site issues that can crop up in glass balustrades installation

5 Site Issues That Can Crop Up While Installing Glass Balustrades

When we handle any frameless glass balustrade installation for clients, we focus on aspects such as using the best materials and workmanship, and ensure that the work is completed in an efficient, timely and unobtrusive manner. However, there are times when everything doesn’t run as planned.

In some cases, certain site issues become hurdles to timely completion of the project. Here’s a list of 5 site issues that may crop up while installing balustrades; and how we tackle them:

#1 Inadequate support to fix the glass balustrades

From a safety perspective, a balustrade is only as strong as the material used in its making and the substrate its being affixed to. While we manufacture balustrades to stringent quality standards, adequate support is necessary to ensure their structural integrity is maintained. The common issues our installers encounter on sites are:

Not enough of timber to affix the balustrade

This is very common with decking and balcony spaces. Here, the wooden beam at the edge isn’t wide enough to provide adequate support to the balustrade. In this case, we have to fix metal bracket extensions to the adjacent wall and then fix the balustrades on it.

Polystyrene walls

This material is commonly used to add to the energy-efficiency of a structure, but it is unable to provide the required support for a balustrade installation. In this case we use special screws that have tapered threads; these helps secure it to the foam and prevent them from coming loose. We always recommend to clients that some additional wood planks be installed behind the foam before getting the balustrade fixed.

#2 Laminate/ floating timber floors

Since these floors have an underlay, the balustrade doesn’t get the support it needs. If you have either laminated/ timber floors, we would have to cut out sections of the flooring material to fix the balustrade post supports directly to the floor underneath. In most instances, its best to fix balustrades before getting the timber flooring installed – this saves you a lot of hassle and expense. It’s important that we know what kind of flooring is going to be used, before we measure the site; this helps us find the best solutions for you.

#3 Water services/electric cabling

Any pipes that have been installed very close to the surface of the wall or slab can cause issues when we are installing balustrades. Ideally, all water pipes and electric cables should be positioned at a distance of a minimum of 200mm away from the point where the balustrades have to be installed.

#4 Gaps between the pillars

As per the Building Code Australia, gaps on any stair or balcony balustrade can’t be over 125mm part; this applies for the gaps between the pillars too. If the space exceeds this outlined distance, we then install a small section of balustrade to conform to the existing regulations. Since this is a labor-intensive job and takes longer to complete, it shakes up the installation schedule and cost. This can be avoided by ensuring in the planning stage, that that the gaps between pillars should be maintained at less than 125mm.

#5 Poorly laid tiles

When the tile adhesive hasn’t bonded properly to the flooring, it can make the tiles sound “hollow” and can cause lifting or cracking of tiles. If this is the case at the site, our installers wouldn’t be able to fix the balustrade as it will only crack the tiles and make the installation unstable. If we notice this kind of an issue, the only solution is to get the tiling refitted before the balustrade installation can be done.


We always make it a point to survey the site where the balustrade installation is to take place, well before our installers come in to complete the job. A bit of forward planning on your part can also help avoid many of these issues. For more information about balustrade installation procedures and our products, call Quantum Frameless Glass at this number – 1300 282 248. You can also contact us using this online form.

Thanks for reading,
Quantum Frameless Glass Team
1300 282 248

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