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Glass blocks are building materials that can act as functional decor and security in your home. A glass block shower wall or kitchen partition adds beauty to your indoor spaces. Glass block windows in your basement or bathroom help maintain privacy when a simple window treatment won’t do. This guide will show you how to install glass block windows or wall partitions in your home.
Whether you are installing a glass block window or a wall, we have different glass block sizes to complete the project:
- Use a tape measure to measure the area where you are installing the glass block and determine the glass block sizes that will fit
- Make sure you’re installing over moisture barrier panels such as cement board
- Use a level to even out the installation space
Tip: Draw a diagram of the intended installation to set a foundation for installing glass blocks in your windows, bathroom or kitchen. If your wall is tall or wide, install reinforcing strips to secure the opening.
Installing the Right Glass Block
There are different types and sizes of glass blocks to accommodate your design such as diamond, ice or ribbed styles. Be sure to choose the matching corner glass block to complete your project. There are different things to consider when choosing your glass blocks:
Size: Most common sizes are 7.75- x 7.75-inch and 5.75- x 5.75-inch.
Decor: Choose a clear glass block with a pattern for a decorative accent.
Privacy: Choose a glass block with a bold pattern and opaque glass for enhanced security.
Kits: There are many glass block accessories required. Consider whether you want to buy a kit or individual components.
Mix the Glass Block Mortar
Begin by mixing your glass block mortar. Check the instructions on your tile mortar mix for proper mixing instructions. It's recommended to mix white masonry cement, mortar cement and sand with water. Alternatively, silicone spacers are also available.
Apply Bed of Mortar to Level the Surface
Once your mortar is mixed, use a brick trowel to apply a bed to the surface. Make sure the surface you're applying the mortar to is moisture resistant, such as cement board. Use a sill plate and bed the block with glass spacers as you work your way down the wall.
Tip: Make sure your bed is as level as possible while preparing it for the block to sit on. This will make installation easier and more stable.
Add Glass Block to Surface
Create your first row of glass blocks by adding each block one by one. Be sure to level as you work. Once you lay the block, add mortar and spacers as you move along the wall. Continue to make sure the wall is straight as you progress.
Reinforce When Installing Glass Blocks
Fix anchors and reinforcing rods every two feet to provide strength and stability when installing glass blocks.
Clean Mortar Residue
Repeat the above steps until you’ve completed the wall. When installing glass block windows with mortar, use a damp cleaning cloth to remove any stray mortar or residue off the faces of the block. Keep a cleaning bucket on hand to clean your tools as you work. Allow the mortar to cure and settle into the glass block for 24 to 48 hours.
Tip: If temperatures are very hot, the mortar will need to be kept moistened and allowed to naturally dry during the curing period. If necessary, use a spray bottle with water on the glass block and cover or surround the glass block area with plastic or a large trash bag.
Seal the Glass Blocks
- When the mortar has completely set, seal the perimeter and joints with a glass block sealant.
Now that you know how to install glass block, you can add security and functional decor to your home. Opt for a kit with all the supplies needed, or purchase the individual components if better suited for your project. Use The Home Depot Mobile App to locate products and check inventory. We’ll take you to the exact aisle and bay.