Adding char­ac­ter with wood win­dows

You can’t beat the nat­u­ral beauty of tim­ber win­dows, and they are also one of the most durable, high qual­ity op­tions. The Wood Win­dow Al­liance ex­plains the key con­sid­er­a­tions

Period Living - - Advertorial -

Pe­riod ar­chi­tec­ture not only boosts the value of a house, but makes it eas­ier to sell, too. The de­sire for her­itage means that peo­ple are will­ing to pay an av­er­age of 11 per cent more for a house with well-main­tained pe­riod fea­tures. Ac­cord­ing to Bri­tish home­own­ers, wood trumps plas­tic when it comes to char­ac­ter. Yet, per­haps due to out­dated be­liefs around func­tion­al­ity and energy ef­fi­ciency, al­most half of those liv­ing in pe­riod prop­er­ties have fit­ted PVCU win­dow frames.

Whether you are re­new­ing ex­ist­ing fea­tures or re­plac­ing your cur­rent win­dows and doors, wood is a ver­sa­tile ma­te­rial to work with and main­tain. To help you make the de­ci­sion, the Wood Win­dow Al­liance (WWA) has iden­ti­fied five key ques­tions to ask your­self be­fore in­vest­ing:

How long do I want my win­dows to last? Win­dows have vary­ing life­spans, av­er­ag­ing 25 to 30 years, but for a life­time’s ser­vice of around 60 years, choose fac­tory-fin­ished soft­wood.

How much main­te­nance can I put up with?

All win­dows need some main­te­nance. WWA fac­tory-fin­ished wood win­dows need a re-coat ev­ery 8-10 years – just a light sand­ing, then one or two top-coats; no strip­ping back. They can also be re­painted when you change colour schemes. How energy ef­fi­cient do they need to be?

WWA mem­bers of­fer the most ad­vanced en­er­gy­ef­fi­ciency wood win­dows in the UK. Higher lev­els can be achieved by adding triple-glaz­ing, for which tim­ber is ideal due to its strength. Oth­er­wise a dou­ble-glazed unit, Ar­gon filled, with warm-edge spac­ers and low-emis­siv­ity glass is an ideal op­tion.

what If I care about the environment? Cer­ti­fied sus­tain­able soft­wood is the best so­lu­tion for the environment, as it is low in tox­i­c­ity and has the low­est Global Warm­ing Po­ten­tial.

How Im­por­tant Is price vs qual­ity?

Triple-glazed alu­minium, hard­wood, mod­i­fied wood or alu­minium-clad tim­ber is high qual­ity and can be more ex­pen­sive than PVCU op­tions, but you get what you pay for. En­gi­neered soft­wood of­fers a good com­pro­mise be­tween qual­ity and af­ford­abil­ity. The qual­ity and en­gi­neer­ing of wood win­dows in the UK has un­der­gone a revo­lu­tion in re­cent years, with huge de­vel­op­ments in tech­nol­ogy lead­ing to an im­prove­ment in their per­for­mance and dura­bil­ity.

All WWA mem­bers are FSC or PEFC Chain of Cus­tody cer­ti­fied and meet strict per­for­mance, qual­ity and sus­tain­abil­ity cri­te­ria. Find a mem­ber near you at wood­win­dowal­

From left: Storm­sure oak win­dow by Jeld-wen; tim­ber sash win­dow by The Sash Win­dow Work­shop; Tra­di­tional range slid­ing sash win­dows by Ge­orge Barns­dale; painted case­ment win­dow by Mum­ford & Wood

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