Can Airsoft Pellets Break Glass? Myth Busting the Impact

As an airsoft enthusiast, you may wonder if airsoft pellets can break the glass. This common concern is important for safety reasons and for protecting property during airsoft games. This article will examine the elements that affect whether airsoft pellets can break glass.

Several factors come into play when examining the potential of airsoft pellets to break the glass. These factors include the glass type, the weight and material of the pellet, and the velocity at which it’s fired. By being aware of these variables, you can reduce the safety risks associated with operating airsoft weapons near glass surfaces.

Not all pellets, airsoft guns, or glass materials are created equal. By learning about the possible risks and precautions, you can enjoy your airsoft hobby responsibly and protect your surroundings from potential damage.

Types of Glass and Their Resistance

This section will discuss the different types of glass and their resistance to airsoft pellets. The three main types of glass are tempered, laminated, and annealed.

Tempered Glass

Tempered glass is a form of safety glass that is more durable than standard annealed glass. This is because of the heat-treated process it undergoes, resulting in a more balanced internal stress. As a result, tempered glass is more likely to withstand the force when impacted by airsoft pellets.

Laminated Glass

Laminated glass comprises multiple layers of glass held together by a polyvinyl butyral (PVB) layer. The PVB serves as a strong adhesive bond, preventing the glass from shattering into large shards. This makes laminated glass significantly more resistant to airsoft pellets, reducing the likelihood of breakage.

Annealed Glass

Annealed glass is the most basic type of glass commonly found in windows. It is formed through a slow cooling process, which results in a more delicate structure. Because of its weaker nature, annealed glass is more susceptible to breakage when struck by airsoft pellets.

In summary, each type of glass offers varying levels of resistance to airsoft pellets:

  • Tempered Glass: Higher resistance
  • Laminated Glass: Enhanced resistance
  • Annealed Glass: Lower resistance

Airsoft Guns and Their Power

Airsoft guns come in a variety of power levels and types. This section will discuss the three main types: spring-powered, gas-powered, and electric airsoft guns (AEGs). Understanding their power and range capabilities will help you determine if they have the potential to break the glass.

Spring-Powered Airsoft Guns

The most basic and lightest airsoft weapons are spring-powered. They manually compress a spring, which propels the airsoft pellet when the trigger is pulled. Typically, spring-powered guns have a lower range and FPS (feet per second) than other types, making them less likely to break the glass.

Gas-Powered Airsoft Guns

Gas-powered airsoft guns like CO2 or green gas models offer more power and range than spring-powered guns. The gas stored in a canister or cartridge is released to propel the pellet, resulting in higher fps. Although they have more power, gas-powered guns can still struggle to break glass if the FPS is not high enough.

Electric Airsoft Guns (AEGs)

Electric airsoft guns (AEGs) are the most popular and versatile type. AEGs use a battery to power the motor, which drives a piston to compress air and propel the pellet. AEGs usually have adjustable fps and range, making them capable of breaking glass at higher settings.


However, the power necessary to break glass depends on the thickness and quality of the glass in question.

Airsoft Pellets (BBs) and Their Impact

Airsoft pellets, commonly known as BBs, play a crucial role in the sport of airsoft, and they are the projectiles used to hit targets and opponents in airsoft games. This section will explore BBs’ different materials, sizes, and weights and how they impact the likelihood of breaking glass.

BB Materials

There are three main types of BB materials:

  • Plastic: Most standard airsoft BBs are made from lightweight plastic. These are less likely to break glass but can still cause damage if shot at a high velocity.
  • Biodegradable: These BBs are made from bioplastic that decomposes over time. They are similar to plastic BBs in terms of their impact on the glass.
  • Metal: Metal BBs are much heavier and harder than their plastic counterparts. They are more likely to break glass upon impact but are not typically used in airsoft games because of safety concerns.

BB Sizes and Weights

The most common BB size is 6mm, but other sizes, such as 8mm, also exist. The weight of BBs can vary, with these being some typical examples:

Weight (grams)Impact on Glass
0.12Least likely to break glass
0.20Low likelihood of breaking glass
0.25Moderate likelihood of breaking glass
0.30+Higher likelihood of breaking glass

Heavier BBs are likelier to break glass because of their increased kinetic energy. However, factors such as the strength and thickness of the glass, as well as the velocity at which the BBs are fired, also determine whether or not they will shatter the glass upon impact.

Factors That Affect Glass Breaking

This section will discuss the various factors affecting glass breaking regarding airsoft pellets. We will explore two main sub-sections: Distance and Angle and Pellet Velocity.

Distance and Angle

The likelihood of breaking glass with an airsoft pellet increases as you decrease the distance between you and the target. In addition, the angle at which the pellet strikes the glass also plays a vital role. A pellet hitting the glass perpendicularly has a higher chance of causing damage compared to a glancing or angled hit.

Pellet Velocity

Pellet velocity is measured in feet per second (FPS), an essential factor in determining the force of impact on the glass. The greater the fps, the higher the risk of breaking the glass. To illustrate this, consider the following velocities and their corresponding energy levels:

  • 300 fps: Low energy impact, unlikely to break the glass
  • 400 fps: Moderate energy impact, may break thin or weakened glass
  • 500+ fps: High energy impact, the higher chance of breaking the glass

These are general ranges, and the actual breaking threshold will vary depending on the type of glass and its thickness.

Potential Damage to Glass

As an airsoft enthusiast, you might wonder about the potential damage airsoft pellets can cause to glass surfaces. This section will discuss the two kinds of damages that may occur: Scratches and Chips and Cracks and Shattering.

Scratches and Chips

Airsoft pellets, typically made of plastic or biodegradable materials, can cause scratches or chips on glass surfaces. Although not powerful enough to penetrate the glass, they can still leave visible marks, especially on weaker or thinner glass materials.


To minimize this damage, you can use low-velocity airsoft guns or maintain a safe distance from the glass during gameplay. However, accidents may still occur, so protecting valuable glass items and practicing responsible airsoft play is essential.

Cracks and Shattering

In some cases, airsoft pellets can cause cracks or even shattering of glass depending on factors like the pellet’s velocity, glass quality, and angle of impact. For example, high-powered airsoft guns can shoot pellets at speeds above 500 feet per second (FPS), increasing the likelihood of cracks forming on the glass surface.

Also, certain types of glass, such as tempered glass, can shatter suddenly when impacted by a pellet, potentially causing a hazardous situation. So, it’s crucial to evaluate the potential risks during airsoft activities and take necessary precautions.

Airsoft pellets can cause damage to glass surfaces, whether it’s minor scratches and chips or cracks and shattering. Practicing safe and responsible airsoft activities can help minimize these risks and ensure an enjoyable experience for all players involved.

Safety Measures and Precautions

In this section, you’ll learn about the critical safety measures and precautions to take when playing airsoft to minimize the risk of injury and property damage, particularly to glasses and windows.

Wearing Protective Gear

Your safety should come first. It’s essential to wear proper protective gear, such as goggles or full-face masks, to safeguard your eyes and face from any potential harm.

Aside from protecting your eyes, other recommended gear includes gloves, long-sleeved shirts, and pants. These will minimize the risk of airsoft pellets and shattered glass injury.

Securing Windows and Glass Objects

When playing airsoft, it’s essential to consider the environment and vulnerable objects, like windows and glass decorations, which could break if struck with airsoft pellets.

Cover these surfaces with a protective film or a sturdy material like plywood, or simply avoid playing near them altogether.

These precautions and investing in proper equipment are vital to reduce risks and ensure a safe and enjoyable experience.

Legal Considerations

When it comes to airsoft gun usage and its potential to damage property, there are several legal aspects you need to consider. This section will discuss property damage laws and airsoft gun regulations.

Property Damage Laws

Property damage laws differ depending on local jurisdiction. However, in most cases, if your airsoft pellets were to break glass or damage any property, you may be held liable. Before engaging in activities, you must familiarize yourself with local laws on property damage involving airsoft guns.

Responsibility for damages may extend to civil and criminal liabilities, depending on the circumstances. Always use airsoft guns in designated areas or private property with the owner’s permission to minimize risks.

Airsoft Gun Regulations

Airsoft gun regulations vary by country and region, frequently impacting the power and design of airsoft guns permitted. These regulations are in place to protect public safety and reduce the chance of unintentional property damage.

To stay compliant with the law, ensure your airsoft gun meets the power and design requirements and follow the guidelines for safe and responsible use guidelines. This is particularly important if you’re employing a higher-powered airsoft sniper rifle or other long-range guns, as they can cause damage.


By staying informed about legal considerations and following the necessary regulations, you can ensure a safe and enjoyable airsoft experience for yourself and others.


Airsoft pellets can cause damage to glass, mainly if they are made from heavier materials and fired at a higher velocity. Thin, untempered glass is more susceptible to breakage than thicker, tempered glass. It is crucial to consider the type of glass and your airsoft gun’s capabilities when engaging in airsoft activities near glass surfaces.

For your safety and others, adhere to proper airsoft safety guidelines, including wearing eye protection and being mindful of your surroundings. Choose a suitable location for airsoft battles that minimizes the risk of accidental damage or injury.

If you are concerned about potential damage to glass surfaces, consider using lower-velocity airsoft guns, lighter pellets, or biodegradable BBs to help minimize the chances of breaking glass in your play area. Ultimately, being responsible and informed while engaging in airsoft activities is the key to a successful and enjoyable experience.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q. Can airsoft pellets break glass?

Depending on the type of glass and the pellet’s velocity, airsoft pellets may crack or shatter glass. Tempered glass is less likely to break, while thinner, non-tempered glass is more susceptible to damage.

Q. What factors affect the likelihood of breaking glass?

When shooting at glass targets in airsoft, several factors can affect the likelihood of breaking the glass and causing damage. One of the main factors is the caliber of the BB, as larger calibers tend to have more energy and are more likely to cause damage upon impact.

Additionally, the velocity of the projectile can also be a determining factor, as higher-velocity BBs are more capable of breaking glass.

The type of glass used is also essential, as tempered glass is more resistant to breaking than non-tempered glass. Finally, the angle of impact is another critical factor, as pellets hitting the glass at a steeper angle are less likely to cause damage.

Q. How can I reduce the risk of breaking glass while playing airsoft?

Consider using plastic or foam barriers to protect windows and other glass surfaces. Follow airsoft safety guidelines and be aware of your surroundings while playing.

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