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Double glazing windows are fitted to houses to reduce heat loss and cut down on noise. By trapping a layer of air between two panes of glass you create an effective insulator that stops heat escaping and deadens sound. And because the inner pane of glass stays warmer than the outside pane; double glazing windows also cut down on condensation.
While most new builds come complete with double glazing as standard, anyone wanting to replace tired windows has got their work cut out. Today’s marketplace is awash with different designs, materials, fixtures and fittings; and for the layman (who doesn’t know one end of a five-point-locking-system from another) it can be difficult knowing where to turn. Then there’s the formidable reputation of the double glazing salesmen themselves, who conjure up images of toothsome sharks circling a man overboard.
To help you navigate through the double glazing maze we’ve addressed everything from how to get a quote to choosing the right supplier. If you’re feeling bold we’ve included tips on DIY double glazing and even had a look at what’s happening at the cutting edge of glazing technology. If you’re thinking about getting double-glazing windows installed you’ll have to choose between factory-sealed units or secondary glazing and we’ve outlined the pros and cons associated with each.
Finally we’ve had a look at the all important dual aspects of safety and security. Double glazing proves a challenge to anyone who wants to break into your home; however, it isn’t much use if you’ve cut corners by scrimping on the locks (similarly you’ll want to be confident that you can make a quick exit in the case of an emergency). Few things rank higher on a family’s agenda than safety and it’s important to know that any work being carried out on your property is to the highest standard. Ask if your chosen double glazing installer is a member of the Glass and Glazing Federation, check for FENSA accreditation and make sure that all products carry the safety standard kite mark. In fact, in the world of double glazing you’ll soon find that a little homework goes a long, long way.