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A guide to buying sash windows

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Sash windows, an archetypal feature of Georgian and Victorian properties, are not only aesthetically attractive but also hold various benefits for properties, whatever their style or era. The word ‘sash’ means a single frame for glazing, and indeed all sash windows are made up like this, with sliding sash windows comprising two sashes, which slide up and down, opening and closing the window from either the top or the bottom. This design, along with their traditional appearance, makes them both attractive and practical for a variety of builds, but there are various considerations to be aware of when thinking about purchasing sash windows for your property.

Matching your sash to your period property

When choosing a sash window for your period property, whether you are replacing an existing one or simply installing a new one in your window, it is important to correctly match the style of the sash to your property’s era. There have been several developments and changes to sash window styles throughout different periods of history, so make sure you get the right one for your house so that it blends in as seamlessly as possible, creating an attractive, traditional effect.

Easy to repair or replace?

Renovators often make the mistake of removing original wooden sash frames and replacing them with new ones, but this – for the most part – is not necessary, and is in fact diminishing the look and quality of the sash. By restoring the original frames to their original glory, homeowners can keep the traditional look and feel of their windows through simple repairs and waterproofing. Of course, in instances where sash window frames are beyond repair, there are many authentic replacements available from companies.

UPVC, metal or wood?

With the main draw of sash windows being their traditional appearance, it makes sense to have them constructed from wood. Genuine wooden sashes are favoured by those living in period properties or in conservation areas, where traditionalist attitudes about house restoration would not permit for window frames of other materials. Indeed wood, if properly cared for, is extremely durable, an excellent insulator and can last for hundreds of years.

However, there are alternative materials which sash frames can be made of that offer considerable benefits whilst maintaining the attractive aesthetic and essence of the sash window. UPVC frames are a good alternative to painted wood, offering a cheaper and very hard-wearing sash frame, although repairs are more difficult to this particular material. Sash frames can also be made from aluminum at their core, with a simple timber outer. In this instance, the frames have the best of both worlds; the durable and low-maintenance inner structure with the appealing, classic look of the wood on the outside.

Energy efficient?

Sash windows have worked to keep buildings light yet warm for hundreds of years. However, due to their nature as having two separate single glazes, they can let some draughts in once they have been through some wear and tear, making buildings susceptible to the cold. To improve their energy efficiency, homeowners can either draught-proof their windows, a ritual costing around £50 per month, or alternatively have entirely new windows fitted; a more costly option but one that is one-off and could save money further down the line thanks to improving many houses’ efficiency.

At Windows Direct London, we are specialists in the manufacture, supply and installation of beautiful sash windows for a number of properties. For more information, or to arrange for our services at your property, get in touch with our friendly team today – we’re happy to help with any enquiry.

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