As we mentioned in the provious sections, you need to ensure that your glass polisher has the right skills and experience to carry out your repairs professionally and to be able to provide you with invisible results.
Look for a qualification or recommendation on their website or literature.
An important point that we advise everyone to do, is to agree a Standard of Visual Quality within your agreement or contract with your glass polisher. This clearly sets out what you expect the finished results of your repairs to be.
For many years (almost 20) the only Standard of Visual Quality for installed flat glass has been that published by The Glass & Glazing Federation. This standard had its place in the industry and did serve a purpose. However, these standards are very forgiving on the side of the installer or glass worker and not so fair to the end user. What’s more, these standards were originally written to the standards of repair possible 20 years ago and do not reflect the abilities of today’s glass polishers.
For this reason, The Guild has published its own Standard of Visual Quality for the repair of installed flat glass demanding higher all round standards and quality of repair. Although these standards were written with glass polishing in mind, many glass industry customers have now adopted these enhanced standards for the general installation of flat glass.
We would strongly urge you to include a Standard of Visual Quality in your contract with any glass polisher you employ. Without an agreed standard you have nothing to fall back on if you recieve sub-standard repairs.
We would advise everyone to include such an agreement with any glass related matter from supply and installation to the cleaning of the glass, but the likelihood is that if you are reading this now, you already have a scratched glass problem and it is too late for that.
Contact Details. This may sound silly, but check that your glass polishers has a valid land line phone number, not just a mobile and that they have a proper email address rather than a Hotmail or gmail address. If something were to go wrong on your glass polishing contract, you need to be able to track them down. You would be surprised just how many people get caught out in this manner by rogue tradesmen.
Proforma Invoices – or payment in advance. This is a tricky one. Many trades, not just glass polishers, often ask for payment in advance. This is common practice, indeed we do it ourselves if we have no trading history with a client. However, this is a huge leap of faith for you, especially if you have never used a glass polisher before. Understandably, this makes customers very nervous.
The reason we and others ask for payment in advance is because the construction industry can be a very dark place and most of us can tell you stories of how much money we have lost in the past through companies not paying their invoices for no other reason than they don’t want to. These days, most people cannot afford to take a risk on not getting paid.
But this still doesn’t help you feel any less nervous, so if you are asked for payment in advance, offer 50% up front with the balance on completion or within 7 days of completion. This is usually seen as a fair arrangement with both sides taking an equal risk.
Terms and Conditions. Make sure you read any Terms and Conditions stipulated by your glass polisher. Terms and Conditions can include a whole host of ‘get out of jail free‘ clauses that could leave you without a leg to stand on if something goes wrong on your project. If you are not happy with or do not fully understand any point in a set of Terms and Conditions presented to you, ask for clarification. Do not sign them if do not agree with and do not allow yourself to be pressured in to signing them.
You are welcome to use our own Terms and Conditions as a guide.
Glass Breakage – There are a number of reasons that glass can break whilst being polished. If the glass has been fitting incorrectly or the spacer bars/packers have been fitted incorrectly or the glass has edge faults under the trim that cannot be seen, applying pressure to the surface of the glass can cause it to break. Breakage of this nature is not a fault of the polisher.
If too much heat is generated through polishing, especially near the edge, the glass can break. Breakage of this nature is usually a polisher error, but could also be attributed to incorrect fitting.
As a rule, this only applies to laminate and float glass. it is almost impossible to break toughened glass trough heat and pressure.
Should your glass break whilst being polished you should not be expected to pay for any time spent on that individual unit. Glass polishers are unlikely to accept any liability for a broken glass unit as it is an inherent risk of glass polishing. The truth is that if the unit in question could not be repaired, you would need to replace it anyway, so by not being charged for the work on it, you are not losing out.
Having said all of this – it is rare for a professional glass polisher to break glass whist polishing and most of will be able to tell you in advance if they feel there is a risk of glass breaking. Do not let the issue of glass breaking put you off. It is rare, but it is a risk to be aware of.
Glass Coatings – If glass has an external coating, such as a self cleaning coating, if cannot be repaired without removing the coating. This presents a problem. Either you polish the entire glass surface (time is money) and remove the coating from the entire unit or you repair just the scratch damaged areas. This will most likely leave you with a kind of port hole effect on your glass. You cannot reapply coatings to single patches or areas as an exact colour match is virtually impossible to achieve. You would still end up with a port hole effect.
Note: U.V coatings are applied to the internal cavity of a double glazed window so polishing does not affect the coating.
Filmed Glass – If a glass surface has an applied film, such as anti graffiti film, you cannot polish the glass without removing the film first.
Window Tints – As tints are manufactured into the glass, polishing has no affect on the tints. Please check that your tints are genuine and not an applied film.