Quality uPVC Windows

How to find the best quality uPVC windows for your money.

Best Quality Windows

Quality uPVC Windows We all want to get the best possible deal we can but that shouldn’t necessarily mean the lowest price. The best deal will probably not be the cheapest price. The best deal is about a trade off between the best quality and the lowest price.

As discussed in the previous section on uPVC Windows Prices, when looking to buy replacement windows there are several distinct factors that come into play. In terms of researching a company’s windows quality or just trying to understand the various aspects a play when looking into replacement windows, the two relevant elements are the frame and the double glazed unit.

Best Quality uPVC Windows

Looking at the frame first. uPVC is currently overwhelmingly the popular choice for replacement windows. The reasons are many, flexibility of choice of finish, longevity, recyclability and superior heat retention properties all go to make this the case. However, as with any manufactured product there can be considerable variations in the quality of the materials and finishes used. You can find of more details about the construction and properties of uPVC here, and it is a good starting point for your research into quality.

The main question you should be asking yourself is “what should I be looking to get the best quality uPVC windows in terms of assessing the quality of the materials used.

PVC-u Profile

quality double glazingThe first part is to find out the quality of the PVC-u profile used in the construction of the window frame. Initially you should look at some of the major brands such as Rehau, Selecta Systems, Veka and Deceuninck. You can find links to their sites here. These brands are necessarily right for everybody and there are some excellent generic PVC-u extrusions that are available. If you are going for a lesser or generic brand look for the relevant quality assurance marks.

The quality control system applied in the UK and across europe is pretty stringent. Elements that are assessed for the PVC-u profile include:

- Surface Condition

- Propensity for discolouration overtime

- Quality of any foil applied

- Whether the applied foil has adhered correctly to the PVC-u profile

- Propensity to stain

- Propensity to corrode

uPVC Frame Construction

Here, again there are British Standards that can be obtained for the manufacture of the uPVC frame. These standards, like all British Standards are fairly rigorous. These include:

- The appearance of the mitre or join

- Joint strength test

- Colour matching of the components

- Hinges and hardware

- Weather strips

- Ventilation elements

These are just some of the areas tested. As with the PVC-u profile the list is long and comprehensive, as it should be to receive a Kite Mark. The relevant uPVC Window mark to look for is BS EN 12608-1:2016

Quality Double Glazing

Double Glazing UnitThe same equation stands for glass if not more so, the best quality double glazing isn’t the cheapest. The glazing unit is the part that, although might just look functional, is actually imbued with an incredible amount of technology and if you get it right will, over the period of their life, is likely save you more than your initial cost.

There are many decisions you will have to make. Whether to go for double or triple glazing is likely to come down to cost. As the the glass manufacturer this again will come down to budget. The main criteria you should look for is that the inner glass is Low-E glass and the outer glass is Iron glass (you can read more about this here).

With glass using an established brand may be more important. Glass technology has come a long way in recent years. Probably the best known brand of Low-E glass is Pilkington K Glass, but French company Saint Gobain with their Planitherm and the American company, Guardian Glass, with Climaguard , have move heat retention efficiency on another notch.

The second aspect to consider is the gas used between the double or triple glazed panes. It is generally either air or an inert gas, usually argon. Argon has better heat retention properties. It is one of the questions that you need to ask when looking for the best quality double glazing as it is important that you compare like with like.

Energy Rating

Double Glazing Unit

Whilst choosing any of the above brands is a safe bet, the key aspect to check is the the energy rating. Simply speaking, this is the rating that gives you an indication of the amount of saving in energy costs you can make over the course of a year. A rated windows provide the greatest savings. High quality upvc windows should be A rated and are the best option, if affordable.

Windows that have an energy evaluation should have the U- value of the window shown on the energy label. What is the U-value? A u value is a measure of how readily energy, in this case heat, can pass through. The higher the value the more heat escapes while the lower the value the less heat passes through. This means you should be looking for the lowest possible U-rating.

With glass using an established brand may be more important. Glass technology has come a long way in recent years. Probably the best known brand of Low-E glass is Pilkington K Glass, but French company Saint Gobain with their Planitherm and the American company, Guardian Glass, with Climaguard , have move heat retention efficiency on another notch.

The second aspect to consider is the gas used between the double or triple glazed panes. It is generally either air or an inert gas, usually argon. Argon has better heat retention properties. It is one of the questions that you need to ask when looking for the best quality double glazing as it is important that you compare like with like.

Summary

As you can see there is a lot of different aspects that you need to look at when researching the quality of various options in an effort to get good quality windows. However, the time you put will help greatly when you come to negotiate the price with the suppliers. It is also important to remember you can gave the best quality uPVC windows in the world, but if they are badly fitted it will probably count for nothing. Take a look at our guide to overseeing the fitting process.

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