Summary

glaziers image
Glaziers may use specialized equipment to move windows into place.
Quick Facts: Glaziers
2016 Median Pay $41,920 per year
$20.16 per hour
Typical Entry-Level Education High school diploma or equivalent
Work Experience in a Related Occupation None
On-the-job Training Apprenticeship
Number of Jobs, 2016 50,100
Job Outlook, 2016-26 11% (Faster than average)
Employment Change, 2016-26 5,300

What Glaziers Do

Glaziers install glass in windows, skylights, and other fixtures in storefronts and buildings.

Work Environment

As in many other construction trades, the work of glaziers is physically demanding. They may experience cuts from tools and glass, and falls from ladders and scaffolding. Most work full time.

How to Become a Glazier

Glaziers typically enter the occupation with a high school diploma and learn their trade through an apprenticeship or on-the-job training.

Pay

The median annual wage for glaziers was $41,920 in May 2016.

Job Outlook

Employment of glaziers is projected to grow 11 percent from 2016 to 2026, faster than the average for all occupations. Good job opportunities are expected from growth in the construction industries and from the need to replace glaziers who leave the occupation each year.

State & Area Data

Explore resources for employment and wages by state and area for glaziers.

Similar Occupations

Compare the job duties, education, job growth, and pay of glaziers with similar occupations.

More Information, Including Links to O*NET

Learn more about glaziers by visiting additional resources, including O*NET, a source on key characteristics of workers and occupations.

What Glaziers Do About this section

Glaziers
Suction handles are used to pick up and maneuver glass.

Glaziers install glass in windows, skylights, and other fixtures in storefronts and buildings.

Duties

Glaziers typically do the following:

  • Follow blueprints and specifications
  • Remove any old or broken glass before installing replacement glass
  • Cut glass to the specified size and shape
  • Use measuring tape, plumb lines, and levels to ensure proper fitting installation
  • Make or install sashes and moldings for glass installation
  • Fasten glass into sashes or frames with clips, moldings, or other types of fasteners
  • Add weather seal or putty around pane edges to seal joints

Glass has many uses in everyday life. For example, insulated and specially treated glass keeps in warm or cool air and controls sound and condensation. Tempered and laminated glass makes doors and windows more secure by making them less prone to breaking. Glaziers specialize in installing these different glass products.

In homes, glaziers install or replace windows, mirrors, shower doors, and bathtub enclosures. They fit glass for tabletops and display cases. On commercial interior projects, glaziers install items such as room dividers and security windows. Glazing projects may also involve exterior work such as replacing storefront windows for supermarkets, auto dealerships, banks, and other establishments.

For most large-scale construction jobs, glass is precut and mounted into frames at a factory or a contractor’s shop. The finished glass arrives at the jobsite ready for glaziers to position and secure into place. Using cranes or hoists with suction cups, workers lift large, heavy pieces of glass for installation. In cases where the glass is not secure inside the frame, glaziers may attach steel and aluminum sashes or frames to the building, and then secure the glass with clips, moldings, or other types of fasteners.

Many windows are now being covered with laminates—a thin film or coating placed over the glass. These coatings provide additional durability, security, and can add color or tint to interior and exterior glass. The laminate also provides safety benefits by making glass less prone to shattering, which makes it ideal for commercial use.

Workers who replace and repair glass in motor vehicles are covered in the automotive body and glass repairers profile.

Work Environment About this section

Glaziers
Glaziers may need to work at great heights.

Glaziers held about 50,100 jobs in 2016. The largest employers of glaziers were as follows:

Foundation, structure, and building exterior contractors 68%
Building material and garden equipment and supplies dealers 12
Building finishing contractors 6
Self-employed workers 5
Manufacturing 3

As in many other construction trades, the work of glaziers is physically demanding. They spend most of the day standing, bending, or reaching, and they often must lift and maneuver heavy, cumbersome materials, such as large glass plates.

Injuries and Illnesses

Glaziers have a higher rate of injuries and illnesses than the national average. Typical injuries for glaziers include falls and overexertion.

Work Schedules

Most glaziers work full time.

How to Become a Glazier About this section

Glaziers
Glaziers typically learn their trade through a 4-year apprenticeship or on-the-job training.

Glaziers typically enter the occupation with a high school diploma and learn their trade through an apprenticeship or on-the-job training.

Education

Glaziers typically enter the occupation with a high school diploma or equivalent.

Training

Glaziers typically learn their trade through a 4-year apprenticeship or on-the-job training. On the job, they learn to use the tools and equipment of the trade; handle, measure, cut, and install glass and metal framing; cut and fit moldings; and install and balance glass doors. Technical training includes learning different installation techniques, as well as basic mathematics, blueprint reading and sketching, general construction techniques, safety practices, and first aid.

A few groups sponsor apprenticeship programs, including several union and contractor associations. Most programs require apprentices to have a high school diploma or equivalent and be at least 18 years old. After completing an apprenticeship program, glaziers are considered to be journey workers who may do tasks on their own.

Licenses, Certifications, and Registrations

Some states may require glaziers to have a license; check with your state for more information. Licensure requirements typically include passing a test and possessing a combination of education and work experience.

Important Qualities

Balance. Glaziers need a good sense of balance while handling large panes of glass or while working on ladders or scaffolds.

Communication. Glaziers need to be able to communicate effectively with other team members and with customers to ensure the work is done precisely and on time.

Hand–eye coordination. Glaziers must be able to cut glass precisely. As a result, a steady hand is needed to cut the correct size and shape in the field.

Physical stamina. Glaziers work on their feet and move heavy pieces of glass most of the day. They need to be able to hold glass in place until it can be fully secured.

Physical strength. Glaziers must often lift heavy pieces of glass for hanging. Physical strength, therefore, is important for the occupation.

Pay About this section

Glaziers

Median annual wages, May 2016

Construction trades workers

$42,310

Glaziers

$41,920

Total, all occupations

$37,040

 

The median annual wage for glaziers was $41,920 in May 2016. The median wage is the wage at which half the workers in an occupation earned more than that amount and half earned less. The lowest 10 percent earned less than $26,820, and the highest 10 percent earned more than $81,050.

In May 2016, the median annual wages for glaziers in the top industries in which they worked were as follows:

Building finishing contractors $48,360
Foundation, structure, and building exterior contractors 42,720
Building material and garden equipment and supplies dealers 38,060
Manufacturing 37,130

The starting pay for apprentices is less than what fully trained glaziers make. They receive more pay as they learn to do more. Glaziers who work at heights may be eligible for hazard pay.

Most glaziers work full time.

Job Outlook About this section

Glaziers

Percent change in employment, projected 2016-26

Construction trades workers

11%

Glaziers

11%

Total, all occupations

7%

 

Employment of glaziers is projected to grow 11 percent from 2016 to 2026, faster than the average for all occupations.

Demand for glaziers stems both from new construction and the need to repair and replace windows and other glass in existing buildings. The availability of prefabricated windows that carpenters and construction laborers can install is expected to moderate the employment growth of glaziers.

Job Prospects

Job opportunities should be good because of growth in the construction industries. Workers will also be needed to replace the glaziers who leave the occupation each year.

Like many other types of construction worker jobs, employment of glaziers is sensitive to the fluctuations of the economy. On the one hand, glaziers may experience periods of unemployment when the overall level of construction falls. On the other hand, shortages of workers may occur in some areas during peak periods of building activity.

Employment projections data for glaziers, 2016-26
Occupational Title SOC Code Employment, 2016 Projected Employment, 2026 Change, 2016-26 Employment by Industry
Percent Numeric

SOURCE: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, Employment Projections program

Glaziers

47-2121 50,100 55,400 11 5,300 employment projections excel document xlsx

State & Area Data About this section

Occupational Employment Statistics (OES)

The Occupational Employment Statistics (OES) program produces employment and wage estimates annually for over 800 occupations. These estimates are available for the nation as a whole, for individual states, and for metropolitan and nonmetropolitan areas. The link(s) below go to OES data maps for employment and wages by state and area.

Projections Central

Occupational employment projections are developed for all states by Labor Market Information (LMI) or individual state Employment Projections offices. All state projections data are available at www.projectionscentral.com. Information on this site allows projected employment growth for an occupation to be compared among states or to be compared within one state. In addition, states may produce projections for areas; there are links to each state’s websites where these data may be retrieved.

CareerOneStop

CareerOneStop includes hundreds of occupational profiles with data available by state and metro area. There are links in the left-hand side menu to compare occupational employment by state and occupational wages by local area or metro area. There is also a salary info tool to search for wages by zip code.

Similar Occupations About this section

This table shows a list of occupations with job duties that are similar to those of glaziers.

Occupation Job Duties ENTRY-LEVEL EDUCATION Help 2016 MEDIAN PAY Help
Automotive body and glass repairers

Automotive Body and Glass Repairers

Automotive body and glass repairers restore, refinish, and replace vehicle bodies and frames, windshields, and window glass.

High school diploma or equivalent $40,370
Carpenters

Carpenters

Carpenters construct, repair, and install building frameworks and structures made from wood and other materials.

High school diploma or equivalent $43,600
Construction laborers and helpers

Construction Laborers and Helpers

Construction laborers and helpers perform many tasks that require physical labor on construction sites.

See How to Become One $32,230
Drywall and ceiling tile installers, and tapers

Drywall and Ceiling Tile Installers, and Tapers

Drywall and ceiling tile installers hang wallboard and install ceiling tile inside buildings. Tapers prepare the wallboard for painting, using tape and other materials. Many workers both install and tape wallboard.

No formal educational credential $42,280
Brickmasons, blockmasons, and stonemasons

Masonry Workers

Masonry workers, also known as masons, use bricks, concrete blocks, concrete, and natural and manmade stones to build walls, walkways, fences, and other masonry structures.

See How to Become One $41,330
Sheet metal workers

Sheet Metal Workers

Sheet metal workers fabricate or install products that are made from thin metal sheets, such as ducts used in heating and air conditioning systems.

High school diploma or equivalent $46,940
solar photovoltaic installers image

Solar Photovoltaic Installers

Solar photovoltaic (PV) installers, also known as PV installers, assemble, install, and maintain solar panel systems on rooftops or other structures.

High school diploma or equivalent $39,240
Tile and marble setters

Flooring Installers and Tile and Marble Setters

Flooring installers and tile and marble setters lay and finish carpet, wood, vinyl, and tile.

No formal educational credential $39,150

Contacts for More Information About this section

For more details about apprenticeships or other work opportunities in this trade, contact the offices of the state employment service, the state apprenticeship agency, local contractors or firms that employ glaziers, or local union-management finishing trade apprenticeship committees. Apprenticeship information is available from the U.S. Department of Labor's ApprenticeshipUSA program online or by phone at 877-872-5627.

For more information about glaziers, visit

Associated Builders and Contractors, Inc.

Finishing Trades Institute

International Union of Painters and Allied Trades

National Glass Association

O*NET

Glaziers

Suggested citation:

Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Outlook Handbook, Glaziers,
on the Internet at https://www.bls.gov/ooh/construction-and-extraction/glaziers.htm (visited November 19, 2017).

Last Modified Date: Tuesday, October 24, 2017

What They Do

The What They Do tab describes the typical duties and responsibilities of workers in the occupation, including what tools and equipment they use and how closely they are supervised. This tab also covers different types of occupational specialties.

Work Environment

The Work Environment tab includes the number of jobs held in the occupation and describes the workplace, the level of physical activity expected, and typical hours worked. It may also discuss the major industries that employed the occupation. This tab may also describe opportunities for part-time work, the amount and type of travel required, any safety equipment that is used, and the risk of injury that workers may face.

How to Become One

The How to Become One tab describes how to prepare for a job in the occupation. This tab can include information on education, training, work experience, licensing and certification, and important qualities that are required or helpful for entering or working in the occupation.

Pay

The Pay tab describes typical earnings and how workers in the occupation are compensated—annual salaries, hourly wages, commissions, tips, or bonuses. Within every occupation, earnings vary by experience, responsibility, performance, tenure, and geographic area. For most profiles, this tab has a table with wages in the major industries employing the occupation. It does not include pay for self-employed workers, agriculture workers, or workers in private households because these data are not collected by the Occupational Employment Statistics (OES) survey, the source of BLS wage data in the OOH.

State & Area Data

The State and Area Data tab provides links to state and area occupational data from the Occupational Employment Statistics (OES) program, state projections data from Projections Central, and occupational information from the Department of Labor's CareerOneStop.

Job Outlook

The Job Outlook tab describes the factors that affect employment growth or decline in the occupation, and in some instances, describes the relationship between the number of job seekers and the number of job openings.

Similar Occupations

The Similar Occupations tab describes occupations that share similar duties, skills, interests, education, or training with the occupation covered in the profile.

Contacts for More Information

The More Information tab provides the Internet addresses of associations, government agencies, unions, and other organizations that can provide additional information on the occupation. This tab also includes links to relevant occupational information from the Occupational Information Network (O*NET).

2016 Median Pay

The wage at which half of the workers in the occupation earned more than that amount and half earned less. Median wage data are from the BLS Occupational Employment Statistics survey. In May 2016, the median annual wage for all workers was $37,040.

On-the-job Training

Additional training needed (postemployment) to attain competency in the skills needed in this occupation.

Entry-level Education

Typical level of education that most workers need to enter this occupation.

Work experience in a related occupation

Work experience that is commonly considered necessary by employers, or is a commonly accepted substitute for more formal types of training or education.

Number of Jobs, 2016

The employment, or size, of this occupation in 2016, which is the base year of the 2016-26 employment projections.

Job Outlook, 2016-26

The projected percent change in employment from 2016 to 2026. The average growth rate for all occupations is 7 percent.

Employment Change, 2016-26

The projected numeric change in employment from 2016 to 2026.

Entry-level Education

Typical level of education that most workers need to enter this occupation.

On-the-job Training

Additional training needed (postemployment) to attain competency in the skills needed in this occupation.

Employment Change, projected 2016-26

The projected numeric change in employment from 2016 to 2026.

Growth Rate (Projected)

The percent change of employment for each occupation from 2016 to 2026.

Projected Number of New Jobs

The projected numeric change in employment from 2016 to 2026.

Projected Growth Rate

The projected percent change in employment from 2016 to 2026.

2016 Median Pay

The wage at which half of the workers in the occupation earned more than that amount and half earned less. Median wage data are from the BLS Occupational Employment Statistics survey. In May 2016, the median annual wage for all workers was $37,040.