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Will a window replacement company repair or replace broken glass?

Window replacement vs. glass replacement

While some people might use the term “window replacement” interchangeably with “glass replacement,” they aren’t the same thing… and each is handled by a completely different type of company with its own specialty training and equipment.

Window replacement entails removing the old window (frame, glass and all), and installing a new unit in the window opening, which is done by a window installation company like DunRite. We focus on replacing all of the windows in a home (not just one). We also replace exterior doors, such as patio doors, sliding glass doors or moving wall systems, and front entryway doors.

We take out the old, and put in the new.

Glass replacement, on the other hand, is done by a glass repair company. Leaving the window frame intact, they remove the broken glass, then replace it with new glass. Even when the window is double- or triple-pane, mullioned, insulated with argon gas or has opaque privacy glass, a glass repair company is still the best fit for the job.

Many homeowners are unaware of these differences, but if you call a window replacement company about broken glass, they will simply refer you to a glass repair company.

Who is our trusted partner for referrals? Best Glass
We’ve been referring people to them for years,
and they’re 
a great option for you to consider.

Back in the day when windows were a simple pane of glass, repair was less complicated. Everyone knew you could either replace the glass yourself, if you had the skills, or call a glass company to do the job for you. Modern windows are more complicated, with coatings and films added to the glass to make them more energy efficient, and two or three panes of glass, but repairing broken glass is still a job for a glass repair company.

Can glass be repaired? No, it has to be replaced.

As windows have become more sophisticated, they’ve evolved their services to keep up with demand, and there’s no type of glass repair they can’t do.

“We’re able to match or duplicate the color of the glass and any coatings it may have, along with the thickness of glass, the number of panes and any other features the damaged window may have, so that our repair is indistinguishable from the original. Even the color of the spacers between the panes can be color matched,” says Best Glass President Bob Hittenberger. “We pull out all of the stops to make our customers happy.”

Glass repair imageThey maintain a library of glass at their offices, which include samples of glass from a wide variety of window manufacturers that sell product to Arizona homeowners. These are compared to glass from the broken window to find the best possible match.

“We’re able to compare the glass and sample in different lighting scenarios, both indoors and out, and even compare how they reflect, which are all factors that impact how well the replacement glass matches the original,” adds Hittenberger.

Do they occasionally get stumped by a job? Sure, if it’s a window that’s decades old and no longer manufactured – that can make it hard to match, especially if the materials are no longer available. In that case, they’ll match the color and sheen of the glass to their best ability. If it’s a two-part window, such as a sliding window with two separate pieces of glass, the homeowner may opt to replace both pieces to get a closer match that’s less noticeable, but for most repairs, it’s a seamless repair.

We like their reputation and the quality of the work they’ve done for our customers.

“Like DunRite, Best Glass has a policy of no pressure sales. They just educate the customer on their options so they can make an informed decision,” adds Sal Sucato, president of DunRite Windows & Doors. “We recommend them highly. They’re the only glass repair company we refer our clients to.”

Does it sometimes make sense to replace windows instead of repairing broken glass? Typically that’s only something to consider if the windows are single pane or more than 20 years old, and you’ve already been considering whole home window replacements before the broken window occurred. If someone has been sitting on the fence because they weren’t quite sure it was the right time to replace them, a broken window can push that decision along. After all, who wants to spend money fixing broken glass knowing they’re going to replace that window soon, right?

Broken glass? Call us first if we installed the window, just in case a warranty applies, or if you want a quote for window replacements on three or more items. If you’re not a DunRite customer, consider giving Best Glass a call if you want to repair rather than replace. They’ll treat you right.

Published Oct. 15, 2021

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Please note that we install replacement windows and doors, but we don’t repair them or replace broken glass. Three-item minimum purchase, some doors excluded. Refer to our FAQ and warranties page for details.


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