If your property still has only single glazed windows, you might be keen to enhance your understanding of what the environmental benefits of secondary glazing actually are.
Prior to looking at why this form of glazing might be considered, it firstly is necessary to define exactly what it comprises. In nature it is very similar to double glazing, but costs less and requires no extra planning permission because no structural alterations are made. This makes it a very neat alternative for the less affluent or those bound by building regulations.
Installation of secondary glazed windows should be carried out by a qualified fitter for best results, but the process is fairly simplistic and anyone with sound DIY experience should be able to do the same job at a fraction of the cost. The two main forms of this glazing are the basic version which is simply a plastic sheet fitted over the existing window, and the more advanced option which is an additional glass pane fitted in a frame added to the existing window.
Greater thermal performance is generally considered to be the main advantage of these windows as an increase in efficiency of up to 60% is obtainable and troublesome draughts can quickly be remedied. As most energy conscious environmentalists know, the majority of heat lost in the home is through the windows, and carbon emissions can be significantly reduced by fitting a secondary window.
The impact of noise pollution on health is often ignored, but the stress caused by this can in fact have a severe negative impact. Whether it is noise from cars on the road, the stereo system of the neighbors or just the general loudness of society, these disturbances can be minimized by a new window as improved acoustic insulation is another key benefit.
Greater protection is also provided as the stronger barrier can prevent unwelcome guests from breaking in via the window. Gunshots, explosions and fires are also less likely to penetrate a strengthened window, and those more concerned with security will find peace of mind an unexpected advantage.
As well as the obvious environmental benefits, the fact that heating bills can reduce by up to a third is a real bonus. This saving must be factored into any calculation made when determining whether the glazing is affordable, and of course the monthly savings made will be ongoing.
In order to avoid bias, it should also be noted that there is one common complaint about secondary glazed windows. If the installation is not carried out to a sufficiently high standard there is a real risk of condensation. It is essential that if condensation builds up, you try to allow enough air circulation to prevent the problem worsening as this can cause the windows to rot from the inside.
It is clear that understanding the enivironmental benefits of secondary glazing is of paramount importance in deciding which glazing option to choose, and both the advantages and disadvantages must be considered carefully.
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