Paarhammer Windows & Doors lists out five key considerations for
buyers when purchasing windows.
The five important components of a good window are glazing, frame
material, seals, locking points and installation. Each component has a key role
to play in the performance of the window, with all the elements coming together
for the making of a good window.
Double glazing is a common design feature in modern windows; however,
the width of the air gap between the two glass panes is an important factor.
Anything from 12mm to 20mm is ideal as it is the air or gas between the two
panes of glass that provides energy efficiency. Triple glazing should have two
12mm air gaps to increase the efficiency even more.
The ideal frame material should be a bad conductor so that the
temperature on one side does not come through to the other side. Timber is a
proven material as a bad conductor while aluminium is a good conductor that allows
the heat or cold straight inside, resulting in condensation problems. Also consider
the impact of the material on the environment in terms of its sustainability
and energy consumption during production.
A draft around the window sashes results in a high air exchange that
cannot be controlled, effectively negating the use of double glazing. The high
air exchange also means that the new air has to be heated or cooled each time
increasing energy consumption. Good seals are imperative to energy efficient
windows, and are best when used in addition to double rebates.
Multiple locking points all around the frame in conjunction with good
seals will completely eliminate drafts as well as noise.
Installation is an important element that impacts a window’s
performance. The gap between the window frame and the wall should be properly
sealed, preventing the creation of a weak link. Paarhammer uses expandable foam
featuring excellent insulation properties.
Window manufacturers can get their window products rated by the Window
Energy Rating Scheme (WERS), which rates the whole window including the frame,
complete with seals and locking points, not just the glass unit. The lower the
U-value of the window, the better its energy efficiency.