It’s been a long time since I had to physically replace a house full of windows but my experience recently on a domestic contract provided some interesting facts.
This project included energy efficient window replacement, and although relatively small in size, was challenging. The overall process, from the conception to carry out the works, to practical completion took 5 months, the first 3.5 of these focused on the sale.
The advice of a suitably qualified person is always helpful. In this instance, our early involvement enabled us to value engineer and work to a budget. Examples of this are demonstrated by retaining existing timber frames to the rear of the house and upgrading the glazing to soft coated low e double glazing. The money saved was invested in the high performance aluminium replacement windows used though-out the house.
Why Did We Not Use uPVC?
There is no doubt that uPVC is cheaper by far and is equal in thermal performance but durability and strength, despite what the manufacturer says, is always an issue. See example photograghs.
We expect our products to perform and outlive their design life and this is the reason why we are strong advocates of the use of aluminium for domestic projects. Degradation of external finishes in uPVC is more common than people think. In this instance the house is located close to the sea so a marine guarantee was necessary.
Meeting Functional and Aesthetic Requirements
Designing the replacement window requires an understanding of scale and proportion. In this instance we were very conscious of practical issues related to fire escape, cleaning and maintenance. Likewise, we did not want the final project to look out of context within itself. The resulting fenestration meets all the functional requirements whilst addressing aesthetical ones too.
It is only nice to retain some original feature. In this instance, the front door and side lights were retained but the patterned glass was upgraded to double glazing. We worked within the existing framing members and provided stepped fritted units with a more contemporary patterned glass.
The glazing configuration reflects the houses physical orientation. Triple glazing to the front north facing elevation retains the heat achieving a u-value of .5wm2/k. To the rear of the house, south facing double glazing achieves a u value of 1.6 wm2k but allows solar gain making most of passive measures etc.
Finally, upgrading external walls is a very topical and current issue as owners attempt to reduce energy costs and improve thermal comfort. This can be done in a variety of ways such as external insulated rendering, internal drying or cavity wall infill so make sure that your replacement window takes account of any such measures. Each has its own advantages and disadvantages, costs reflect the actual building so the engagement of a professional like ourselves can be beneficial in the overall project development.
Replacement Windows: How can we help?
A window replacement project can reduce operating and maintenance costs, improve the indoor climate and comfort for the house occupants, and enhance the overall appearance of the dwelling.
If you are considering the upgrading your windows or improving your homes energy efficiency, give us a call to discuss the best solution for your project. Contact us directly at +353 (1) 464 2970 / +353 86 270 7415
Or email us at email@example.com