If you grew up in the UK, you were probably told by your parents that if you’re cold at home you should just wrap yourself up in a jumper and scarf until the heating comes back on so as to save money on your energy bill. This shouldn’t be the case, in reality if you put the heating on in your home in the morning, your house should remain warm for a long period of time meaning that you don’t have to blast your heating all day. However this doesn’t for many homes and the reason for that is your home is not efficient at both keeping your heat inside and the cold outside. In fact studies (energy.gov) have found that inefficient window systems account for 25-30% of energy usage in the average residential homes meaning that you are spending approximately 30% more on your energy bills each month than you should be! So, if you are noticing that your windows, skylights, sliding doors etc. are allowing drafts into your home, there are a number of things you should be wary of:
1) If your windows are showing visible signs of rot, warping or are soft to the touch and can possibly break off in your fingers, this will be signs of water damage. Wooden window frames are particularly difficult to manage as if they aren’t sealed properly, water can easily infiltrate them and this leads to rot. This is very difficult to halt and manage once it sets in. This rot, if not properly dealt with, can lead to extensive damage. If you have installed a poor quality UPVC window it can quickly discolour and begin to warp as it expands and contracts in the heat. This can lead cracks, chips and holes, breaking its seal so that it becomes drafty and leaks, these are major signs that your windows need replacing.
2) It is possible that your window systems are failing to keep in your heat because the insulation that is in your windows is either ineffective or has failed. In the case of single glazed windows, unless you live in an extremely hot climate, they have very little benefit. The single pane of glass provides little relief from outside noise, is far less secure from intruders and provides almost no insulation from the cold. Double glazed windows use two panes of glass with a layer of Argon gas in-between them to provide insulation from noise and cold, however this can often fail. If you ever see frost or condensation between the two panes of glass, this means that the seal has failed, releasing the Argon gas and making it not much more effective than single glazed windows.
3) Like any aspect of a home improvement project, if a product you purchase is not installed correctly, it will not work efficiently! This is why it is essential to ensure that whoever it is that you choose to install and window or glazed system into your home is fully qualified to perform the task. This can be quite difficult to verify as there are many “Cowboy Builders” out there who can throw some technical jargon at you and convince you that they are qualified if you are not in the know! We would always recommend, when choosing an installer, to trust in organisations such as CERTASS. Their purpose is to certify businesses who have proved they are proficient in installing and repairing windows, conservatories, skylights and other glazed systems. Those businesses that have attained certification, their employees will carry MTC skills cards to prove it, just as all Prior Aluminium installers do!
At Prior Aluminium we pride ourselves on providing top quality products at a reasonable price so we can ensure you the quality, comfort, security and warmth you deserve. Our aluminium windows and doors are designed and manufactured using industry REAL and Atlas profiles. The quality of our products is matched by the skill of our fitters. All installations are carried out by MTC cardholders, backed by CERTASS, the window industry certification body. All of our hardware, including locks, handles and hinges, have been tested to meet European standards for security and strength. We hold BFRC energy rating licences for our windows which are manufactured at our Long Marston factory. With this knowledge you can relax at home in comfort knowing that you are saving on your energy bills and doing your bit to reduce carbon emissions.