your existing water spots, check out our top 5 suggestions for removing water spots from windows:

Vinegar

This is a classic window cleaning trick, no matter what type of marks you’re dealing with. Simply mix a solution of equal parts water and white distilled vinegar. Spray onto windows, thoroughly saturating the more problematic areas. Wait a full two minutes, then use a small, rough towel that has also been saturated with the vinegar and water solution to gently scrub the glass. Dry with a soft cloth, paper towel, or even newspaper. Repeat this process as necessary until all the water marks are gone.

You can also use a higher concentration of vinegar if the water spots are severe.

Lemons

Lemons also work to remove water spots, as the citric acid easily neutralizes the hard minerals. To use the lemon method of removing water spots, simply slice a lemon in half, then rub it on the glass using a fair bit of pressure. Dry off the lemon juice left with a soft cloth or paper towel (no need to rinse). For the most streak-free shine possible, finish off with just a touch of glass cleaner.

You can also use lemon or orange essential oil to remove water spots if you don’t have fresh lemons handy. Just mix several drops in some water and apply as a glass cleaner. This solution has the added benefit of the residual oil preventing (repelling) future water sports from forming.

Baking Soda

Baking soda is another great way to neutralize and melt away hard minerals left on windows after it rains. To use this method, make a paste out of baking soda and a tiny amount of water. Use a cloth to apply the paste to the window. Wipe with enough pressure until the baking soda removes the hard water spots. Next, you’ll need to thoroughly rinse the glass with water. Finish off with traditional glass cleaner to remove any remaining residue and streaks from the window.

Commercial Glass Cleaners

There are several commercial cleaning products on the market that have the specific, marked purpose of removing water spots. Simply follow the directions found on the label of whichever product you’ve chosen. Some products may leave streaks, so a final once-over with a window cleaner might be required.

Sparkle Cleaner is one of our favourite commercially available water spot removers. It’s perfect for removing water stains that are too tough for regular cleaning products to handle. Pick some up from our storefront, or have us bring you some on our next trip over. You’ll find that this product is especially effective on your glass shower doors, glass deck railings, and vehicle windshields – in addition to your home’s windows.

Hard water spots can be an unsightly pain to deal with sometimes, especially if you’re maintaining a storefront window day after day. If this sounds like you, Budget Glass in Nanaimo can help! Call us today at (250) 758-3374 to ask about our water spot resistant glass windows and panels. You can also schedule an appointment online to inquire about replacement windows or glass.

12 Dec 2019
how to clean up broken glass

Tips & Tricks for Cleaning Up Broken Glass

6 Ways to Clean Up Broken Glass Safety and Effectively

It doesn’t matter if the sound came from a dropped dinner plate, a knocked over wine glass, or a tree branch coming through a window – hearing glass smash is always a cause for concern. Because even a small bit of broken glass can become a safety hazard for people in the proximity. Another reason for concern? If you hear broken glass before you see broken glass, you don’t know exactly what has broken – or how. And if you see it break, you still don’t quite know where all the pieces have landed until you’re able to get down for a closer inspection.

Fortunately, there’s more than one way to clean up broken glass, without contaminating your regular household broom!

But first, safety! When approaching a pile of broken glass, you can never be too careful to avoid the sharp, dangerous mess. No sudden movement – don’t go straight for the mess. First, make sure everyone near the smashed glass carefully backs away from the area. If there are people without shoes on, everyone should play it safe and stand still until the designated cleanup person acts. If that person happens to be you, for safety’s sake, reach for a pair of rubber gloves if you have them, then get to work!

Here are 6 clever hacks for cleaning up broken glass around your house. Simply reach for whatever is closest to get the job done. The following tips work well once the largest pieces have been picked up and discarded.

1. Damp Paper Towel

Fold a few pieces of paper towel, dampen, and then gently press down on the pile of broken glass. The broken glass should all stick to the damp paper towel that’s protecting your hand. Simply dispose of the paper towel, and the job is done! The damp paper tower trick is also great at safely packaging up the shards for the garbage can.

2. Bread

If you don’t have a roll of paper towel, but you have a couple slices of bread, use them much like you’d use the paper towel, by gently pressing the slices of bread into the glass. Bread is soft and moist, which are both elements that attract and hold the broken glass. White, brown, or multigrain – it’s all good to go!

3. Potatoes

Use a large raw potato cut in half lengthwise to pick up glass shards from the floor. The potato’s moist flesh acts just like the bread or damp paper towel would have. Potatoes go after even the tiniest pieces, and of the 3 methods mentioned on this list so far – protect your hands the best. Toss the potato when finished, then check the floor for any starchy residue left behind.

4. Tape

As you’d imagine, tape – either masking tape or duct tape – works just as well as the above mentioned methods. To use tape to clean up broken glass, simply wrap your gloved hand with tape several times, sticky side out. Then brush up the glass with your taped, gloved hand. Duct tape is strongest but any kind of tape will do.

5. Vacuum

A vacuum can be used to help clean up any lingering shards of glass near and on the carpet. In fact, if you suspect there could be broken glass hiding in the piles of your carpet, a vacuum is essential here, used only after you’ve carefully picked up the pieces big enough for you to see. Go forwards and backwards to ensure all pieces are collected!

After vacuuming, clean out the dust compartment or replace the bag right away, instead of waiting until it’s full. You want that broken glass to become a distant memory!

6. Dedicated Broom & Dustpan

If you work, live, or play where there is a higher chance of broken glass, consider having a dedicated dustpan and broom on hand to use for cleaning up broken dinnerware and windows. This is instead of risking getting glass caught in your normal household broom and inadvertently spreading it throughout the house the next time you do a regular sweep.

Additional Tips for Cleaning Up Broken Glass

  • If the only thing around you is your regular household broom, be sure to thoroughly rinse it after each time you use it to clean up broken glass.
  • Broken glass can travel much farther than you might realize. Always look beyond the area where the glass has broken, by about 15 feet. Move furniture if need be to ensure you’ve gotten every last piece.
  • Broken glass should always be disposed of mindfully. Either wrap it in newspaper or other padding, and take out the trash immediately after cleaning up the glass. This is to avoid other members of the household or your coworkers from using their hands or feet to create more space in the trash.
  • Consider keeping broken glass separate from the regular trash altogether if your municipality has a facility for glass recycling.
  • Remember to clean off the soles of your shoes or slippers!

Finally, once you’ve finished cleaning up the broken glass and otherwise securing the area, you’ll need to eventually get the glass replaced if it was a window or door, or otherwise essential to your home or business’s sense of safety, security, and comfort. Call Budget Glass Nanaimo for help repairing and replacing your broken glass.

For emergency glass repair in the Central Vancouver Island, called Budget Glass Nanaimo at (250) 755-6901.

If your glass repair job isn’t time sensitive, schedule an appointment online with one of our glass specialists, or call us during regular business hours at (250) 758-3374.

15 Nov 2019
foggy windows need replacing

Foggy Windows

3 Reasons Why Your Windows are Foggy (And What You Can Do About It)

Windows Keep Fogging Up? Here’s Why:

In this blog post, we’ll go over the three main reasons your home’s windows appear foggy, and outline several ways you can fix foggy windows.

What Are Foggy Windows?

Foggy windows are windows that appear to be wet due to water droplets that have built up on or inside the window. Sometimes the moisture present can be so prevalent that it looks like a fog has formed and you can no longer see through your windows. The culprit? Condensation that occurs when humid air meets a cool surface, or when there is a large temperature differential between the indoors and the outdoors. During this time, water in the air (humidity) starts to collect on cooler surfaces.

What Causes Foggy Windows?

There are 3 main ways condensation makes your windows appear foggy:

  • Condensation on the exterior of the window. This is simply a product of the morning dew or when the A/C is running high and the temperature inside is much lower than the temperature outside. Exterior condensation can occur on both single-pane and double-pane units.
  • Condensation on the interior of the window. This is simply the humidity of your home (moisture from cooking, showering, and occupants breathing) being drawn to your windows. Interior condensation can occur on both single-pane and double-pane units.
  • Condensation trapped in between your windowpanes. This happens with aging double-pane units and is usually the result of a broken seal. In this case, condensation from the early morning dew and your home’s humidity is seeping in and getting trapped inside your once-sealed double-pane windows.

What Can You Do About Foggy Windows?

Exterior Condensation

Foggy windows that are the result of condensation from the outdoors will clear up on their own, after the morning chill is gone. There is no real action to take here, aside from waiting things out.

If you’re serious about getting rid of the exterior condensation affecting your view of the morning sunrise, consider a product such as RainX.

Interior Condensation

Foggy windows that are the result of condensation from the moisture inside your home can be resolved by taking a few simple steps. Start by ensuring your windows are clean, and that what you suspect is condensation is actually condensation – and not dirt, kitchen grease buildup, or other grime creating the illusion of foggy windows.

If cleaning doesn’t help and you still get foggy windows as the day progresses, try the following remedies:

  • Run your kitchen and bathroom fans to expel moisture from your house.
  • Circulate the air with a general ceiling fan or oscillating fan.
  • Reduce your use of diffusers and humidifiers.
  • Open your windows to let out moisture.
  • Turn your heat up.
  • Check the condition of the weather stripping around your windows.
  • Use moisture eliminators (desiccants) in strategic areas.
  • Unblock your home’s fresh air intake if you have one.
  • Move houseplants away from windows.
  • Invest in a dehumidifier or air-to-air exchanger.

If windows are still foggy after all that effort, it might be that your foggy windows are due to condensation trapped inside your window’s sealed unit.

If this is the case, it’s best to treat the problem sooner rather than later. This is because foggy windows are more than just unattractive and inconvenient – they also can lead to water damage, mold and mildew growth, and floor stains.


Condensation Trapped Between Windowpanes

If you suspect your windows are foggy due to condensation in between your windowpanes, it’s highly likely that the window’s seal framing the edges of the glass is broken and has allowed moisture to seep in and get trapped.

A double-pane window contains insulating airspace sandwiched and sealed in between two glass panels. This airspace is extremely effective at maintaining a consistent temperature and reducing heat loss, especially when paired with a desiccant at the bottom of the window, and/or argon gas.

Most modern double-pane windows have an inner seal for protecting against moisture, and an outer seal for increasing the strength of the window. Once both seals weaken and crack open, condensation begins to seep into the airspace, creating the foggy, wet appearance you can’t just wipe away. At this point, a repair or replacement of your window’s sealed unit is required to fix the problem.

The seals of double-pane windows are not impervious to the elements, and eventually weaken due to age (think decades of exposure to sunlight, wind, and rainfall – over time, the window’s sealant hardens and starts to crack.) Seals can also break when there is water retention in the frame (improper drainage around the window).

Double-pane window seals last about 15-20 years. After this time, if a broken window seal is the only issue affecting the quality of your windows, only the window’s sealed unit requires replacing. This means you can leave the window frame in-tact and only replace the glass – it’s a faster, more convenient, and more affordable solution than replacing the entire unit.

Remember that repairing or replacing aging windows comes with many benefits in addition to eliminating your foggy panes! For instance, they can go a long way in increasing your home’s energy efficiency, thereby reducing your heating and cooling costs. Completely new windows can also improve the curb appeal of your home, as well as make it more secure.

Need help fixing your foggy windows? Call Budget Glass in Nanaimo at (250) 758-3374 for a free quote on sealed unit replacements, or schedule an appointment online.

 

15 Oct 2019
extend patio season with a sunroom

Extending Your Patio Season Using Glass

Enjoy your Patio Year-Round with these Upgrades

The fact that days are getting shorter, nights are getting cooler, and kids are back to school doesn’t have to spell the end of your outdoor patio season!

In our previous post on Creative Ways to Incorporate Glass into Your Outdoor Spaces, we included a variety of ways to not only make your patio more beautiful – we also included ways to extend your patio season using glass.

In this post we share even more ways you can use glass outdoors to enjoy your outdoor spaces well after the sunshine of summer starts to fade. Here are our top 6 ways that custom glass features can help you enjoy your patio year-round.

1. Sunrooms

Sunrooms are without a doubt the grandest way to extend your patio season. Adding a sunroom to your home essentially means adding an entirely enclosed space made of glass to the exterior of your property. Sunrooms provide additional square footage to your home, add more natural light, and allow you to enjoy the scenery of the outdoors year-round. As a Four Seasons Sunroom Distributor, our staff can answer all of your questions about adding a sunroom to your home.

See Sunrooms: What You Need to Know to learn more.

2. Enclosed Patios

If a sunroom isn’t feasible due to your budget or you just don’t have the space, consider an enclosed patio instead, where you simply add a glass roof (patio cover) and glass walls, and voila!  You can also create enclosed outdoor spaces that are independent from your property using this method, resulting in a glass gazebo. Glass walls surrounding your outdoor seating area will protect everyone from both wind and noise, while frosted glass has the bonus of adding privacy.

3. Patio Covers

Glass patio covers are probably the No. 1 thing homeowners can do to extend their patio season here on the “Wet Coast”.  Affixed to the side of your home, a glass patio cover acts as a large awning to shield the area underneath against rain and snow. They are perfect for BBQ areas or outdoor kitchens. Patio covers are as beautiful as they are functional, and with so many custom glass patio cover options available, you are sure to find something that complements your current space and house exterior.

4. Glass Pergolas

A glass pergola acts much like a patio cover does – in fact, the terms are often used interchangeably. However, a glass pergola is a freestanding structure (not attached to your home). Glass pergolas are not as structurally sound as a patio cover, but they are helpful for outdoor areas that are more than a few steps away from the back door, and useful when you’re unable to affix something to your home’s exterior. They are also portable in some cases. For example, in the event you move, you can dismantle and take your pergola with you.

5. Sliding Glass Walls

If your home’s architecture supports it, go for a sliding glass wall that connects your interior to your exterior living space. With this option, the wall that leads to your patio is replaced with not just a sliding glass door, but an entire wall! When combined with a patio cover and a few outdoor patio heaters, you can successfully blend the beauty of your backyard with your home’s interior. Perfect for dinner parties and just life in general!

6. Glass Firepit Surround

Firepits are becoming increasingly popular in fall and winter when open fire bans are lifted, especially on cool nights. Don’t allow wind to disturb your fire! A wind guard for your firepit made of glass can help you enjoy the warmth and beauty of the fire while protecting the fire from gusts of wind.

A glass fireplace surround added to your traditional firepit won’t keep the rain out, but it will help reduce the wind from putting out your flames. At Budget Glass, we can provide you with a custom-made glass fireplace surround using the measurements you provide us. Our experts can also help you pick out what type of thickness and edges will be suitable for your glass project.

More Ways to Extend Your Patio Season

In addition to the above mentioned glass features, you can also extend your patio season by doing things that will encourage your family to want to be outdoors in the first place, such as:

  • Plant fall veggies
  • Enjoy your favourite hot beverages outdoors
  • Buy patio heaters
  • Create a cozy space with furniture, pillows and blankets
  • Keep the area clean and inviting
  • Add a covered outdoor kitchen
  • Install a hot tub
  • Keep up nice lighting year-round

Just because the weather gets rainy and windy here on Vancouver Island in the fall, you don’t have to pack up the patio furniture just yet! Consider adding glass to your patio to protect your outdoor living space from the elements. Doing so might just make your patio your favourite place to be year-round.

The above suggestions are just a few of the ways you can extend the potential of your patio into the fall and winter seasons using glass. Contact the glass and window specialists at Budget Glass Nanaimo to receive free quotes of any or all of the above project ideas. Call us (250) 758-3374 or schedule an appointment online.

30 Aug 2019
creative outdoor glass uses

Class up your Backyard with Glass

8 Creative Ways to Incorporate Glass into Your Outdoor Spaces

At Budget Glass in Nanaimo, it’s no secret that We Love Glass – and one of the reasons we love glass so much is because of how it’s such an elegant, functional, and versatile building material. When it comes to residential glass, we believe the material is good for so much more than just the four walls of your home.

When it’s added to your outdoor living space, glass can help your patio stand out, help show off an attractive table, or accent and protect your pool area, for example. There are a number of ways custom glass features can enhance the look and feel of your outdoor space. Here are the top 8 ways custom glass features can take your patio to the next level of class and comfort.

1. Glass Walls

An outdoor seating area is made instantly cozier and more private with the addition of a sandblasted or frosted glass privacy wall or two. By adding glass walls and privacy screens around your patio area, you’re essentially protecting the area from nosy neighbours and shielding the area from wind, noise, and in some cases – mosquitoes. Try adding solar-powered coloured LEDs at the base of the glass walls, which can add a little something extra to the evening’s ambience.

2. Glass Door

Replace your standard sliding glass door with a custom-made pivoting glass door. A pivoting glass door in place of a standard slider door or French doors can instantly add an impressive and modern touch to your outdoor design. A pivot door is a swinging door that opens via a spindle in the centre of the door frame, as opposed to being affixed via hinges to one side of a frame.

Pivot glass doors are usually larger and heavier than regular doors. Glass pivoting doors can be frosted for privacy, or clear for optimal views. The spindle is usually hidden so as not to obstruct the view. With hands-free operation, some pivoting doors are also functional when your hands are full of drinks and appetizers for your guests.

3. Glass Patio Cover

Glass patio covers protect you and your guests from harmful UV rays in the summer months and shield you from the rain in the fall months. This allows you to extend your enjoyment of your outdoor patio.

As beautiful as they are functional, patio covers made of glass are an easy way to incorporate glass into your backyard décor. The best part is that with so many custom glass patio cover options available, there is plenty of opportunity to get creative with your patio cover design. Budget Glass in Nanaimo can help you choose from:

  • Aluminum or wood framed patio covers
  • All glass, partial glass or all aluminum roof
  • Clear, bronzed or opaque glass

4. Glass Pool Surround

Adding a glass railing surround to your backyard pool in place of a chain link or picketed fence provides a stunning design element to your outdoor living space. Glass railings are an elegant way to provide a beautiful safety feature to any space. They are also strong, durable, easy to clean, and shatterproof.

With a glass pool surround, your backyard instantly becomes more serene when there isn’t a big and bulky barrier obstructing the path to the pool. This not only makes the area more attractive but keeps the occupants of the pool that much safer.

Glass railings are another area where you have customization options in terms of framing material and colour, and whether you’d like to have top-rail framed glass panels or topless glass railing options.

5. Glass Tabletop

Instead of buying a patio table from a Big Box Store, why not make a glass tabletop using a piece of custom-cut glass? Ordering a custom-cut glass table (i.e. plate glass) is more cost-effective than you’d think, and glass tabletops are always in style.

To make your own glass tabletop, start by choosing what you’d like to use as your table base – from oak barrels, to engine blocks, to framed boxes, to old stone statues – and then order a custom-cut glass top from us here at Budget Glass Nanaimo. Simply provide us with the measurements you need, and we will cut your glass to order.

If you’re not sure what type of glass or what thickness you need, our experts can show you the shapes and edge work options suitable for your glass project.

It’s possible to add a glass tabletop to an existing table as well, which can make a standard patio table more stable, more attractive, and easier to clean up.

6. Glass Artwork

creative uses for outdoor glass

Glass installations don’t need to be some sort of super-structural additions to your outdoor spaces – they can be added completely for art’s sake! A custom etched-glass artwork can quickly become the focal point of your entire backyard.

We believe stand-alone pieces are a fun way to incorporate glass into your outdoor décor and might just become a conversation starter. Just take a look at one of our staff’s custom glass accents in his own yard:

7. Glass Water Wall

A glass water wall or waterfall looks similar to a water fountain, but the water is piped upwards and falls from above while being splayed across a large sheet of glass (smooth or textured) before it falls back down to the collector dish below. The constant trickling water down the decorative glass of a water wall creates a glimmering, soothing effect, especially when combined with lights and your favourite plants.

8. Glass Lanterns

Don’t overlook your backyard’s lighting design! Combine any of the above creative uses for glass in your backyard with a lighting solution also made of glass to round out your look. By operating more than just your standard exterior light, you can add a touch of coziness and variety to the space.

Solar-powered outdoor lanterns add the perfect finishing touch to your outdoor living space and can truly tie all of the glass art and accents together for one unified backyard oasis. Hang glass lanterns from trees, add a couple to your steps, and place one to serve as a centrepiece for your glass table-top.

Your backyard will be looking like a magazine spread in no time!

The above suggestions are just some of the ways you can get creative with your outdoor spaces using the elegance of glass – our favourite building material! If you have an idea on how to use glass design in your backyard design, the custom-cut glass and window specialists at Budget Glass Nanaimo can help. We believe glass is a clean and elegant addition to any outdoor living space. Call us (250) 758-3374 or schedule an appointment online.

01 Jul 2019
birds flying into windows

Birds Hitting Your Windows?

11 Ways to Prevent Birds From Flying Into Windows

The sound of a bird, no matter how big, flying into your closed window can be quite startling. It can also lead to broken windows and inevitably, a few fallen birds. While keeping blinds and curtains closed at all times is effective at keeping birds at bay – most homeowners want to be able to look out the window from time to time! Fortunately, there are many ways to prevent birds from hitting your windows that still allow you to see out the window.

Let’s take a closer look at how to keep birds from hitting windows.

Why Do Birds Fly Into Closed Windows?

To start, it helps to understand why certain birds like robins and cardinals seem to aim straight for your closed windows. These birds are simply seeing a continuation of their habitat (more trees and open sky) reflected in your window.  Some species might also be mistaking their own reflections for other birds and go in for the attack.

To prevent broken windows in your future, and to perhaps spare a few birds’ lives in the process, Budget Glass Nanaimo has a few tips for bird proofing your windows – the bulk of these methods involve obscuring their reflection.

1. Paper Cut-outs of Birds

One cost-effective way of bird proofing your windows is to hang up paper cut-outs of other birds in the window. You can make these out of ordinary computer or construction paper. Not so into the DIY? Pet stores sell decals that are colored in an ultraviolet spectrum. These decals are transparent to human eyes but visible to birds.

2. Stained Glass or Other Adhesive Decalsstop birds flying into windows - bird decal

If birds aren’t your thing, consider dressing up the window a little bit with other types of obstructions, like stained glass art pieces, or other window decorations, like the reusable plastic decals found at most home décor shops, dollar stores, or craft stores. Even something as simple as multiple Post-It Notes will do the trick.

3. Films

Window films are fairly inexpensive and are applied like wallpaper to the exterior of the window to reduce reflection. Window films help protect your windows and the birds while making your windows more energy efficient at the same time.

One type of DIY window film we’ve heard people trying is dish soap, which, when thinly spread, creates an opaque film on the window. However, this type of film would need plenty of reapplications. Another approach is using window paint as a type of window film, which could be a fun project for the kids.

5. Window Treatments

A more permanent measure is installing manufactured glass such as UV-patterned glass or acid-etched glass – two types of commercially produced glass treatments. UV patterned glass is a glazing treatment that birds can see but humans cannot, which keeps your windows transparent and also helps with energy efficiency. Acid-etched glass obscures the transparency of the windows for both humans and birds. With this method, a chemical is used to etch a pattern or full opaque treatment onto the window. Acid-etched glass acts like film but is more durable and won’t scratch off.

 6. Adhesive Stripes

Rather than decals, vertical stripes might be more of the aesthetic you’re looking for. We recommend using 1/8″ window-safe white tape on the outside of the window spaced about four inches apart. You can also use black electrical tape in a pinch. There is also a specialty tape available at pet stores designed for this purpose, or you can use paint pens and stencils.

9. Bird Feeders & Baths

In addition to adjusting your windows, pay attention to what you have around your windows, such as bird feeders and baths. One approach is to keep feeders and baths far from your windows (more than 25 feet) so birds end up avoiding your windows altogether.

Alternatively, hang feeders very close to your windows. The feeders will draw birds in slowly, lessening the chance of them hitting your window at full speed.  This principle also works with wind chimes.

7. Netting, Screens, and Shutters

Beyond obstructing window reflections, you can also install physical barriers like thin dark netting, bird-safe screens, or shutters. All of these physical barriers can be customized to your window size and type, making them aesthetically pleasing. Sunshades and awnings also help reduce window reflections by shading the area.

8. Lighting

Exterior lighting can have an effect on birds and other wildlife and should be adjusted accordingly, starting with ensuring exterior lights are shielded downwards. Next, go for motion sensor lights to keep overall lighting to a minimum, and choose the wattage of your exterior light bulbs wisely to avoid over lighting. Warm-light LEDs are optimal.

Also try to keep interior lights off as much as possible so birds aren’t drawn to your home at dusk when the natural light starts to fade.

9. Plant Lifeplant in window to prevent birds hitting window

We have seen a few homeowners attach branches or small pieces of driftwood to the exteriors of their windows using suction cups and fishing line. This artistic approach gives birds something to perch on and draws birds in slowly enough so that they get what they are looking for without divebombing the window.

You can also plant trees and hedges or planter boxes near your windows to obstruct the view and also add privacy to your space.

If you have houseplants, consider moving them away from the window.

10. New Windows

When it comes time for installing new windows, talk to your window installers about your concerns about birds. Slightly tilted windows may be an option. When windows are installed at a slight vertical tilt facing downward, the window surface reflects the ground, rather than the sky and the trees. The tilt is subtle enough that homeowners don’t notice it.

11. Consult the Pros

If you need help solving the problem of birds hitting your window, the glass specialists at Budget Glass Nanaimo can help. To learn more about our specialized glass, window films, and windows for homes and businesses, give us a call at (250) 758-3374 or schedule an appointment online.

20 Jun 2019

How to Paint Around Windows

Tips & Tricks for Painting Around Windows

When it comes time to paint the house, painting around your old wood-framed windows is oftentimes the most tedious part of the entire project. Painting wooden windowpanes and frames can be time-consuming and is often a messy, frustrating experience if you aren’t slow and steady, or you haven’t taken the time to properly prep the area.

If painstakingly taping your windows with painter’s tape doesn’t appeal to you, there are a few different ways you can protect your windows while you paint the frames. The methods below are faster than using painter’s tape, work just as well, and best of all, they don’t leave behind any sticky adhesive!

Here are 4 clever hacks for painting around windows:painting around windows

1. Masking Liquid

Masking Liquid H2O, a painter’s best friend, is an acrylic-modified, water-based clear coating that peels off of glass once it’s dry. Masking Liquid is easy to use both indoors and outdoors. To use this product, simply brush the liquid onto the edges of the glass, give it some time to dry to a gel-like finish, and then start painting. Afterwards, the masking liquid can be peeled away easy enough. We recommend using the sharp edge of a razor blade to slice the gel away from the edge of the frame, and then the flat edge to scrape the gel off.

2. Lip Balm or Vaseline

If you don’t have any masking liquid lying around the garage, it’s no problem! Regular lip balm or Vaseline can be used instead. Using a cotton swab or your fingers, apply a generous coat of lip balm or a thin coat of Vaseline on the areas you wish to protect from paint.

Once the paint is dry, simply wash off the protective coating with a dry cloth and some window cleaner.  This method works exactly the same way as masking liquid at a fraction of the cost.

3. Wet Strips of Paper

Wet paper strips, cut carefully using a paper cutter or straight edge to make sure the lines are straight, are a genius way to protect glass when you’re painting around your windows. The wet paper sticks to the window just like tape but is easier to get into position and a lot easier to remove around into the perfect position.

Here’s how to do it: Take carefully cut strips of paper – regular copy paper is just fine – and dip them into a tray of water. Make sure the strips are saturated but not falling apart, remove the excess water, and then apply the strips on the glass you wish to protect. The wet paper sticks to the glass easily and can even be moved around until each strip is positioned just right.

Once applied, dry up any excess or dripping water from the windows and then simply paint around the window. Remove the paper strips once the paint around them is dry—these paper protectors will likely dry at the same rate as the paint colour.

Additional Tips for Painting Windows

  • Before using any of the methods above, thoroughly clean the windows and their frames of dust, debris, and spiderwebs.
  • Fully remove screens – paint drips on screens are difficult to clean.
  • Have cotton swabs and a damp rag on hand to clean any messes up as you go.
  • Use a paintbrush intended for cutting in and painting in closed quarters. A 1.5 inch stiff angled brush will help out a lot, as stiff bristles are more precise and don’t splay out.
  • Work from the center outwards if possible and aim to paint rails (horizontals) before stiles (verticals).
  • Remove any paint drips from glass windows once they are fully dry using a razor blade or specialized tool like the MaxCraft Stubby Scraper made exclusively for removing adhesives and dried paint.

Big or small, a painting project is often a chance to get a little up close and personal with your home’s walls and window frames. Sometimes setting out to give the place a fresh coat of paint leads to other renovation projects. If, as you’re prepping your windows for a paint job, you realize that you might be better off replacing your old windows with new vinyl windows, the team of glass specialists here at Budget Glass Nanaimo can help! Give us a call at (250) 758-3374 or schedule an appointment online.