PVC Frames Guide
Replacing Wooden Framed Windows with PVC Frames. Replacing windows in your home can have many benefits, aesthetics aside, new windows in your home can help prevent heat loss, thus leading to small heating bills and with the recent spate of energy price increases, the savings can be quite large over a period of time. Almost all new windows are fitted (or can be fitted) with better quality security devices; you will thus improve the security at your home. Most insurance companies, now demand a certain level of security at your property, whilst older style windows can be fitted quite easily with key operated locks, they are still not as secure as double glazed windows fitted with key operated locks.By fitting your home with modern UPVC windows, you should ensure your windows become pretty much maintenance free for many years.
Before going any further, its a good idea to have in mind exactly the type of windows you want, rather than letting someone sell you the windows they produce. Remember, new windows will change the appearance of your house so you should make sure they are in keeping with your property. Have a look at similar properties, see which type look the best, not just the type you think are the best, remember, one day you may want to sell the property.
Another factor in choosing windows is whether you will need planning permission or not, in almost all cases you do not, but if your property is a listed building or is in a conservation area, you will need to check on what you can and cannot do. Any type of window replacement that extends the property (such as fitting a bay window, will also need consideration of any local planning rules.
You can of course change your windows your self, there are plenty of factories now that will quote you a supply only price for windows, and you simply have to obtain your measurements as most units are made to order. However, you will have to have a certain level of competency to do this, you will have to make sure that your measurements are accurate and also be confident that you are able to install them in to your home. You may find that a local factory can supply and fit the windows for you and this may work out to be the easiest option in the long run.
One of the main problems with the purchase of new windows is that the industry has received a lot of bad press over the years, mainly caused by over zealous sales persons. The internet is littered with companies that seem to be offering anything from 20% to 60% discounts with other offers of free windows and doors. Most people do like to be pushed in to sales, so trying seeing if there are any online reviews of a company before you phone them up. Here are our tips for choosing a window installer.
1. Dont be tempted to accept the first offer you receive even if it sounds good, beware of time sensitive offers, these may have been designed to get you to part with your money quicker. Try to obtain at least three estimates and sometimes asking your neighbors of whom they used and why can be most useful. Remember, people that are happy with service will recommend a company to you. You should also remember that the vast majority of companies are honest, and if their price is higher, there many be other factors, such as quality that is increasing the price. Dont worry about asking for a cheaper price, the companies you contact will be used to that.
2. Ask the company for references of people you can chat to about the quality of the work. Also ask if there are any local examples of their work you can go along and view. If you do speak to previous customers, dont just focus on the price, ask questions about the time it took to complete the work, were the workmen tidy etc, did they turn up when they said they would.
3. If possible, try to visit the company show room, try to find out as much as possible about the firm, in particular how long they have been trading and, ask about their guarantees, are they insurance backed? Ask if they are FENSA registered. If they are FENSA registered, you will know they have reached a certain standard. You can visit the FENSA website for a list of companies near you that are registered. Enquire as to the method of payment, how much they will require upfront before work commences. It is usual for most companies to require a deposit, 10% is about the norm. Try to avoid paying a higher deposit than this but you may find that if your work is of a specialist nature, you may be required to pay more. Also enquire about delivery times, how long will it take to deliver and install your new windows?
4. Ask detailed questions about the type of window being suggested, UPVC windows may look similar but they are not and quality can vary considerably, always enquire about the type of locks and security features being fitted. Most modern double-glazed replacement windows feature multi-point type locking, which will also ‘lock’ partially open in a’night-vent” position. It may also be possible to upgrade to shoot bolt locking or SAC bolt locks for additional security. This is important as in some areas, if you increase your home contents sum insured, you may need additional security.
5. In very few cases, will the cheapest windows be the best option for your home. You will have to live with these windows for quite some time so think carefully before accepting the’cheapest” price. When comparing’like with like also take into consideration, the type of company you are dealing with and their reputation and the quality of previous work. Paying a little more may save a lot of anguish later on; a 10 year guarantee may be worthless in a few years from certain types of company.