The cost of uPVC double glazed windows will vary dependent on factors such as:
- Location of window (upstairs, downstairs, etc)
- Area of the country you live
- Size of the window
- Quality of glass
- Energy rating
- Brand names
Taking all that into account, the average cost of double glazing per window in the UK would be around £425 for a 69 x 90 window, or £635 for larger (90 x 120) windows.
So, if you were looking to change the windows in a typical semi-detached home, comprising maybe a dozen windows with a mix of small uPVC windows and larger sizes, then you could expect to pay in the region of £6000.
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Why consider double glazed windows?
The primary reason modern homes will install double glazing because they help retain heat and minimise sound from outside.
As most of us will be aware, a primary objective for the majority of modern homeowners is to maximise the energy efficiency of their house.
On the one hand, this will be born from a moral urge to live a more environmentally responsible lifestyle, while on the other (more practical) hand, a more energy-efficient home means lower running costs and lower utility bills.
By installing a good to a high standard of double glazed windows into your home, it can save an average-sized UK semi-detached house about £80 per year in heating costs.
How does double glazing work?
The success of double glazing, in particular, is achieved via three component parts:
- The window itself minimises heat loss
- The frame and window combined prevent draughts
- The double glazing acts as an insulator in much the same way as cavity wall insulation.
The reason we call it double glazing is, quite simply, because there are two panes of glass in the window; an outside pane and an inside pane. Although positioned very close together, they are not pressed together, instead of having a small air gap, otherwise known as a tight air pocket.
Because the air is trapped, it can’t circulate, which prevents hot air from inside being transferred into the colder outside air, meaning your house retains its heat for longer.
The Different Styles of Windows
When selecting your uPVC windows for your home or property then you will basically be making a choice between three different types of double glazed window:
- Tilt and Turn
Let’s have a look at each type.
Historically, casement windows have been the go-to type for British homes. Attached to the frame via a hinge, casements are outwardly opening windows, typically from the side or top of the frame, coming in one of a range of styles:
- Side Hung
Probably the most popular casement, this is a simple side-hinged window to open and close with ease.
- Top Light
A larger fixed pane window with a narrow-hinged pane at the top, opening outwards
- Top Hung/ Awning
This is a popular choice if you want to have an open window even when it’s raining as the window is hinged at the top, opening outwards and preventing the rain from coming in.
- Bottom Hung/ Hopper
Hinged at the bottom, these are useful for ventilation purposes in basements and similar areas.
- Centre Hinge/ Pivot
Centrally hinged, to allow for wider opening.
Often used to replicate a Victorian or Georgian style, sash windows comprise a number of smaller panels (typically 2, 4 or 6) and are divided into a grid-style by bars.
They can provide a visually attractive and elegant finish to a home, although uPVC sash windows cost somewhat more than casements, as a rule. This is both because of the rather ornate style and the relative scarcity of natural-looking windows.
Tilt and Turn
A more modern style of window, the tilt and turn is a popular choice across Europe and growing in popularity in the UK.
With a hinge at the bottom of the window, the tilt and turn opens inwards, either a small amount or fully opened.
An alternative to the tilt and turn is the Dual Turn window, which is similarly bottom-hinged but is more like the sash in appearance.
What will best suit your home?
There is, of course, no definitive answer to this question. The reality is that every home or property is going to have different requirements, every person is going to have different tastes. All of which will mean that one type of double glazed window is going to lend itself better than others.
That’s not to say that all glazing is of equal standard, particularly when it comes to its energy efficiency qualities.
As is the case with home appliances like your fridge or washing machine, so uPVC double glazing is subject to a grading system that denotes its effectiveness.
Currently, windows are graded on a scale from A+ to G, with A+ rated windows offering the most energy-efficient option. It’s unlikely that you will find too many windows at the lower end of the scale, as UK window fitters are not allowed, by law, to install double glazing with a grade lower than C.
Considering triple glazing
Yes, triple glazing is also a thing. Typically uPVC windows and doors that are triple glazed tend to be found in areas where temperatures are prone to dropping especially low; such as Scandinavian countries.
The extra pane design offers additional insulation and can be up to 18 degrees warmer than a single pane, and 8 degrees warmer than double glazing. However, generally, a good quality double glazing will suffice for the UK climate.
Calculating the costs
To get an accurate quote you can gauge the price you should expect to pay by making some calculations of your requirements.
- Number of windows
- Window sizes
- Window type
- Tilt and Turn
- Example: full pane, top light, side hung
However, while understanding what you need can give you a good idea about pricing, you will only get a fully accurate price by having a full technical survey from a local double glazing fitter.
Double Glazing Installation
As with all home improvement projects, money can be saved by carrying out the window installation yourself. However, installing a uPVC window is not an easy task for the untrained fitter, even skilled DIY experts can find that their installations can be inadequate, meaning further costs down the line.
It’s much better to take on the extra expense of employing the services of a local, trusted and reputable tradesman. If you are purchasing your windows from an established provider, then they may be able to point you in the direction of a qualified fitter. Alternately, online searches, review sites and good old fashioned word of mouth are tried and tested methods.