How To Lift Glass

Whether moving a single sheet or a large quantity of glazing, it is very important to follow best working practices when lifting glass. There are two main options when it comes to lifting a single pane of glass: lifting it manually or lifting it with glass vacuum lifters.

How to lift glass manually

If you are only working with smaller panes of glass, perhaps on a small home improvement project, it might be possible to lift each pane by yourself. If this is the case, make sure you follow the guidance below:

  • Firstly ascertain the weight of the glass – glass area in meters x thickness in mm by 2.5 will tell you roughly the weight in kg’s. Multiply this by 2.2 to give you the weight in pounds. Generally work on lifting no more than 20kg (44lbs) per person.
  • Then inspect the glass so that it is not damaged or likely to break easily. In particular look at the edges of the glass to identify any small cracks or shelled edges.
  • Glass that is 6mm or 1/4” or thinner will become very unstable if not carried correctly or damaged.
  • Always use the appropriate safety gear like safety glasses, wrist gauntlets, cut proof gloves, safety shoes and ensure you’re wearing long sleeves and trousers.
  • Using a hand held vacuum cup will make handling the glass a lot safer. Position the vacuum cup near the bottom edge of the glass. Test the vacuum cup on the glass to ensure that the vacuum is maintained.
  • Make sure the glass is clean and dry.
  • Inspect the area and path of travel to ensure it is safe to walk and move the glass.
  • Always carry each pane of glass at your side, using one hand on the vacuum cup and the other hand higher on the glass to balance it during transport.
  • Adopt postures that ensure you will not be in immediate danger in the event of a breakage.
  • Remain aware of your surroundings and the position of your co-workers at all times.
  • Never try to carry glass above the height of your head or under your arms.
  • Use two people to move larger sheets that cannot safely be handled alone.

By following the above suggestions, you should be able to move smaller panes of glass in relative safety. However, if you will be lifting larger glass panes and would like to ensure that all lifting is accomplished in the safest manner possible, you will need to use professional glass lifting equipment.

How to lift heavy glass with vacuum lifters

Whether you invest in a small, portable glass vacuum lifter that can handle up to 330lbs or a forklift attachment that can lift up to 1,800lbs, the suction cups and powerful vacuum pumps do all the heavy lifting.

The main safety points to bear in mind when learning how to lift heavy glass with vacuum lifters are as follows:

  • Never let untrained personnel operate the equipment.
  • Always check the weight of the glass and load capacity before starting a job.
  • Never attempt to lift damaged glass, as the vacuum grip may be too weak.
  • Never leave loads suspended.
  • Lift each sheet of glass at the lowest practical height.
  • Follow all manufacturer instructions.

If you would like any more tips on how to lift glass, especially larger sheets in large quantities, you can visit our helpful videos. Alternatively, please do not hesitate to contact us for personal assistance. At Quattro Lifts, we specialize in designing, developing, and manufacturing commercial glass lifting equipment and are always happy to help when we can.

Please feel free to browse our range of highly-capable lifters and call or message us if you want to talk to one of our experts about any of the models we offer.