Are you tired of high energy bills, noise pollution, and constant drafts in your home? If so, it might be time to consider upgrading to double glazed windows. In this ultimate guide, we will cover everything you need to know about double glazed windows, from their benefits to installation and maintenance. So, let’s dive in and explore the world of double glazing to help you make an informed decision for your home.
What are Double Glazed Windows?
Double glazed windows, also known as insulated glass units (IGUs), consist of two panes of glass separated by a spacer and sealed together. This creates a gap between the panes, which is filled with an insulating gas, typically argon or krypton. The spacer is usually made of aluminum or another low-conductivity material to minimize heat transfer. The sealed unit is then fitted into a window frame made from uPVC, aluminium, or wood.
Benefits of Double Glazed Windows-
One of the main advantages of double glazed windows is their energy efficiency. The insulating gas between the glass panes reduces heat transfer, keeping your home warmer in the winter and cooler in the summer. According to the Energy Saving Trust, upgrading from single to double glazing can save you up to £145 per year on your energy bills.
Double glazing also provides excellent noise reduction, making your home a quieter and more peaceful place to live. The gap between the glass panes acts as a barrier that absorbs sound waves, reducing noise pollution from traffic, airplanes, and other sources.
Double glazed windows are more difficult to break than single-pane windows, providing extra security for your home. Many double glazed units also come with multi-point locking systems, further increasing their security.
Double glazed windows are generally low maintenance, particularly when compared to traditional single-pane windows. The sealed unit helps prevent condensation and mold growth, while the durable materials used in the frames require little upkeep.
Types of Double Glazed Windows-
uPVC (unplasticized polyvinyl chloride) is the most common material used for double glazed window frames. It is lightweight, durable, and low maintenance, making it an excellent choice for homeowners. uPVC windows come in a wide range of colors and finishes, including woodgrain effects that mimic the appearance of traditional wooden frames.
Aluminium double glazed windows are strong, lightweight, and corrosion resistant. They offer a sleek, modern aesthetic and can be powder-coated in a variety of colors to suit your home’s exterior. While aluminum windows are typically more expensive than uPVC, they can provide better thermal performance when paired with a thermal break.
Wooden double glazed windows offer a traditional, timeless look that can enhance the character of older properties. They provide excellent insulation and can be painted or stained to match your home’s exterior. However, wooden frames require more maintenance than uPVC or aluminum and may be susceptible to rot and insect damage if not properly cared for.
Double Glazing Glass Options-
When choosing double glazed windows, you can also select from various glass options, including:
– Low-E glass: This type of glass has a thin, transparent coating that reflects heat back into your home, further improving energy efficiency.
– Laminated glass: Composed of two or more layers of glass bonded together with a plastic interlayer, laminated glass provides enhanced security and noise reduction.
– Tinted glass: Tinted glass can reduce glare and prevent UV rays from fading your furnishings, while also providing a degree of privacy.
When selecting double glazed windows, consider factors such as:
– Your home’s architectural style
– The level of energy efficiency you require
– The type of frame material that best suits your needs and budget
– The glass options that will provide the desired level of security, noise reduction, and UV protection
– The window style, such as casement, sash, or tilt and turn
Double Glazing Installation Process-
The installation process for double glazed windows typically involves:
– Removing the existing windows and preparing the openings
– Installing the new window frames and sealing them in place
– Fitting the double glazed units into the frames and securing them with glazing beads or clips
– Sealing the perimeter of the windows to ensure an airtight fit
– Cleaning and finishing the installation
Maintenance and Troubleshooting-
Double glazed windows are generally low maintenance, but you should still:
– Clean the glass and frames regularly with a mild detergent and water
– Lubricate the hardware, such as hinges and locks, to ensure smooth operation
– Inspect the window seals for signs of wear or damage and replace them if necessary
Common issues with double glazed windows include:
– Condensation between the glass panes, indicating a broken seal
– Draughts, which may result from poor installation or a damaged seal
– Difficulty opening or closing the windows, potentially caused by warped frames or worn hardware
Cost of Double Glazed Windows-
The cost of double glazed windows depends on factors such as:
– The size and style of the windows
– The type of frame material and glass options chosen
– The complexity of the installation
On average, expect to pay between £400 and £600 per window, including installation. Keep in mind that while the initial investment may be significant, the energy savings and increased home value can offset the cost over time.
Double glazed windows offer numerous benefits, including improved energy efficiency, noise reduction, and enhanced security. By understanding the different types of double glazed windows, glass options, and installation processes, you can make an informed decision that will enhance your home’s comfort, aesthetics, and value. So, if you’re considering upgrading your windows, double glazing is an investment well worth considering.