Some norms to ensure the functional role of windows
In churches and other ancient buildings, stained glass is the window glazing surface. It is made of H-shaped profile lead came holding pieces of colored glass. These leads cames are welded at their junctions. A cement is applied to fill the thin the space between glass and lead for sealing of the assembly. A second window is often found in front of the stained glass window in these buildings because in our northern climate, a single-glazed window is insufficient. One can also observe old buildings where the stained glass window is on the inside of a wooden tiles window.
Today, it is much more advantageous to install the stained glass inside of a window as a decorative element. It is protected from the weather and vandalism and is easy to access for cleaning. And there is no compromise to the use of energy-efficient windows.
One must, however, take care that adding a stained glass window does not diminish the scope of the standards that apply to residential windows, especially at safety but also in terms of ventilation and lighting. For example, one should not screw a stained glass panel in a single window of a room so that a tool is required to remove it. Or one should not hang a stained glass panel too heavy to be removed by a child in an emergency.
Requirements of norms
The latest standards of the National Building Code of Canada (NBCC) apply to new buildings or renovations. Some provinces, such as Quebec, have their own code. Your architect, your contractor or windows and doors supplier knows these standards and ensures compliance. A list below shows some excerpts standards of windows requiring attention when installing a stained glass. There are several other standards that apply to windows including energy efficiency standards (Energy Star), air sealing, rain or wind resistance (CSA A440) but the installation of a stained glass does not affect these standards.
- in terms of ventilation, "unless mechanical ventilation is provided (...), the NBCC requires each bedroom, dining room, living room, kitchen, den, combined room and any other finished room other than a bathroom, to have an unobstructed opening of at least 0.28 m2 (3 sq. ft.) for ventilation during the non-heating season." (1) The bathroom must include mechanical ventilation.
- in terms of lighting, "to provide adequate natural light, it is recommended that the unobstructed area of glass in a window be at least five per cent of the floor area of each room or combination of rooms." (2)
- in terms of emergency evacuation, "except where the suite is sprinklered, each bedroom or combination bedroom shall have at least one outside window or exterior door openable from the inside without the use of keys, tools or special knowledge and without the removal of sashes or hardware." and the window referred "shall provide an unobstructed opening of not less than 0.35 m2 (543 sq. in.) in area with no dimension less than 0,38 m (15 po)." (3)
Your artisan has the know-how
To incorporate the stained glass in homes in full compliance, your stained glass panel may need to be provided with an opening mechanism in one or more windows per room depending on the window size and the amount of them. Mounting stained glass in shutters is a very pleasant way to do: you open them to let the light in or you leave them close to color your room. In the evening, you can display your beautiful stained glass to persons outside while enjoying good times with your privacy. It is also possible to mount your stained glass panels on rail or clipped like a window screen. Finally, it is possible to cover only a portion of your window with stained glass.
Your artisan at Atelier Rodrigue knows the standards and possibilities of making your stained glass windows to get a result both pleasant to use, elegant and safe.
(1) (2) Canada Mortgage and Housing Corportion, About your house - General Series
(3) National Building Code of Canada, Article 188.8.131.52