Do you know how much it costs to have a piece of glass Cut?
Do you think that cutting glass at home is too hard, or dangerous?
Getting a piece of glass cut from a hardware store has become harder and much more expensive than 20 years ago.
Years Ago: We had 6 small pieces of glass cut for the outside lights/lanterns on our garage. We bought a large piece of glass for about $15 at Home Depot and they cut it for free.
Things have really changed since then. We were looking at a $20 charge for 3 small pieces of glass.
Keep reading to learn how much we paid to replace 3 small pieces of glass on a borrowed lantern that we used at our daughter’s wedding.
TABLE OF CONTENTS
Can You Cut Glass at Home?
We’ll show you how we cut glass at home for next to nothing.
If you want to skip to the video of how we cut a piece of replacement glass at home, just scroll to the bottom of the page!
Broken Glass at a Wedding
During the setup of our daughter Becky’s wedding reception, one of the 12 borrowed lanterns used to decorate the stage was dropped (you can see them in the background of the picture above). As a result, 3 panes of glass were broken.
We quickly picked up the broken pieces and borrowed a replacement lantern from our friend who loaned us the other lanterns. Then we went on with the wedding reception and It was a glorious time.
Do Home Depot and Ace Cut Glass?
A few days after the wedding, Steve decided to call Home Depot to find out how much it would cost to get 3 small (5” x 8”) pieces of glass cut.
He was thinking with his 1980’s brain – expecting the price to be around $10.
At Home Depot, he was told that they sold glass, but they no longer did glass cutting. Steve was referred to a nearby Ace Hardware.
The clerk at Ace Hardware told Steve over the phone that it would cost $2 for each cut and about $20 for the glass.
The total would be somewhere between $30 and $40 depending on how the glass was cut. Getting this lantern fixed was definitely not cheap.
Lowes Cuts Glass
We discover Update 2019: We were in a Lowe’s Store in August 2019 and found that they will cut glass for you. They have a special glass cutting booth built to be super safe.
We talked with Bennie at our local Lowes and he said that if you buy the glass from them, they will cut it for you at no charge. Even if you wanted several cuts out of one piece of glass.
Call your local Lowes to confirm.
The Dilemma – Repair or Replace
The borrowed lantern cost somewhere between $30 and $50.
Since the glass was broken, we needed to fix it. The cost to replace the glass at ACE Hardware was greater than the cost of the lantern.
Should we buy another lantern? We started looking, but the problem was that this lantern was from a matching group of 6. And the chances of finding one that matched was pretty slim.
The DIY Discount Glass Cutting Option
Steve knew that there had to be another way, and told Annette he was going to cut the glass himself.
He watched a couple of YouTube videos and then went to his workshop to find a glass cutter. He came up empty-handed in his search, so we decided to look online to see how much a glass cutter cost.
The price at Home Depot was about $5, on eBay we found them a little cheaper at about $4.50 with shipping.
Then he decided to check Michaels and found an oil chamber glass cutter for $7, but by using one of their 40 percent off coupons the price came down to about $5 with tax. The DIY option to cut our own glass seemed to be the way to go here.
A Clever Way to Buy Glass – Thrift Store Picture Frames
With the oil-based cutter in hand, Steve needed to buy some glass. But then a light bulb went off in his head.
Didn’t we have a lot of old picture frames in the garage?
Yes! And many of them were given to us or bought at garage sales for $1 each.
We were sure if we looked carefully, we would find a picture frame with a big enough piece of glass for this project. Sure enough, we found one!
He set up a cutting mat on a table, measured the glass, and marked it with a Sharpie marker.
Using a metal straight edge and the oil cutter from Michael’s he was able to quickly cut the three pieces of glass in about 20 minutes.
When he put them in the lantern and cleaned them, you’d never know that the glass had been replaced. Learning to cut glass at home wasn’t so hard to do after all.
The Final Costs for the Cutting Glass Project
Total Cost was about $6
Total saved was about $24 to $50
The total time spent was about one hour when you calculate in two phone calls, a trip to Michaels, cutting the glass and reassembling the lantern.
How We Cut Glass Video
In the video below, Steve demonstrates how he used the same glass cutter to cut new glass for one of our picture frames and this glass cutting project. It’s so simple and inexpensive to cut your own glass.