How to Break Glass Quietly

How to Break Glass Quietly

If you think you’ll never need to break a pane of glass quietly, think again. If you find yourself locked out of your home and have no way to get inside, breaking a window and climbing in through that window might be the best and fastest way to get back into your home, but how do you do this without making a lot of noise?

After all, both neighbors and passersby might hear the glass shattering and call the authorities, which can wreak havoc on the situation.

Fortunately, there are ways you can break a pane of glass without making huge amounts of noise, and below are descriptions of some of those ways.

6 Ways to Break Glass Silently

  1. The Duct Tape Method
  2. The Spark Plug Method
  3. The Steel Center Punch Method
  4. Use an Emergency Hammer
  5. Use a Standard Hammer on Double-Glazed Windows
  6. Use a Standard EMT Device

Materials Needed

  • Duct tape (any color)
  • Thick blankets
  • Thick pillow
  • Hammer
  • Spark plug
  • Ceramic (carbide) balls or another shaped device
  • Steel center punch
  • Emergency hammer
  • EMT/EMS portable device

1. The Duct Tape Method

duct tape

This is a simple method of breaking panes of glass without making too much noise.

You simply cover the entire piece of glass with duct tape without leaving any of the glass visible. Cover one or both sides of the glass completely, then place several very thick blankets below the glass.

If it is a piece of glass that you can do this with, go ahead and set the entire piece on a pile of blankets (this won’t be possible if you’re trying to break a window in your home or office).

To play it even safer, you should next place a thick pillow on top of the glass before tapping it lightly with a hammer.

The duct tape will prevent the glass from flying everywhere and the pillow will prevent much of the noise from occurring.

The important thing to remember is to make sure every inch of the glass is covered with the duct tape before you start using the hammer.

Any glass showing through is subject to falling on or near where you are and is potentially dangerous to everyone in the area.

2. The Spark Plug Method

spark plug

This is another easy and inexpensive method of breaking glass without making any noise. Simply look for the white, nonmetal part of a spark plug, which is usually made out of some type of ceramic material.

Use that part to break the glass. For some reason, this seems to break a piece of glass quickly and without a lot of noise.

You can also use ceramic (carbide) balls that you’ll often find at a hardware store to do the same thing. In fact, you just throw the object at the window corners, and in most cases you won’t need much force to break the glass.

This is a relatively inexpensive but effective solution when you need to break glass without calling attention to yourself. It is especially useful when you need to break a car window. The glass in car windows is made differently than panes of glass in a home’s window and is very hard to break.

When you use the spark plug, target the corners of the window because this is where the glass is weakest. You can often throw the spark plug, which is very lightweight, at those parts of the glass because this is usually even easier to do.

3. The Steel Center Punch Method

steel center punch

A heavy-duty steel center punch is a small tool that has a point on one side and which can be used to break a car window in an emergency.

They are usually priced at under $30 and make a perfect item to keep in your car for these types of situations. Again, aim the tool toward the outside corners of the glass for the best results, and you’ll likely find that you can be successful without applying too much force.

The tool’s official use is to make dimples in certain materials, but it works perfectly for breaking glass in a car window thanks to its shape and overall size. It is also lightweight and compact, so you can easily keep one in the glove compartment of your vehicle.

Why does this method and the spark plug method work? It’s because car windows use tempered glass, which is harder than the glass used in a window pane. When tempered glass is made, it cools rapidly and therefore has a lower density than regular glass.

The outside glass will cool much faster and it then compresses the glass on the inside of the window. In other words, tempered glass has a lot of tension, so a steel center punch or even a spark plug breaks the glass with little effort on your part.

4. Use an Emergency Hammer

emergency hammer

In many first aid kits made specifically for vehicles, there is often an emergency hammer that is made to crack the glass in car windows without it being too loud.

If you don’t have one, you can usually buy one separately at the local hardware store. These are small hammers that come with a seatbelt cutter and which have metallic tips.

These emergency hammers are used to crunch the windows without making a lot of noise because all you hear is the chunks of glass dropping to the ground.

Fortunately, emergency hammers are very inexpensive and are usually found at hardware stores, auto stores, and even online. They can truly save a life in certain instances and it is always good to have one of them in your vehicle and even in your home.

5. Use a Standard Hammer on Double-Glazed Windows


When you’re inside of the home and you have a fire and need to get out quickly, a hammer can help you break through a double-pane window before you know it. Instead of picking up an object and throwing it through the window, take a regular hammer and tap the corners of the window.

Remember, the corner of a window is its weakest point. If you hit the corners of the window then break a hole in the middle of it with a hard object, the glass will break into many small pieces, making it super easy for you to escape.

6. Use a Standard EMT Device

A standard 3-in-1 EMT device is a portable knife with three separate pieces: a glass breaker, a seatbelt cutter, and a steel serrated blade. It is a multipurpose device that normally sells for under $20 and is therefore affordable for everyone.

Because they are small, you can keep one in your glove compartment or even in a tool drawer in your kitchen. If you purchase one of these tools, it is a good idea to get familiar with it before you have to use it for the first time.

Go ahead and study it so that if you do have an emergency in your car or your home, you’ll know exactly what to do to get out of your emergency situation.

You’ll also notice that many of these devices are bright orange in color. This can help when you’re in an emergency situation because in these situations, you’ll be nervous and you might start fumbling around trying to find the tool you need. With a bright orange color, you’ll notice the tool immediately and you’ll be able to start using it right away, which is a huge help especially in life-threatening situations.

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