The Difference Between Glass And Acrylic
Acrylic and glass, both of these materials are used worldwide. If you are already using acrylic sheets or glass, you might want to know the differences as well.
Moreover, if you are to start a new project, knowing the key takeaways will help you choose the better one. So today, we are going to cover the topic- acrylic vs. glass.
Before we dive in, we need to have a clear basic about acrylic and glass. So let’s start!
What Is Acrylic Sheet?
Acrylic sheet is a transparent and solid thermoplastic homopolymer that is made from polymer and carbon. In other words, it is a special kind of plastic (polymethyl methacrylate- PMMA).
In the manufacturing industry, it is also known as plexiglass or acrylic sheets. People mostly use it as sheet forms. Some of its widely used applications include window panels, sky panels, displays, etc.
Plexiglass sheet is different from polycarbonate sheet. Polycarbonate sheet offers excellent strength, but the acrylic sheet has better surface hardness and better price.
What Is Glass?
Glass is a sturdy substance that is made out of silica and sand. First, a viscous mixture of dry materials is heated to a high temperature. Then, to make it non-crystalline material, the mixture is cooled quickly.
Compared to acrylic, glass is more scratch-resistant and cheaper to purchase. Furthermore, we can recycle it easily. Glass is well known to most of us, which is why it still has a wide range of users worldwide.
Acrylic VS Glass
So you might have a clear concept about the basics of acrylic and glass. Now it is time to go for specific takeaways.
Here we will break down their particular features so that you can gain knowledge of how they differ from each other.
When it comes to optical clarity, acrylic transmits more light than glass. To be very specific, acrylic can transmit up to 92% of visible light. On the other hand, glass transmits between 80 and 90 percent. It depends on glass types.
Glass may start to appear cloudy or milky in case of a certain thickness. So it offers less transparency then. But acrylic doesn’t develop such type of quality due to thickness.
For impact resistance and durability, acrylic has the win. Because it 20% more impact resistant than glass. Sometimes, it is like harder than concrete.
Manufacturers often use acrylic sheets to replace the glass. Replacement is needed for security and protection purposes.
In a nutshell, acrylic sheets can tolerate much more strain than glass. On the other hand, glass can crack or break easily.
Depending on how the material is manufactured, acrylic can be way more scratch-resistant than glass. However, in general, glass is pretty much prone to resistance as well. But when you need a better performance on this, consult with your manufacturer or supplier.
Acrylic is almost half the weight of the glass that simplifies it for DIY projects. So, especially where weight is a crucial factor in designing, acrylic is an effective alternative to glass.
You can bend the glass into curved shapes, but the finishing is tough to achieve due to its limited durability. As a result, complicated shapes can be challenging to achieve by using glass.
On the other hand, you can mold acrylic sheets easily and make compound forms according to the requirement. Moreover, the optical properties remain excellent all the process
Compared to glass, acrylic has more excellent weather tolerance, which allows it to be left outside without degrading significantly. Apart front that, due to their durability, acrylic sheets won’t shatter or crack. But one strong wind can break the glass into pieces.
If you compare acrylic with glass in insulation, acrylic is the winner because it is 20% more efficient than glass at minimizing temperature flux.
As a result, outside air penetrates less quickly than it does through regular glass. It also helps in temperature regulation and lowers energy costs.
Glass materials are less expensive than acrylic. But a tempered glass or laminated glass is costlier than acrylic. Moreover, forming tools are expensive for glass.
But acrylic is much more cost-effective in that case. Moreover, because of the longer lifespan, durability and performance, acrylic can be the perfect choice for you.
Due to the properties, it is very tough to maintain glass materials. However, because it collects dirt so fast and not easy to wash or clean, on the other hand, acrylic sheets are easy to maintain, clean, and repair.
In most cases, you don’t get much protection from UV rays with standard glass. However, manufacturers like us put a unique UV resistant layer on the acrylic sheets to blog up to 95% harmful UV radiation and keep you safe.
When To Choose Acrylic?
So you have learned that acrylic is lightweight. So for applications where it needs to save weight, like aquariums, roof lights, caravan, and boat windows, you can choose acrylic sheets. Besides that, you can use acrylic sheets for DIY projects like accessories, side tables, and nameplates.
In a nutshell, if you want to work with a tight budget, zero risks of breakage, ready to tolerate visual abnormalities, and want to remodel or design often, acrylic sheets are the ideal choice for you.
Can Acrylic Be Used as an Alternative to Glass?
Of course, acrylic plastic beats glass material in almost every aspect. This is why the application and acceptance of acrylic plastic are increasing rapidly worldwide, especially in Europe.
People are leaning more toward these sheets than dealing with glass material because it’s a safer choice for both home and office, easy to maintain, longer lifespan.
Now it’s your turn, which one do you think will be more suitable for your next project? UVACRYLIC is a top manufacturer of acrylic sheets, let us know in the chat option and we will be standing by to help you with any information or service you need.