How many homeowners are aware of the fact that, if their property has older windows with wooden frames, they are likely to be losing somewhere in the region of 20% of the property’s heat? This heat loss is increased further if the property also has wooden doors and frames. At a time when fuel costs are constantly escalating, these facts clearly suggest that every homeowner in this situation should investigate the possibility of reducing their energy inefficiencies and one way of achieving significant improvements in this respect is through the installation of double (or triple) glazed uPVC window and door units.
The Benefits of Installing uPVC Double Glazing Units
The first and foremost advantage of installing uPVC double glazing is that it will result in an immediate reduction in the heat that is lost from the property. Secondly, there will be a reduction in the drafts that enter the house. These two factors combine to bring about a dramatic decrease in the household energy bills.
How Does uPVC Double Glazing Work?
The manner in which energy savings are made is by virtue of the double glazing units having two separate panes of glass, rather than the single pane that is present in a traditional, older window. The two panes are spaced a few millimetres apart from one another. Either a vacuum or a gas, such as argon, occupies the space between the panes, enhancing their insulating efficiency. As we have already mentioned, this type of sealed unit also protects against noise. The insulating and noise reducing effects can be further enhanced by employing triple glazing or by increasing the amount of space between the panes.
How are uPVC Double Glazing Units Made?
Double glazed uPVC windows and doors are basically constructed by the addition of an uPVC (unplasticized Poly Vinyl Chloride) cover to a rigid frame, which is frequently made from steel. The uPVC coating is carefully fitted and sealed around the window and door frame to ensure that it is waterproof, whilst the rigid frame ensures that the units are secure. The uPVC coating is frequently white in colour although it is also possible to find windows and doors that come in alternative colours or in a grain effect. One of the major benefits associated with uPVC is that it does not require painting and, therefore, it is relatively easy to maintain.
Can uPVC Double Glazing Units Break Down?
Although uPVC windows and doors are very durable, it is possible that they will suffer a breakdown. This will be made evident by the appearance of moisture or droplets of water in the cavity between the panes. In this eventuality the units will need to be repaired or replaced. Because of the cost of installing uPVC double glazing and the risk, however slight, that it might break down it is always prudent to use a supplier who provides a long-term guarantee. In fact, most major double glazing companies are happy to guarantee their products for up to ten years.
Can any House Benefit from uPVC Double Glazing?
There are no particular limitations on the type of property that is suitable for the installation of uPVC windows and doors. However, certain properties which are located in conservation areas or are subject to listed building status, are likely to require special permission. In certain cases, the local planning authority may be reluctant to agree to the installation of uPVC double glazing at all and an alternative energy saving strategy, such as secondary double glazing, may be the only option available.
To augment the energy efficiency of uPVC units it is prudent to hang heavy duty or lined curtains in each room. These will serve as an extra measure to help to keep the heat in and the drafts out.