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Solid & Fire Rated Glass Blocks

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Fire-rated 60-minute and 90-minute and solid glass blocks can provide bullet, vandal, fire, and graffiti-resistant solutions that save money for owners of commercial, residential, retail, and architectural buildings while providing a contemporary look.

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Fire-rated security glass blocks

vistabrik solid glass blocks at a correctional building columbus ohio
vistabrick glass block close up
vistabrik glass block clarity

Fire-rated and solid glass blocks can provide the following benefits in commercial or industrial buildings or homes:

Increased fire resistance. If you own a home in a limited lot residential community, you may find that building codes often require windows with fire ratings of 60 or 90 minutes. Additionally, fire-rated windows are often required in non-residential construction (for example, in stairwells in schools, hospitals, parking garages, etc.).

Noise reduction and soundproofing. City dwellers or homeowners on busy streets will find that glass block windows significantly reduce noise levels from traffic, etc., and provide a quieter space. Available in thicknesses of 3/8”, 3/4”, and, for the solid glass block, 3”. Solid Vistabrik  has a sound transmission class (STC) rating of 53, while the 60- and 90-minute units have an STC rating of 48. (The average STC rating for a double-pane window is 28, in comparison.)

Improved security. The thicker-faced products (which are 50% to 300% thicker than standard blocks) will provide a high level of security and make vandalism and break-ins very difficult. Additionally, these units improve security while still providing natural light in workspaces, which has been shown to improve productivity.

Bullet- and graffiti-resistant. The 3” thick solid glass bricks resist penetrations from high-impact weapons. The non-stick glass surface makes it easier to remove graffiti.

Increased privacy without sacrificing design. These masonry units are available in three patterns to complement your home décor and two obscure glass designs to make your interior space more private.

Decreased maintenance costs. Replacing broken commercial or residential glass window sashes can be time-consuming and expensive – thick, solid block windows will greatly reduce repair costs.

Products & Uses

3" Thick Vistabrik Solid Security Glass Blocks

These heavyweight (an 8" x 8" x 3" unit weighs approximately 15 lbs.) solid glass blocks can be used in a window or wall designed for either an obscure or a clear view. They offer high-impact strength, low maintenance, good sound insulation, and flexibility to make curved walls and can be easily replaced and cleaned. These units are UL classified for use in 45-, 60-, and 90-minute fire-rated window assemblies.

stippled vistabrik glass block clear vistabrick

Sizes & Pattern Options:

  • Clear 8" x 8" x 3"
  • Clear 3" x 8" x 3"
  • Clear 8" x 8" x 3" corner unit
  • Clear 4" x 8" x 3"
  • Obscure (stippled) 8" x 8" x 3"

60- and 90-Minute Thicker-Faced Safety  Blocks from Pittsburgh Corning & Mulia

The Pittsburgh Corning "Thickset 60" and "Thickset 90" and the Mulia Thickface fire-rated selections provide all the benefits of traditional blocks, but they also offer improved UL fire ratings, higher levels of security, lower maintenance costs, sound deadening, and an improved look for an industrial, commercial, or architectural building.

Sizes & Pattern Options:

60-minute (face thickness of 3/8")
  • Vue pattern, Pittsburgh Corning, 8" x 8" x 4"
  • Decora pattern, Pittsburgh Corning, 8" x 8" x 4"
  • Wave pattern, Mulia, 8" x 8" x 4"
90 minute fire rated glass block in a clear vue pattern thickset 90 minute fire rated glass block in a decora wavy pattern
Thickset 90-minute (face thickness of 3/4")
  • Vue pattern, 6" x 6" x 4"
  • Decora pattern, 6" x 6" x 4"
  • Vue pattern, 8" x 8" x 4"
  • Decora pattern, 8" x 8" x 4"
  • Endura pattern, 8" x 8" x 4"
sixy minute clear glass block obscure 60 minute glass block endura 60 minute glass block

Where to Use

Gyms and recreation facilities. One such installation is Lloyd Hall, a recreation center in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

solid glass blocks in a gym in philadelphia pennsylvania
outside view of gymnasium windows using glass blocks
gym windows

Schools, hospitals, and libraries.

Elevated walkways and parking garages. Two such installations include Pittsburgh Perry High School in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, and the parking garage at Logan Airport in Boston, Massachusetts.

curved glass block wall in a parking deck
large glass block expanse
transit station glass blocks

Stairwells, shelters, and walls in transit stations, jails, detention centers, courthouses, police stations, and embassies. Solid glass units provide security without giving up light or looks. A few interesting projects featuring glass blocks include Yankee Stadium complex for the New York City Transit Authority and the Clay County Detention Center in Liberty, Missouri.

privacy glass block walls daylighting technique
doctors office walls with glass blocks
transit wall system with glass block

Windows in factories and manufacturing plants and buildings. These blocks provide better protection against vandals and much better insulation than the single pane windows they tend to replace.

Limited lot residential communities where homes, apartments, or condominiums are close together. Get light into bathroom, showers, kitchens, or virtually any space where privacy is an issue.


Installation of 60-minute glass blocks

60-minute units can be used in both masonry and non-masonry (wood- or steel-framed) windows and walls. The assemblies must be anchored with specially designed panel anchors and/or inside a U-shaped aluminum channel. Use a fire-retardant sealant at the top (head) and sides (jambs) of the opening.

Installation of 90-minute glass block windows

90-minute blocks are UL-rated for window openings only. They must be framed and anchored with 1/4” thick steel (not aluminum) channeling. A fire-rated sealant should be used at the head and jambs; 3/4” expansion material is required as well.

If you need design, supply, or installation assistance with a fire-rated safety or security solid glass block window or wall, call or fill out our free consultation form.


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