uPVC windows in many cases are the default option for homeowners when selecting windows. Perhaps right down to the mass promotional initiatives plastered over the television and radio, or possibly because their special offers seem enticing.
However, in fact, there are more to windows than the cheap uPVC options. Here we dispel some of the common myths about uPVC's biggest competitor - the wooden window.
Wood isn't thermally efficient, so does not help reduce energy usage.
Wood naturally has a really low thermal conductivity which makes it a great insulator. However, energy efficiency primarily boils down to the specification from the glazing unit. As a result, this makes it important to look at the U-values of a window because this refers back to the quantity of heat loss per per square metre of material. The lower the U-value, the minus the heat loss.
Another more current approach to understanding the energy efficiency of glass, is to consider its Energy Rating: A is the most efficient and G is the least.
Whilst it is difficult to determine the exact number of recycled windows, research compiled in the Vinyl 2010 progress report implies that the audited amount of recycled wood waste in 2007 was Two million tonnes in contrast to 42,122 tonnes of PVC recycled waste within the same year.
Along with the truth that certain designers and manufacturers are now using wood waste and shavings as biomass energy, wood is one of the most eco-friendly material options.
Wood windows require a lot of maintenance.
Unfortunately no window choice is void of maintenance, however well manufactured windows will require nothing more than a coat of paint every 8 years or so. The minimal maintenance required explains why many Victorian properties still have the same wooden frames as when they were built!
Wooden windows are great if you want single glazing, however i want double glazed windows.
A typical assumption is that double-glazed windows need to have uPVC frames, but this can be a far cry in the truth. Whilst legislation may dictate that period properties have to have single glazed windows, wood windows are made to suit double-glazing nearly as much as they are single-glazing.
As a result, wood windows can be a flexible option for the homeowner, providing long term value through high energy efficiency and low maintenance.
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