Installing new double glazed windows can transform your home, improving energy efficiency, noise reduction, security, and even property value. In this guide, we will explore everything you need to know about double glazing – from the costs and options available to finding reputable double glazing installers, suppliers and getting quotes in Cornwall.
Table of Contents
What is Double Glazing?
Double glazing, or double-paned windows, refers to windows made up of two glass window panes separated by a vacuum or gas-filled space to reduce heat transfer. This creates an insulating barrier between the inside and outside of your home.
Some key benefits of double glazed windows include:
- Improved Thermal Efficiency – Less heat escapes in winter and less heat enters in summer. This reduces energy costs on heating and cooling.
- Noise Reduction – The air gap between panes acts as an acoustic barrier, reducing outside noise by up to 70%. This helps create a quieter and more peaceful home environment.
- Enhanced Security – With two panes of glass, double glazing is harder to break than a single pane and provides better resistance against intruders.
- Added Property Value – Double glazing can increase your home’s value. Home buyers view it as an asset due to the cost savings and lifestyle benefits it provides.
With double glazed windows offering such impressive improvements for your home, Cornwall homeowners looking to replace drafty old single-glazed windows can benefit tremendously from upgrading.
Types of Double Glazing
If you’ve decided to invest in new double glazed windows for your home, the next step is choosing which type best suits your needs and budget. There are a few main options:
Double Glazed Windows with Argon Gas
This is one of the most common and affordable types of double glazing. It uses argon gas, an inert gas, in the space between the glass panes to provide better insulation than simple air-filled units. Argon gas prevents heat transfer more effectively due to its molecular structure and density.
Double Glazed Windows with Krypton Gas
For the best thermal performance, some units replace argon with krypton gas. Krypton gas molecules are larger and less mobile, slowing down conductive heat transfer even more. However, krypton gas is also more expensive.
Triple Glazed Windows
Some units come with three panes of glass rather than two, providing further enhanced insulation. The additional pane helps prevent conductive and radiant heat loss. Triple glazing can be combined with argon or krypton gas to maximize efficiency. However, more glass panes mean higher cost.
For added security and safety against intruders or severe weather, laminated double glazed glass uses a layer between glass to hold broken glass shards together. It is thicker, stronger, and avoids the risk of shattered glass panes but also comes at a premium price.
The option you choose will depend on your budget, energy priorities, security concerns, noise reduction goals, and other needs. When comparing double glazing installers and suppliers in Cornwall, be sure to get quotes specifying the exact type being offered.
Benefits of New Double Glazed Windows
Let’s explore why you should consider installing new double glazed windows rather than just adding a second pane to existing single glazed windows:
- Maximized Energy Savings
New purpose-designed double glazing maximizes insulation using modern framing materials and precision engineering between glass panes. Simply adding a second pane to an existing window with gaps, leaks and outdated framing won’t improve efficiency anywhere near as much.
- Enhanced Noise Reduction
Along with using optimal glass thickness for sound insulation, new noise-reducing double glazed windows incorporate labyrinth seals, dense weather stripping, tight closing mechanisms, and sound-absorbent frames. Achieving similar noise reduction by just adding a second glass pane isn’t feasible.
- Added Security Features
New double glazed windows offer multi-point locks, laminated and tempered glass, anti-bump cylinders, window restrictors, and other security features you won’t get from a basic DIY secondary pane installation. These features protect against both intruders and damage during storms.
- Improved Appearance
Nothing beats that crisp, clean look of brand new windows. New double glazed windows come in a wide range of frame materials and colors to match your home’s style. Breathing new life into your home’s aesthetics beats slapping an ugly secondary pane onto cloudy old single glazed windows.
While adding a second pane of glass can provide some improvements, investing in new double glazed replacement windows maximizes benefits across the board – from thermal efficiency to noise reduction, security, lifespan and visual appeal.
How Much Does Double Glazing Cost?
Exactly how much you’ll pay to install double glazing depends on several variable factors. These include:
–Number of Windows – Costs scale up with more windows needing installation.
–Size of Windows – Larger windows logically cost more than smaller ones.
- Type of Glass – Specialty options like laminated, acoustic, or patterned glass costs extra.
- Type of Gas – Krypton gas filled windows cost more than argon gas or air filled units.
- Window Frames – uPVC is cheapest. With wood or aluminum costing increasingly more.
- Additional Features – Trickle vents, handles, hinges and other options add cost.
To give you a rough idea, here is an overview of double glazing installation costs per window based on a standard 750 x 1250mm sized double hung sash window:
|Basic uPVC Double Glazing
|Premium uPVC Double Glazing
|Basic Aluminum Double Glazing
|Premium Aluminum Double Glazing
|Basic Wooden Double Glazing
|Premium Wooden Double Glazing
Keep in mind the per window expense stacks up quickly. It’s not uncommon for an entire house double glazing installation to cost anywhere from £3,000 to £10,000+ depending on the home’s window sizes, types and number that need replacing.
Getting quotes for your specific home is highly recommended. Leading double glazing installers and suppliers in Cornwall will provide free, no-obligation estimates outlining precisely what everything will cost for your property’s double glazing project.
Finding the Best Double Glazing Installers in Cornwall
Choosing the right double glazing installer is crucial – an inexperienced fitter can compromise your windows’ thermal and noise insulation, security, operation, lifespan and appearance.
Warning signs of untrustworthy double glazing installers include:
- No Fixed Address – Avoid mobile “installer vans” without permanent offices or workshops.
- Pressure Sales – Beware high pressure sales tactics urging you to “sign today or miss out on discounts.”
- Too Cheap – Suspiciously cheap quotes likely indicate low quality products and workmanship.
- No Written Quotes – Reputable firms always provide itemized written quotes detailing products and services.
- No References – Ask for client references and recently completed project addresses you can view firsthand.
For best results, choose an established local Cornwall double glazing company with:
- Strong Customer Reviews – Multiple online customer reviews help verify quality reputation.
- Permanent Office & Workshop – Longstanding companies invest in proper local premises and facilities.
- Certified Installers – Technicians should hold industry training credentials.
- Accreditations – Look for memberships in trusted trade bodies and schemes like Fensa.
- Insurance – Worker’s liability and public liability coverage protects you from claims.
- Warranties – Long guarantees on glazing, parts and labor indicate durable products and work.
By thoroughly researching options, getting multiple quotes, checking credentials and asking the right questions, you can find trustworthy local double glazing installers to handle your project affordably and efficiently.
How to Get the Best Double Glazing Quotes
Here is a 10 step overview of getting optimal double glazing quotes for your project:
- Determine Needs
Decide which rooms need double glazing and your goal, e.g. maximize energy savings or noise reduction? Get accurate window measurements.
- Research Reputable Local Firms
Search online reviews and directories to create a list of well-reviewed nearby double glazing installers.
- Check Credentials
Verify firms have certifications from bodies like Fensa along with liability insurance, permanent facilities, trained installers, etc.
- Request Quotes
Contact your shortlist of firms to have them visit your property for precise quotes. Most offer free, no-obligation estimates.
- Specify Needs
Provide companies your window measurements, prioritize thermal efficiency vs noise reduction, security, budget limitations and any special needs.
- Get Written Fixed Price Quotes
Ask for clearly written, fixed price quotes outlining parts, materials, itemized costs including labor etc.
- Compare Quotes Apples to Apples
Scrutinize quotes side-by-side to accurately compare bids using the same quality components.
- Clarify Ambiguities
Ask questions about any vague areas or options quotes mention but don’t fully explain. Leave no stone unturned!
- Verify Expected Timeframes
Ask firms to specify projected lead times between deposit, production and final installation.
- Trust Your Instincts
Consider installer professionalism, staff conduct and responsiveness alongside the hard metrics. Your comfort level is key when inviting a firm into your home for weeks.
Avoid deciding solely on price – weighing multiple factors leads to better quotes and choosing the right double glazing installer for your project’s success.
Double Glazing Grants and Discounts
If upfront double glazing costs are discouraging, fortunately there are ways to get discounted windows or even free installations in some cases.
Home Upgrade Grants
The UK government’s recently introduced Green Homes Grant provides qualifying homeowners vouchers covering up to two-thirds of double glazing upgrade costs. Additional schemes like Help to Heat offer means-tested support for new energy efficient windows.
Many local Cornwall councils offer home efficiency grants, discounted materials and free installs of double glazing depending on eligibility criteria based on household income, health conditions and vulnerability factors. Contact your local council to learn more.
Check if you qualify for assistance installing double glazing at no upfront cost through charities like the Energy Saving Trust or Warm & Well. If over 60, Age UK provides the Winter Wrapped Up program helping seniors stay warm through free insulation and glazing.
Suppliers Bulk Deals
While the cost savings vary widely depending on personal circumstances, exploring double glazing financial support options is always worth the effort and can equate to thousands in savings.
Double Glazing Scams: What to Watch Out For
Amidst surging demand, the UK double glazing industry unfortunately sees its share of exploitative scammers ready to take advantage of property owners through shoddy craftsmanship, inferior parts and deceptive sales ploys designed to maximize profit over customer satisfaction.
Warning signs of potential double glazing scammers include:
- High Pressure Sales – Overly aggressive salespeople urging immediate “today-only” deposits or using other manipulation techniques.
- Too Good To Be True Pricing – Extremely cheap quotes likely indicate low grade, inadequate materials and dodgy workmanship.
- Insistence on Cash Only – Unscrupulous operators often demand cash payments to avoid taxes and limit fraud audit trails.
- No Physical Business Premises – Firms operating purely through mobiles or “virtual offices” may disappear once paid.
- No Written Contracts – Reputable businesses always provide clearly written agreements outlining what is being provided for what fixed price.
- No Industry Credentials – Ask to see proof of certifications, insurance policies, Fensa registration and other legitimacy indicators.
- No References – Quality glazing installers readily provide customer references and examples of past work.
By carefully vetting double glazing installers, checking credentials, getting binding contracts and invoices, and trusting your gut reactions, you can avoid becoming the victim of an expensive glazing con job or subpar work. As the old adage goes – if an offer seems too good to be true, it likely is.
Replacing outdated, inefficient single glazed windows with modern double glazing provides transformational enhancements spanning thermal insulation, noise reduction, security resilience, cost savings and added property value. To fully capitalize on these upside benefits requires choosing the optimal double glazing solutions for your home, budget and priorities.
By clearly determining your needs, thoroughly researching reputable local double glazing installers and suppliers in Cornwall, scrutinizing quotes apples-to-apples, leveraging available financial support and avoiding scams, you’re guaranteed to maximize returns improving your home with new double glazed windows.
We hope this guide provides a helpful overview of best practices securing ideal double glazing upgrades tailored for your unique requirements. Please reach out with any other questions!