Here’s a question that landed in my RE-GLAZE-It inbox just the other day and although I’ve responded directly to my customers enquires I thought it was worth sharing the email on to my websites and social media blogs
We have a problem with my triple-glazed windows. They are twelve years old but the seals have failed on some of the windows. Moisture has collected in between the panels of glass and they are beginning to look dirty, misted up and unsightly. The frames are UPVC. As the guarantee has run out the supplier has informed me that the only solution is replacement glazing panels. Is there any other solution or, if I do just get them professionally replaced, would it be better to go for double glazing? All my windows at the front of the house are double glazed and are about 20 years old and there is no problem with them, although towards the front is north facing as opposed to the blown South facing windows.
A. (RE-GLAZE-IT LEN)
Improving Energy usage and lowering your carbon footprint depend on controlling energy losses through the fabric of our homes. Windows are one of the main areas where energy can be lost from a property, so installing triple glazing as you did some twelve years ago was absolutely the correct approach at that time.
It’s unfortunate as an early adopter to triple, you are now suffering from early failure of your windows. It’s the space between the glazing unit, often filled with argon gas, that improves the energy efficiency; two spaces are, therefore, better at preserving heat but unfortunately this means less desiccant which in turn means less of a lifespan of the unit.
Nowadays the best Recomended option would be to return back to double glazed units but to insist upon using Saint Gobain’s PLANITHERM energy spec glass.
This will last a lot longer and be the most cost effective energy efficient route forward.
Triple glazing was right at the time but now PLANITHERM is available double glazing is back to being the winning formula.
You have correctly identified that your glazing units have failed by noting that moisture has collected between the glass, indicating that water vapour has penetrated the hotmelt seals that join the glass together. When the vapour changes to water, it cannot get out and then adds to the visible problem and your windows will no longer be as efficient in reducing energy losses. Eventually, liquid water will build up in the bottoms of the units which will look like a little fish tank, in certain circumstances, it can freeze and break the outer pane of glass.
Reasons for premature failure
There are many reasons why such failure can happen including, in early days of making units the mastic material used to join the elements can deteriorate fast; the manufacture process was not what it is today, the panes could have been too tight in the framework, or it could be down to poor fitting technique – bad packing by blocking the drainage holes, you are also correct in stating that south facing Vs north facing definitely as a time frame effect on how long your windows will remain mist free.
RE-GLAZE-IT replace JUST the glass in your failed double glazing and not the entire UPVC frame minimising costs and causing absolutely zero disruption to your home.
RE-GLAZE-IT have all the specialist beading removal tools to avoid any window framework damage whatsoever and are able to work on every and any window regardless of which glazing company did the original fitting.
We are familiar with all window system types.
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