A Step-by-Step Guide: How to Toe and Heel

toe and heeling

Toeing and heeling glass is a critical technique used in the installation of large glass panels or windows.

This process involves precisely aligning and securing the glass to ensure stability, proper weight distribution, and optimal performance. In our latest blog, we will provide an overview on how to toe and heel glass, enabling you to achieve a successful and secure glass installation.

  1. Understanding Toe and Heel
    Toe and heel refer to the two support points used to secure glass panels. The “toe” refers to the bottom corner or edge of the glass, while the “heel” refers to the top corner or edge. The toe support prevents the glass from sliding or shifting horizontally, while the heel support prevents vertical movement. By effectively toeing and heeling the glass, you create a balanced and stable installation that can withstand environmental forces, such as wind loads and vibrations.
  2. Preparing the Installation Area
    Before beginning the toe and heel process, it is crucial to ensure that the installation area is clean, level, and free of any debris or obstructions. Clear the area and make necessary adjustments to ensure a flat and stable surface. Additionally, verify that the surrounding framing or support structure is appropriately prepared and structurally sound.
  3. Positioning and Aligning the Glass
    Carefully lift the glass panel into position, ensuring it is aligned correctly with the frame or opening. Use suction cups or other lifting devices to handle the glass safely. It is essential to have a team of trained professionals to assist with this process to ensure the glass is not damaged during handling. Once positioned, check for even gaps between the glass and the frame on all sides to ensure a consistent fit.
  4. Applying Toe Support
    To provide toe support, insert shims or adjustable support blocks at the bottom corners of the glass panel. These support elements should be positioned horizontally and secured tightly against the frame or sill. Adjust the shims or blocks to achieve the desired level of support, ensuring the glass is stable and does not move horizontally.
  5. Adding Heel Support
    For heel support, attach glass stoppers or brackets to the top corners of the glass panel. These brackets should be installed vertically and securely fastened to the frame or header. Make sure the stoppers or brackets are properly aligned with the glass and tightly secured to prevent any vertical movement.
  6. Finalising the Installation
    Once the toe and heel supports are in place, carefully inspect the glass installation. Check for any gaps, misalignments, or issues with the support elements. Make necessary adjustments to ensure a precise fit and proper weight distribution. Additionally, verify that the glass is level and plumb using a spirit level. Once satisfied with the installation, seal any gaps between the glass and the frame with appropriate sealants or gaskets to enhance weatherproofing and prevent air or water infiltration.

Toe and heel glass installation is a vital process for ensuring stability and performance in large glass panels such as our aluminium bifolding doors and our aluminium sliding doors. By following the steps outlined in this guide, you can achieve a secure and balanced glass installation, providing long-lasting durability and functionality. Proper toeing and heeling techniques contribute to the overall success and aesthetics of any glass project.

Take a look at our video guides to help with this and other aspects of door installation