Double Glazed Windows Guide - Cost, Benefits & Installation
In the realm of home improvement, few upgrades offer the same blend of aesthetics, energy efficiency, and noise reduction as double-glazed windows.
If you're contemplating enhancing your living space, this guide is your key to understanding the ins and outs of double-glazed windows.
Understanding Double-Glazed Windows
Double-glazed windows consist of two layers of glass separated by a layer of inert gas, typically argon. This design not only enhances insulation but also acts as an effective sound barrier, making your home a quieter and more comfortable place to live.
Energy Efficiency of Double Glazing
One of the primary advantages of double-glazed windows is their exceptional energy efficiency.
The insulating layer of gas and the sealed unit significantly reduce heat transfer, keeping your home warmer in winter and cooler in summer. This translates to lower energy bills and a reduced carbon footprint.
If you are building a custom home or are extending your existing home you decide to add significant amounts of glass, the new Building Regulations will require you to carry out an energy efficiency survey - it will therefore be a minimum requirement to include good quality double-glazed windows to your plan.
Choosing the Right Double-Glazed Windows
Not every window is the same in yours or any home, and the same can be said for double-glazed windows. To help you choose the right double-glazed windows for your property, here are some factors to think about.
When it comes to double-glazed windows, the choice of materials is important. Opt for frames made from durable materials like uPVC, aluminium, or timber.
Each material has its unique benefits, so selecting the right one depends on your preferences, budget, and the overall aesthetic you desire for your home. For example, if the architecture of your home requires it or your building is listed, you may need to use specific materials for the frame.
uPVC will be the cheapest option for your windows but may not be the most durable of materials, especially compared to aluminium. Aluminium will provide high levels of strength, durability, and energy efficiency, all whilst being cheaper than timber.
Timber is one of the most expensive materials for windows, and despite looking very stylish, they can scratch easily and warp in moist temperatures, meaning you may have to fix or replace them regularly.
To gauge the energy efficiency of double-glazed windows, pay attention to their U-values. The lower the U-value, the better the insulation.
This metric reflects the window's ability to retain heat, making it an essential factor in selecting windows that contribute to your home's overall energy efficiency.
Double Glazing Cost
Something else you need to consider before getting double-glazed windows in your house is the total cost of it. The average cost of double-glazing a 3-bedroom home in the UK is between £4,000 and £7,000, but this can change depending on numerous factors.
This shows that double-glazing your windows is not an easy or cheap project to start, but it can very much be a cost-effective choice in the long run due to the energy efficiency benefits it provides to any property.
To learn even more about double glazing cost, this price guide can give you a better idea of what you might be paying, specifically for your household.
Factors Influencing Double Glazing Cost
Several elements affect the cost of double-glazing, which is why there can be such a big difference in the cost. Here, we will go through a few things that might make things a bit cheaper or more expensive.
Window Size and Type
The size and type of windows significantly impact the overall cost of double glazing. Larger windows and unique designs may incur higher expenses due to increased materials and labour requirements.
Not all double glazing is created equal. The quality of the glass used, including factors such as thickness and coating, can affect both the performance and cost of the windows.
Choosing the right frame material is a critical decision. Options range from uPVC and aluminium to timber. Each material comes with its own set of advantages and costs, influencing the overall budget for your double-glazing project.
Number of Windows
The number of windows you intend to replace or install directly correlates with the final cost. Assessing your home's needs and budget constraints can help strike a balance between functionality and affordability.
Are double-glazed windows complex to install?
The complexity of the installation process is another factor to consider. If your home requires extensive modifications to accommodate double glazing, the associated costs may rise.
Also, with most home improvement projects, the longer the installation takes or the more material that is required, the higher the price might be.
Double Glazing Installation - Factors to Consider
Another important part of double-glazing your windows is fitting them, which can be a long and complex task, depending on the amount of work required. Make sure that you are aware of the installation process and how long it will take to complete.
Should double-glazed windows be installed by a professional?
While the quality of the windows themselves is significant, the installation process is equally significant. Improper installation can compromise the effectiveness of even the highest-quality double-glazed windows.
If your windows come with a warranty you should check its terms carefully. The warranty might be invalidated if installation is not undertaken by a professional.
Ensure you engage a reputable and experienced installer to guarantee a snug fit and optimal performance. Although getting a fitter to install your double-glazing windows will add to the overall cost, it is highly recommended to ensure the job is done correctly.
Sealing Double-Glazed Windows
Proper sealing is essential for the long-term durability of double-glazed windows. Insist on high-quality sealing materials to prevent air and moisture infiltration.
This not only enhances the window's performance but also extends its lifespan, ensuring you enjoy the benefits for years to come.
Maintenance Tips for Longevity
The advantages of having double-glazed windows fitted in your home are excellent, and you will want to reap the benefits of them for as long as you possibly can.
Well, a brilliant method of doing this is regular maintenance of your windows, meaning they are constantly in the best possible condition they can be, allowing you to have high performances of energy efficiency, noise reduction, and security for years to come.
Regular Cleaning Routine
Maintaining the pristine condition of your double-glazed windows is simple but essential. Regularly clean the glass and frames to prevent the buildup of dirt and grime. This not only keeps your windows looking their best but also ensures optimal performance.
Inspecting Seals and Gaskets
Periodically inspect the seals and gaskets to identify any signs of wear or damage. Prompt replacement of damaged seals is vital to preserving the window's efficiency and preventing issues like condensation between the glass layers.
Installing Double-Glazing in Your Home
Double-glazed windows stand as a testament to the marriage of functionality and aesthetics in the realm of home improvement. From enhanced energy efficiency to a quieter living space, the benefits are numerous.
By understanding the nuances of materials, installation, and maintenance, you ensure your double-glazed windows continue to elevate your home for years to come.
Jenny Kakoudakis likes to blog about interiors. She launched the award-winning Seasons in Colour in 2014. When she is not chasing criminals out of the financial system (her day job), she gets creative by redecorating her own home.
Download her free bathroom renovation guide here.