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Riot Glass® retrofit systems consist of custom-made security glass and framing designs that provide maximum protection against forced entry and ballistic threats.

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Virtually unbreakable retrofit solutions

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Ideal protection against active threats

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Riot Glass® can be used to secure any building. Virtually invisible yet nearly indestructible, it blends seamlessly in almost any existing window, door, or

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Why Reinforcing Commercial Storefront Doors and Windows Is So Important

Written By: Brittney PhillipsSeptember 9, 2021

According to the U.S. Department of Justice, more than 28% of burglaries occur in non-residential locations. This means in retail stores, offices, and other types of commercial facilities.

That’s why it’s of the utmost importance for business owners and commercial facility owners to ensure that their properties are secure when it comes to forced entry.

brick building with glass windows storefront

In this article, we’ll take a closer look at the role commercial storefront doors and windows play in building security, and give you some ideas for how to reinforce your property with commercial security doors and security glass products.

The Importance of Commercial Storefront Doors and Windows

What Purposes Do Commercial Storefront Doors Serve?

Storefront doors serve both practical and aesthetic purposes. Of course, they are the main way in and out for customers, clients, employees, and others coming and going from your business or commercial facility.

stairs in building with glass doors going in

When it comes to retail stores, an inviting storefront door can help attract customers to come in and browse your selection of products. Oftentimes, such storefront doors are made of glass or a combination of glass and aluminum, so they blend in with a modern glass storefront.

Besides the more obvious functional and aesthetic purposes of commercial storefront doors, they are also an important part of your property’s security. 

Commercial doors should be durable and secure enough to keep out inclement weather, prevent break-ins, and generally protect everyone and everything inside your facility.

Some Purposes of Commercial Doors:

  • Serve as a primary access point to the business or facility
  • Encourage customers to come into stores
  • Can be made of glass as part of a glass storefront
  • Keep bad weather outside
  • Should be strong enough to keep bad guys out too

What Purposes Do Storefront Windows Serve?

Like doors, commercial storefront windows serve functional purposes and contribute to the curb appeal of your business.

Large all-glass or mainly glass storefronts allow a lot of natural light in as well as provide views of the outdoors, making the commercial space pleasant and easy to shop and do business in. 

Retail stores can benefit greatly from having large glass windows to display their products in, enticing passersby to stop and come in to browse the store.

glass store front

Your commercial windows should also be strong enough to withstand the elements and at the very least delay or deter forced entry — if not prevent it completely.

Some Purposes of Commercial Windows:

  • Allow natural light in
  • Provide views outside
  • Let retailers display products
  • Protect against inclement weather
  • Should withstand burglary and smash-and-grab theft attempts

Commercial Storefront Doors and Windows and Burglary

What do almost all burglaries have in common? In the majority of cases, the thieves gain access to a property through a vulnerable window or door.

Experienced burglars and opportunistic thieves can look at a storefront and identify its biggest insecurities. 

More often than not, breaking in is just a matter of smashing a pane of glass in a door to open it from the inside, or breaking a window and stepping right in.


Criminals know how to get in and out of a business very quickly, so even if your property is alarmed and monitored, they could be long gone with the goods by the time the authorities arrive.

By far the best way to keep the bad guys out of your property is to create strong physical barriers to forced entry. For commercial storefront doors and windows, this means reinforcing and protecting the glass so it can withstand forced entry attempts.

How To Reinforce Commercial Storefront Doors and Windows

Tips from a Commercial Security Door and Window Expert

Depending on your budget and the level of security you want, there are a few different ways you can reinforce your property’s doors and windows.

For starters, there are the traditional options like replacing your storefront doors with heavy commercial security doors and covering your storefront windows with bars and grates or roll-down shutters. 

bars and grates

But, these are unattractive options, especially if you have a large glass storefront that you want to attract customers, let lots of natural light in, and provide you with visibility outside.

Since we’re the glass security experts, we’re going to focus on how you can protect commercial storefront doors and windows without hurting your business’s curb appeal, blocking out natural light, or limiting your visibility.

Top 3 ways to reinforce commercial glass:

  • Safety and security window film
  • Laminated security glass
  • Polycarbonate glazing shields

Safety and security window film and laminated security glass are two popular choices when it comes to commercial glass reinforcement, but there’s one thing they don’t do: prevent your existing glass from breaking.

Though these products can delay and even potentially prevent forced entry, it’s still possible for determined intruders to get through them. And, in the best case, you’re still going to have to replace the broken glass.

bullet resistant panels

For retail and commercial building security, we prefer the third option: polycarbonate glazing shields. These glazing shields offer a surface hardness and appearance of glass with the virtually unbreakable strength of polycarbonate. 

Polycarbonate glazing shields can be retrofitted into or onto almost any existing framing system, completely protecting the existing window or door glass from cracking and shattering and denying forced entry.

Even the most determined would-be intruder is not going to be able to break through or dislodge the polycarbonate panels.

Our top pick for retailers and other commercial facilities: ArmorPlast™ AP25

ArmorPlast™ AP25 is a containment-grade (non-ballistic) polycarbonate glazing shield, ideal for retail stores and other high-security commercial facilities.

armorplast graphic

Though penetrable by bullets, the glazing shields won’t depreciate  in strength, crack, shatter, or get dislodged, even after multiple high-force impacts or ballistic impacts. It’s perfect for burglary and smash-and-grab protection.

Final Thoughts

Any commercial building’s most vulnerable entry points are its glass doors and windows. That’s why all business owners should take steps to reinforce their commercial storefront doors and windows against forced entry.

Contact us today for more information about how we can help you protect your property from burglary and other threats.

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