What do I need to know when Buying Windows?
How hard can it be? As long as you can open some of them and they keep the rain out, surely that will do? Well…not necessarily. This article covers the basics of buying windows that not only open and stop rain coming in, but will decrease your energy bills and last for a lifetime.
Know how to differentiate a Well-Marketed window from a Well-Made window.
Many products these days have lots of money spent on marketing, and little money spent on manufacturing the product itself. Lots of advertising. Magazine adverts. Presence at exhibitions. These should all be early warning signs of a product that has lots of money spent on advertising. Most prospective customers finding this web site will have scoured the internet to find quality windows and found very few contenders to get quotations from.
There are very few companies selling German made windows in the UK, and with good reason. The differences between German and UK building regulations, buildings and windows mean that product must be selected carefully before bringing it to the UK market.
This is where Enlightened Windows has found its niche. Our staff thoroughly understand both modern methods of construction and our existing UK housing stock. We pride ourselves on helping you to carefully select the best product for your home. Products are prudently picked from the whole of the German window market to bring the best and most suitable products to our shores.
If it looks and feels good…
Many common sense principles will be able to tell you how good a window manufacturer. There are a number of aspects that you should look into when buying windows.
- Check the physical weight of the product.
- Do the seals in the corners of the windows meet? This sounds incredible but, with mass manufacturing, it is often not the case.
- To what tolerance are the windows made?
- Look to see if the timber being used is laminated. It should be.
- Are the mitres on aluminium frames welded?
- Is finger jointed timber being used in the manufacture of the window? This is often a cheat’s way of being able to use cheap timber and have little waste instead of buying good quality high grade joinery timber.
- Is the face timber of the window GUARANTEED to be knot free?
- Are the window seals made from foam rubber or solid butyl rubber. Butyl rubber lasts, and lasts, and lasts. Foam rubber degrades relatively quickly; loses its elasticity and, with this, the window loses air-tightness. Have you ever fitted draught seals around a door? They are quickly squashed as the door sits against the frame and need replacing within just a few years.
All our German windows can proudly say that they are made using only the best quality materials and standards.
Rate each product against your criteria
If you have not been able to answer “yes” to most of the above questions for the product you have been looking at, then you probably are looking at a well marketed window. And a majority of your spend is contributing to advertising costs, rather than the quality of the product. Like buying good wine with a little knowledge of the basics, you can learn how to spot good quality.
When considering buying windows, most of our customers create a comparison spreadsheet. Not just for the physical yes/no data. But ratings out of 10 for how you think the product looks, feels and operates. A showroom visit, or requesting a visit with sample is great for this.
The German Way: German Windows, Tilt Turn
Many of the German factories we work with operate in a small geographical area and don’t advertise at all. Many are still family companies that have been making the finest quality products for generations. They have a reputation, a well respected product and, for this reason, people in the area will naturally buy windows from their local manufacturer – who has survived in business by providing a superb quality product.
Although we are all English at Enlightened windows, we have very strong German and Scandinavian business connections. Strategically, we buy a product that has a higher-than-average cost of manufacture and, as a result, superb quality. See it for yourself: request a quotation and sample to be sent. We believe we are unique as a company. Come and see some German tilt turn windows, and you will be pleasantly surprised.