Garage Door Glass and the Law

© 2002 Door & Access Systems
Publish Date: Winter 2002
Author: Tom Wadsworth
Page 50

Technical Tips

Garage Door Glass and the Law

Broken glass is a danger and a constant concern of building codes. Federal glazing (glass-related) laws and building codes aim to prevent injury to people by imposing requirements on certain glazed doors.

As a general rule, glazed garage doors are not considered a hazardous location, but certain situations may make these garage doors subject to the glazing laws and codes.

Hazardous Locations
You should be aware of a few hazardous locations that could impact garage doors:

1. Glazing in ingress and egress doors. Under normal circumstances, garage doors are not considered either an ingress door or an egress door for pedestrians. But if you have a situation where a glazed garage door might be interpreted as an ingress or egress door, the code might apply to the door.
2. Glazing in fixed and sliding panels of sliding doors. These doors are typically patio type doors used for ingress/egress. Normally, garage doors do not apply.
3. Glazing in a fixed or operable panel. In order for this situation to apply to a garage door, several specific conditions must be met. These conditions apply to the size of the individual panes of glass, the distance from the floor to the glazed area, and the proximity of the glazing to a walking surface. Again, garage doors typically do not apply.
4. "Sloped Glazing." When the garage door is in the fully open position, one might think that glazed garage doors apply to this situation. However, glazing in garage doors is not considered "sloped glazing."

However, as always, the local building official is responsible for final interpretation.

For more specific details about glazing in garage doors, ask for DASMA Technical Data Sheet (TDS) 158, prepared by DASMA's Commercial & Residential Garage Door Division Technical Committee. To obtain a free copy of TDS 158, call DASMA at 216-241-7333 or go to