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Double Glazing Replacement Windows – Finding an approved supplier in the Midlands

Getting your double glazing installation sorted

Having been finally pushed into agreeing to get the house double glazed I have no intention of either doing in myself or trying to cut corners to “save a few quid”.
I have seen the local tales of woe and intend to do the job properly and by using approved replacement window suppliers and installers so that it will be worthwhile and not a nightmare story to tell down the pub.
I have recently read that in 2009 over 22,000 home improvement cases were reported to the Office of Fair Trading, which tells me to take care if I don’t wish to be number 22,001.

So why would I want an “approved supplier” in the Midlands

Before I even think about installation I need to select the product and make sure that it meets with all the regulations and that it has a decent energy rating (specifies which energy rating level it has – a bit like the cooker and washing machine have now) – In the case of replacement windows these are set by the British Fenestration Rating Council. 

Once I am satisfied that the product is up to scratch (lets face it – most of us wouldn’t want to spend a lot on a car only top find it will never pass an MOT – EVER!) we now want to get approved installers. This is really important - make sure that they are both FENSA approved and that they have also received direct product training. As well as the FENSA approval a double bonus if they are also members of the Glass and Glazing Federation as membership here may also offer deposit indemnity.

Did you know it has to comply with Building regulations?

I for one had no idea that my double glazing installation has to comply with building regulations. If you use a FENSA approved installer you are covered but if you don’t, you must get the installation inspected by your local authority. This is your responsibility and what are you going to do if it fails?

Once you have sorted your approved product and simply checked that your installers are FENSA members (Still not certain? Then go and look them up on the FENSA site) you are now in a healthier position to consider the benefits of your proposed double glazing installation.

What are the likely advantages with double glazing windows?

  • Reduced energy bills.
  • Lower carbon footprint.
  • More comfortable home.
  • Peace and quite.
  • Low maintenance no need to constantly re-paint.
  • Continues to look good for the foreseeable future.
  • Reduced condensation.
  • Added value to the home
  • Easier to sell the home.

What are the main differences between the various replacement windows (double glazing)?

Most of the larger companies will supply similar types of window (Tilt and turn, sash windows etc) so the most significant styling differences is found in the frames used, of which the most commonly found our shown below.

  1. Aluminium
  2. Hard wood or soft wood
  3. uPVC / PVCu / UPVC

Aluminium replacement window frames

Not seen that often these days except on commercial premises. When double glazing was first popular in the UK aluminium was also popular, but as UPVC has been introduced the aluminium frames have become probably the least popular on domestic property which seems to have resulted in them becoming a more expensive option. They are strong and have excellent security attributes but generally are not acceptable in conservation areas or on some listed properties and had a tendency towards condensation problems at one time.

Timber window frames

Probably the choice of the traditionalist and certainly was until recently, the natural choice for period style properties. Some areas of conservation will insist upon timber frames to be in keeping with other properties but since the introduction UPVC styles offering Woodgrain finishes it is not always an insistence to have timber frames now.

Undoubtedly timber frames look impressive and are ideal where bespoke designs are required but they can be expensive and will certainly require maintenance and will be prone to adverse weather conditions such as prolong sun.

uPVC / PVCu / UPVC window frames

Today’s most popular choice and usually the least expensive option. The plastics are one of the best insulates making them ideal for the purpose.

This is an extremely durable and recyclable product, which during its lengthy lifetime; will not require maintenance other than a wipe over occasionally with a damp cloth. UPVC never rots, flakes, rusts or fades and I understand that discolouration also rarely occurs.

It is usually seen in white, but as both its popularity has increased and technological advances have occurred, the choices has also increased as well as options such as Woodgrain finishes in Mahogany and Oak.  

u-PVC frames, PVC-u frames or UPVC frames are very secure as they are difficult to break or damage.

Main types of double glazing replacement windows:

Casement windows

Many of us have lived in houses with casement windows - these open away from the property and can be either left or right-hand opening. They are an open design letting in lots of light and in areas where there will be lots of glass are designed to take coloured or leaded top lights in order to add design interest. They can often be single or double casements and where they are double will most often use the same window frame. Some types of bay windows are made up of a series of casement windows.  

Sash windows

Sash windows or sliding sash windows have been around for many years, most often seen in period homes, such as Victorian or Georgian style houses.

These open upwards and downwards with one window operating in front of the other.

The modern double glazed sash windows do not suffer from the original problems of sticking or rattling plus the traditional requirements of weights and cords have gone.

Bay / Bow windows

An excellent design feature which can give a room the feel of greater space and light and is quite a design feature to create a feeling of elegance and grace.

Tilt and turn windows

These are a fairly modern invention, are very popular in double glazing replacement window installations. They are a great benefit where it is not safe to open the windows outwardly such as perhaps a ground floor opening onto a pavement.

They often have a dual function handle which allows the “tilt” for secure ventilation, the “turn” for cleaning, and excellent safety features especially for fire egress.

Search for an approved double glazing supplier in the Midlands – We cover all the following areas:

Aldridge, Amblecote, Aston, Berkswell, Bilston, Birmingham, Blackheath, Bloxwich, Brierly Hill, Cotteridge, Coventry, Dudley, Earlswood, Edgbaston, Halesowen, Heath Town, Kingswinford, Lye, Oldbury, Rowley Regis, Smethwick, Solihull, Stourbridge,
Sutton Coldfield, Tipton, Walsall, Warley, Wednesbury, Wednesfield, West Bromwich, Willenhall, Wolverhampton.

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Midlands – Did you know…?

Midlands is a rural county of rolling hills such as the Mendip Hills and Exmoor National Park, downland, and large flat expanses of land including the Midlands Levels.

The traditional northern border of the county is the River Avon, but the administrative boundary has crept southwards, with the creation and expansion of the City of Bristol.

Midlands contains England's oldest prison still in use, in the small town of Shepton Mallet, and the world's oldest known engineered roadway, the Sweet Track.


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