Triple Glazing – what it could mean to you

Triple glazing profiles

In the past if your home was triple glazed that normally meant if you stepped outside the backdoor you’d be shivering in arctic conditions because triple glazing was vital to helping survive living in the harsh conditions of northern Canada, Alaska or the Scandinavian countries.

Incidentally, the coldest temperature recorded in Alaska, twice the size of Texas and therefore the largest US state, was a painful -62°C. So it’s no wonder that homeowners there and other similar countries opt for triple glazing, and plenty of hats and gloves.

Traditionally, here in Blighty most people who are having replacement windows installed will opt for double glazing, but we at SEH BAC predict it won’t be that many years before more and more people decide to go for triple glazing.

Letting light into the home used to be the only reason people used glass but now, with the increase in greenhouse gases and the known extra thermal benefits of triple glazing, things are set to change.

By 2016, all the new homes that are built are likely to be zero carbon and we are all being encouraged to reduce the U-values (the heat loss) in our homes. Install triple glazing and you won’t feel the need to turn the dial up on the thermostat in the way you used to, which means you’ll be saving yourself money in the long run.

It is not an exact science but a single-pane window normally has a U-value of around 5 and double glazing used to have a U-value of around 3, although manufacturing advances have slashed that number further. Now Building Regulations say that all new windows installed should have a U-value of no less than 1.6.

You can have triple glazing installed in windows, doors, roof lights and even a wall of glass, but it will be heavier so your frames are going to have to be able to accommodate it.

So how does triple glazing work? Well, in the same way double glazing: sandwiched together with an air pocket between the panes, except there are two air pockets and three panes of glass. Some manufacturers fill the cavity with an inert gas known as argon gas to further help reduce heat loss.

Light will still penetrate all three panes of glass but you should be aware that it will diminish very slightly but the trade off is much better insulation. In fact, experts say triple glazing is a third more efficient than double glazing. Think about that in relation to your fuel bills.

Homeowners in Scandinavian countries already know, but here in Europe we have been slower to catch on. So how much more expensive is it? Estimates vary between suppliers but they can be 20 to 50% more expensive than double glazing.

The other benefit of triple glazing is that it reduces noise pollution. If you live next to a very busy road it’s a must, certainly for those windows between you and the source of your noise pollution. So content yourself in the knowledge that you won’t need to reach for another jumper or the earplugs any more. For more details or for a triple glazing quote please contact us now

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