How To Select The Right Greenhouse Glazing Material

Greenhouse glazing is the process of installing the transparent material that covers the structure. Generally, the glazing materials are used as roofing and walls—responsible for transferring light from the outside into the plants. Today, the most common glazing materials used are glass, plastic films, polycarbonate, and fibreglass. Each has its strengths and weaknesses.

If you’re planning to build your greenhouse, you may want to know more about these glazing materials. In that case, you may need to identify the qualities of an excellent glazing material that’d satisfy your needs. For that purpose, here’s an article to help you, so read on!

Common Types Of Glazing Materials

Before you jump into what determines a top-notch glazing material, you may first check the options you have. Below are some of the typical greenhouse covering materials you may choose from:

  • Glass Greenhouses

A glass greenhouse is good for those who like a traditional look, and can either be cheaper horticultural glass, or toughened safety glass. Putting up this type of greenhouse, you may need a flat area in your yard for better stability.

Glass greenhouse from

  • Plastic Films

This could be the least expensive glazing material for greenhouses. In addition, it’s easy to install and maintain. Yet, its quality may be compromised after some time as it becomes brittle over time.

  • Polycarbonate

This is one of the newest materials and generally has high quality because of its thickness and diffusing properties. However, it yellows over time, affecting its light transmission.

  • Fibreglass

This type is durable and affordable since it doesn’t need a support structure to be stable. Yet, after prolonged exposure to sunlight, the material swells, affecting light transmission.

Qualities Of Glazing Material

Since you now know the different glazing materials, you could now dive into the qualities you may consider in selecting a material. The following are some of them:

  1. Light Transmission

Primarily, the glazing material must be able to transmit light and heat efficiently. As a rule of thumb, glazing materials must allow 70-75% light to allow a healthy dose of sunlight. On the other hand, while there’s a need for consistent sunlight, it should also be diffused to spread evenly.

You could build a wooden greenhouse to support the glazing materials that would disperse the sunlight. This is to address possible overexposure. Plants that are too exposed to light and heat may dry up and even wither them. The plants could receive just enough heat and light necessary for their growth with an efficient glazing material.

  1. Durability

This quality encompasses the overall strength of the glazing materials. As much as possible, they need to be resistant to strong winds, extreme temperatures, heavy snow loads, and inclement weather. In addition, the material shouldn’t become brittle even after massive and exposure to light.

greenhouse glazing material tips

  1. Adaptability

The materials may need to be easily installed and adjusted to cope with its support structure. In addition, it should also be easy to erect on different types of surfaces. Furthermore, it may need to complement other frame materials, such as wood, aluminium, and steel.

  1. Availability

While all the glazing materials are generally available, some have more stocks in your local hardware and gardening stores. This is a factor to consider as the availability speeds up or slows down the construction or repairs of greenhouses. In addition, less available materials could add costs as they may require shipping and hauling from their distributors or manufacturers.

  1. Insulation

This quality refers to how the material helps in counteracting extreme temperatures. In many cases, well-insulated glazing materials could block too much heat from entering and regulate the indoor climate. In cooler seasons, insulation traps the heat inside to keep the temperature and humidity levels needed by the plants to thrive in the greenhouse.

  1. Cost

After considering all the other qualities, you may now dwell on the pricing of the materials. This could be the part where you’ll need to pick the durable, light-transmitting yet costly material or the less durable yet inexpensive one. In other words, you may refer to this as the last point to consider before you pay for your glazing material.

Cucumbers and tomatoes grow in a modern polycarbonate greenhouse solar arc, sunlight through transparent walls, the concept of growing crops in a closed ground

Wrapping Up

Selecting the suitable greenhouse glazing material is one crucial process. Failure to do it may waste your time, money, and effort. That’s why you should be careful and have a detailed plan to carry out the steps to choose the first-rate covering material for your greenhouse.

If you’re putting up a greenhouse to grow plants anytime soon, you may get back to this article. Think about the qualities and how they’d fit the greenhouse in your mind. You may compare the standard glazing materials, weigh their strength and weakness to determine which best suits your needs.

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