Origin Global Aluminium Doors 😍

We are delighted to introduce the luxury Origin Global window and door range to our ever expanding portfolio:

1920-x-600-Origin-orangery
1920-x-600-Origin-OI-30-Hallway-1
1920-x-600-Origin-SOHO-OB-36-1
1920-x-600-Origin-internal-French-door
1920-x-600-Origin-sliding-doors-kitchen-1
1920-x-600-Origin-bifolds-5pane-kitchen-1
1920 x 600 Origin OB-36+ Architects Studio ASP3403
1920 x 600 Origin bifolds 05-20142608
1920 x 600 Origin entrance doors
1920 x 600 Beaconsfield large bifolds white

Bifolding doors

SOHO Collection and Contemporary Collection bifold doors
The brand new SOHO Collection (left) and the classic Contemporary Collection (right)

Our Origin Bifold Doors are availalbe in two collections, the all new industrial style steel-look SOHO collection and the classic Contemporary Collection. Handcrafted with meticulous attention to detail, both collections redefine the standards of elegance, making a bold statement in any architectural setting.

All bifold door collections are also available configured as French doors:

Find out more:

Sliding patio doors

Offering four different sightlines across two systems – the Origin Artisan Slider and the Origin Patio Slider. Some of the slimmest aluminium sliding doors on the market with expansive uninterrupted views, no compromising on quality or thermal performance and industry leading security features.

THE ARTISAN SLIDER OS-20:
Minimal and sleek in design, the Artisan Slider has ultra-slim sightlines of just 20mm. This is a bonded system (wet glazed) where the glass and frame comes as one unit. The benefits to this are that the doors have improved weather tightness and slimmer sightlines are achieved. This is a sliding door that’s incredibly secure, thermally efficient and aesthetically stunning.

Height = min 1600mm / max 3000mm
Width = min 1228mm / max 13,196mm
U-Value = 1.4W/m2K
THE PATIO SLIDER: OS-29, OS-44 AND OS-77:
A modern take on the traditional sliding patio door with three sightline options available. The OS-29 is the slimmest, with sightlines of just 29mm, maximising glass and the level of natural light which can flood in. OS-44 with sightlines of 44mm and OS-77 with sightlines of 77mm provide a more traditional style of patio system, with an injection of effortless elegance.

Find out more:

Interior doors

Introducing these industrial art-deco style stunners to grace your interiors. We love these stylish new internal aluminium doors, that perfectly complement our new SOHO external door collection. You can choose how many glazing bars you want – more for a heritage look and less for an of-the-moment industrial look, and as for colour, well you have 150 RAL colours to choose from.

Internal door configurations

Available as single doors, double doors, fixed screen and corner configurations.

Sleek and luxurious, the slimline frames of our OI-30 doors seamlessly blend with your interior design style for a visually striking finish.

  • Choose a frame-free option if you prefer, fitting the door straight into the existing frame fro total ease.
  • Blackout panels and kickplates options are available.
  • Create break out rooms or office rooms or any room you choose with our corner configurations or fixed screen room dividers. The only limit is your imagination.

Find out more:

Aluminium Entrance Doors

The Origin Aluminium Front Door is a precision-driven, expertly engineered object of beauty. From single front doors and double doors that can be used in a home or garage space, through to grand entranceways with sidelights and fanlights, our range of front doors are made from exclusive premium grade aluminium, enabling you to create a personal statement with ease; because first impressions matter.

Choose from ten stylish “panels” in a wide range of colours. From panels that include lots of glass to flood your hallway with natural light, classic styles that never go out of fashion, and ultra-modern aluminium panels – there’s a style to suit every taste.

Or, why not opt for a glass solution…

Alternatively, you can also specify a glazed door with clear or frosted glass. In addition, you can also opt for a door with a midrail. Popular in porches and as a back door or kitchen door, the midrail can accommodate glass on both the top and bottom, or a panel can be used in the lower section for additional privacy.

Find out more:

For more information on our full range of Origin doors or to chat with us further, please contact us:

Which uPVC double glazed windows are the best for me? 🤔

We all want the best for our homes. But if we’re thinking about upgrading our windows, what exactly are the “best” double glazed windows for our home, and why? The best of anything will most likely depend heavily on your own personal needs, wants, expectations and inevitably your budget.

One of the most popular reasons to invest in new windows is improved energy efficiency. Replacing old, draughty and rotten windows with new, energy efficient windows can make a huge difference to your home. They look better, cleaner, more up to date, and if you want to, it’s a great way to completely “reinvent” and modernise (or even re-traditionalise!) the entire look of your home.

There are many different types of uPVC window, so how do you go about choosing the right type of window for you, your home and your budget?

Window styles and different types of window.

  • Casement uPVC windows in standard and flush fit (Rehau) ££/£££
  • Vertical sliding uPVC sash windows (ECOslide) £££
  • Timber replacement uPVC flush fit windows (Residence) ££££

A top consideration for most homeowners is what style of window they are looking for. Keep to the same look, or go for something different? If you’re looking to replace the original windows in your home, in most instances we would advise you to stay as close as possible to the existing aesthetics, as these tend to work better with the style of your home.

If you’re embarking on a major refurbishment project, this is a great opportunity to give your home a fresh new modern look.

However in some cases, particularly with Victorian and Edwardian homes, a previous window replacement may have resulted in the traditional window being lost to a modern casement that looks completely out of place. Reinstating new modern energy efficient sash windows or traditional style casements will make a significant improvement to your home’s visual aesthetics.

1. STANDARD uPVC CASEMENT WINDOWS (££/£££)

A classic 7-sided bay with new replacement REHAU uPVC casement windows. We’ve kept it as close as possible to the original windows, with diamond leaded lower sashes and rectangle leaded stained fanlights. Dummy sashes provide equal sightlines to the exterior.

2. VERTICAL SLIDING uPVC SASH WINDOWS (£££)

Ugly casement windows that are completely out of character from an earlier replacement install are replaced with traditional style ECOSlide vertical sliding sash windows in uPVC with single astragal Georgian bar. What an improvement!

3. PREMIUM uPVC TIMBER REPLACEMENT WINDOWS (££££)

A complete change here! From the original crittal leaded windows to new timber replacement Residence 9 flush fitting windows in Painswick woodgrain effect foil. A traditional style that looks fresh and modern.

Check out our Residence teaser video below … go on, we can all dream! 😍

Add a little colour.

Choosing a different colour window can give an immediate update to your home’s kerb appeal. After standard white, anthracite grey is our most popular colour. All of our uPVC windows offer an exciting palette of colour choices, including both smooth finishes and woodgrain effect foils (that resemble painted wood) in the following options:

  • Colour/woodgrain effect foil external with smooth white internal.
  • Colour both external and internal.
REHAU uPVC windows in oak effect and anthracite grey. The mix of colours and the bold shaped windows to the front add a fresh contemporary edge to this property.
ECOSlide uPVC sliding sash windows in black.
The wow factor! Residence Collection uPVC windows and doors in silvered oak and ginger oak.

Recommended further reading:

For more information on our full range of uPVC windows or to chat with us further, please contact us:

New for 2024! 📣 Introducing our brand new range of bespoke timber windows.

Traditional flush casement windows, elegant sliding box sash windows, decorative and shaped windows – come and be inspired by an abundance of handcrafted choice.

Perfect for conservation areas, listed buildings, traditional properties, period homes and in fact, anyone who prefers the natural aesthetics of wood.

Sometimes, only the best will do.

Take pride in transforming your house into a home with our meticulously handcrafted bespoke timber windows and doors. With a passion for craftsmanship and an unwavering commitment to quality, we will bring your vision to life, creating windows that not only enhance the beauty of your home but that also stand as a testament to timeless elegance.

  • Unrivaled craftsmanship: Each window we create is crafted by skilled artisans with years of experience. Our commitment to traditional craftsmanship ensures that every detail is meticulously attended to, resulting in windows that exude quality and character.
  • Customised to perfection: We understand that every home is unique, and so are the preferences of our clients. Our bespoke timber windows are tailor-made to your exact specifications, ensuring a perfect fit that complements the architectural style of your home.
  • Premium materials: We source only the finest timber for our windows, ensuring durability, longevity, and a stunning finish. Our materials are responsibly harvested, promoting sustainability and environmental consciousness.
  • Energy efficiency: Our bespoke timber windows are designed to meet modern energy efficiency standards. Enjoy a comfortable and well-insulated home while appreciating the natural beauty of timber.
White painted factory finished wooden vertical sliding sash windows, French doors and bespoke orangery.

Why choose handcrafted timber windows?

Aesthetics. Nothing quite matches the look of a well crafted wooden window. Timber windows have a classic authenticity that uPVC can’t compete with. Whilst recent developments now mean that you can have flush fitting uPVC windows with woodgrain effect foils and mechanical joints – the whole idea (ironically) is to replicate a timber window as closely as possible.

Innovation. Engineered and modified timbers increase the resistance to rot and mean almost no moisture-related swelling or shrinking.

Investment. As an upfront cost, timber windows are more expensive than uPVC, but if they are well maintained, the total costs are balanced out in the longer term.

Maintenance. Whilst timber windows will require maintenance every few years, well maintained wooden windows can last up to 70 years or more, far outperforming their uPVC counterparts.

Environment and sustainability. Choosing a reliable and sustainable product like wood is a responsible decision. Not only is timber a renewable resource, but a single tree will absorb upto one tonne of carbon dioxide in its life and generate enough oxygen to support two people.

Energy efficient. Advanced manufacturing techniques can now incorporate modern seals, thermally efficient sealed units and secure locking systems.

Factory finished painted timber windows with feature monkey tail handles and peg stays.

The process – how it works for you.

  • Consultation: Our journey together begins with a thorough consultation. Our expert surveyor will discuss your preferences, style, and functional requirements to create a customised design that aligns with your vision.
  • Design and approval: Once the design is conceptualised, we provide detailed drawings and 3D renderings for your approval. We value your input and ensure that the final design exceeds your expectations.
  • Craftsmanship: Our skilled artisans take over, meticulously crafting each window. This hands-on approach guarantees the highest level of precision and attention to detail.
  • Installation: Our team of professionals ensures a seamless installation process, treating your home with the care and respect it deserves. We aim for minimal disruption, leaving you with beautifully installed bespoke timber windows that will stand the test of time.

Our dedication to exceptional customer service means that we are with you every step of the way, from the initial consultation to the final installation.

For more information on our timber windows please contact us:

Composite Fire Doors: safety, security and fire protection all in one. 👍

Our composite fire doors have been fire tested on both the internal and external sides for up to 30 minutes with fully independent third party certification.

A composite fire door is visually very similar to a standard composite door but with the added protection of specific fireproof materials. Controlled and exacting manufacturing standards coupled with rigorous third party testing* for fire doors not only demonstrates integrity against fire but also delivers performance relative to smoke control, security, weather, sound insulation and thermal performance.

*Bi-directional tests (tested on both sides of the door) are conducted by third party UKAS accredited test centres. (UKAS is the national accreditation body for the UK). 

Why would I need a fire door?

Fire doors actively help to control the spread of fire and smoke, allowing you vital time to evacuate safely. It is a legal requirement for residential apartment blocks to have an FD30* entrance door fitted. It is also an essential consideration for houses of multiple occupancy and any house that has an internal door leading from an integral garage into the home. Any new build or home renovation that has three or more floors must have fire doors fitted to every habitable room that leads from a stairwell. This applies to loft conversions where an extra floor has been added to a two-storey home.

*FD30 means the door has been tested and proven to withstand fire for 30 minutes. 

Why would I choose a composite fire door?

Composite doors were designed to emulate a traditional painted wooden door without any of the maintenance concerns associated with timber doors. Composite fire doors are available in both traditional and contemporary styles, with toplight and glazing options, a wide choice of colours and approved door furniture. You don’t have to compromise on looks, style, security or protection.

Examples of FD30 composite fire doors.

How are fire doors tested?

Doorsets (the full door, frame, any toplight and door furniture) are furnace tested at a UKAS accredited test laboratory. The doorset is secured into the furnace wall and is then fire tested on both the internal and external sides. Sensors are attached to the face of the door and record the performance of different elements of the doorset, such as deflection of the doorleaf and temperature of the furnace. The duration of the test is the number of minutes for which the doorset is to be classified.

The results of this furnace test form a fire door test report, detailing the exact specification of the product and how it was tested. It’s important to remember that the fire test report demonstrates how one particular sample fire doorset performed at one point in time.

The fire door test report is then combined with third party certification. The manufacturer ensures that critical factory production control systems are put in place and are regularly audited, together with the control of raw materials and components. This means that every doorset is manufactured to the same exacting standards and specification as the original doorset in the furnace test.

Example of a composite fire door furnace test.
Composite fire entrance doors in a residential communal hallway.
Courtesy of Guardsman Fire Doors.

All our FD30 fire doors have been tested to BS476 Part 22, and are subject to the Q-Mark enhanced security scheme. In addition, the doors have also been tested to BS EN 1634-3 smoke control test and comply with PAS023/PAS024 security accreditations.

For more information on our composite fire doors please contact us:

Can I save money on my energy bills by installing double glazing? Yes you can.

Black aluminium windows
Black aluminium windows double glazed in energy efficient argon-filled
sealed units with feature rectangle leads.

Did you know? 18% of heat loss occurs through windows. Across the UK, around 7% of households still don’t have double glazing. Heat is lost through single glazing twice as fast as through standard double glazing.

energysavingtrust.org.uk

All properties lose heat through their windows. But energy efficient double glazing, coupled with other energy saving measures keeps your home warmer and quieter as well as helping to reduce your energy bills.

What is energy efficient glazing?

Otherwise known as Low-e (low emissivity), this is a type of energy-efficient glass designed to prevent heat escaping out through your windows to the cold outdoors. Low-e glass has a special coating which is a poor radiator of heat and does not allow heat to be transferred to the outside. Instead, the low-e coating actually reflects the heat back into your room. Low-e glass can be used throughout your home to improve its energy efficiency. Windows, doors, conservatories and rooflights can all benefit from the use of energy-efficient glazing to help keep the heat in and save money on your energy bills.

How Low-e glass works in your windows and doors to prevent heat loss.

Window Energy Ratings (WER)

Window Energy Ratings (known as WER) are a guide to the energy performance of your windows. There are two main schemes run by the British Fenestration Ratings Council (BFRC) and the British Standards Institute (BSI). The window energy rating scheme checks all the components to ensure the final window achieves the energy efficient standard claimed. This means that you just need to look for the A-E ratings and remember the higher the energy rating, the more energy efficient it is. Windows installed by Ruislip Windows usually achieve at least an A rating, and often higher.

Examples of WER

Benefits of installing energy rated windows:

  • Reassurance of certified scheme approval of the windows.
  • Improves the energy-efficiency of your home, reducing the amount of energy you use and helping you to save money on your heating bills.
  • Significantly more effective than existing single glazing.
  • Manufactured to UK and European quality standards and meet the requirements for building regulations concerning energy efficiency of homes.

By installing double glazing into an entirely single glazed house, you could save the following each year (for a typical gas heated home):

What to consider

We recognise that choosing new windows and doors for your home is a big decision, and one you want to be confident in getting right first time. So it’s good to know that even our standard uPVC windows and doors (Rehau/Kömmerling) achieve WER of A+. However different customer circumstances will determine which windows and doors you can replace with double glazing and what products you can replace them with, for instance:

CONSERVATION AREA

What if you live in a Conservation Area or a listed building? There are strict rules about what you can replace your existing windows and doors with (such as like for like) and that can restrict your choices and options.

PERIOD PROPERTY

If you’re in a Victorian or Edwardian building you may have traditional sash windows, or an Art Deco home with steel crittal windows. You may have original stained glass and leads that you would like to preserve.

ALUMINIUM

Aluminium is a popular choice for contemporary homes but is more expensive than uPVC. Energy ratings have improved significantly for aluminium profiles, but uPVC generally hits higher energy efficiency targets.

We offer a wide range of products and many of these will be suitable for traditional properties who want to preserve their aesthetic style:

  • Sash windows: “A” rated uPVC sash windows that replicate very well a traditional box sash window. Good aesthetics and great energy efficiency mean these windows will make a huge difference to your home.
  • Timber replacement windows: “A” rated premium uPVC windows that don’t skimp on authentic style. Flush fitting like traditional wooden windows and available in a range of painted wood effect grained foils. 90° timber effect corner welds and ovolo putty Georgian bars complement their traditional aesthetics beautifully. See more here >>
  • Alitherm Heritage aluminium windows and doors: perfect for all crittal replacement installs, with slim slender profiles. Also available as multi-part windows and doors – ideal for commercial premises and warehouse flat conversions and even internal doors.

For more information about the energy ratings of our products and how they could save you money on your energy bills, please contact us. Also, energy ratings are available in all our product brochures for each type of window and door that we install. Download our brochures from our main website >>

See also our other articles:

We hope to see you very soon! 🙂

An Aftersales Service you can count on, every single time.

When you’re spending a lot of money improving your home, you want to be sure you are making the right choices, and that you’re protected if something goes wrong.

It can be a minefield out there. Despite a much more regulated industry these days, there are still companies that will use high pressure sales tactics and “too good to miss” offers to get you to sign up. At Ruislip Windows we want to make the whole experience of buying your new windows and doors as stress-free and as pleasant as possible.

That means no high pressure sales tactics or dubious sales practices just to get your job. And only honest, practical advice and a realistic quote without any “signing up” deadlines.

Plus, as members of both FENSA and CERTASS, we are also required to provide our customers with all of the following:

  • Protection of any deposit taken
  • A guarantee covering the completed installation
  • An insurance policy to cover this guarantee should we cease trading*
  • Suitably qualified and assessed site operatives

*Check out our blog post on Insurance Backed Guarantees for more information on these.

Our reputation matters to us and we work to ensure we maintain our high standards of service for each and every customer. We receive a lot of very positive feedback from our customers about our aftersales service and this is something that we are understandably proud of.

Our commitment to our customers doesn’t end once your installation is complete – this is simply the first phase of the Ruislip Windows’ Service. The second is the aftersales support you will receive. In many instances you may have no need to call upon us, but occasionally something can go amiss and when it does, we are here to help put it right as promptly and as smoothly as possible. We have our own service engineer to tackle any problems you may experience. General repairs will usually be undertaken within a few working days; urgent repairs on the same day. And what’s more, this service is not chargeable within your guarantee period.

We receive a lot of positive feedback for our aftersales service.

At the time of writing, we have over 480 five star reviews on Yell, and over 70 five star reviews on Google – so we must be doing something right! For further information, please check out the following (all links open in a new tab):

Want to know more about our aftersales service? Then give us a call on (020) 8868 1133 or drop us an email – we look forward to hearing from you soon! 🙂

SMARTS Visoglide bifold and sliding patio doors

The latest addition to our portfolio of aluminium architectural doors is the much respected Visoglide range from Smarts.

With over 35 years’ experience, Smarts Architectural Aluminium are one of the UK’s leading supplier of window and door systems, taking great pride not only in the quality, breadth and depth of their product range, but also in their design expertise and support services.

Smarts Aluminium 4-panel bifold door
We’re excited to add Visoglide and Visofold doors to our portfolio, which currently includes Aluk and our premium range from Reynaers.

Create a relaxed feeling of light and space and frame the beautiful views of your garden and beyond. Suitable for installation in any room, these elegant door systems add a touch of finesse and provide a striking glass façade.

Whether you want to open up space using our Visofold multi-panelled slide-folding doors which concertina back to one or both sides of the frame, or introduce a Visoglide sliding door (comprising two or more large panes which slide open to leave the panels behind each other), we have the perfect solution. With high-security glazing and locking mechanism (including security deadlock and hook bolts), and an unrivalled colour range to choose from (including dual-colour options), each door can be tailored to meet your own precise requirements.

Smarts Aluminium sliding patio doors.
Smarts Aluminium sliding patio doors in white.

Our systems have been designed to not only withstand all that the elements can throw at them, but also to deliver minimum heat loss and great thermal efficiency.

  • Renowned for its perfect combination of light weight and high strength, aluminium is the ideal material for sliding and folding doors, providing slim, elegant designs and outstanding performance.
  • With a life-span measured in decades rather than years, together with extremely low maintenance requirements, aluminium has become the perfect choice for home owners.
  • All our systems are designed with performance, looks and efficiency in mind, with each frame incorporating a ‘thermal-break’ to insulate doors against heat loss, raise the internal temperature of a house and help reduce the risk of condensation.
  • Maintenance for aluminium systems is simple and straightforward, with a routine ‘wipe-clean’ all that is required to keep the products looking their best. With no requirement for re-painting or re-varnishing, aluminium windows and doors will never fade, deteriorate or rust, even in harsh environments, or coastal locations.
Smarts Aluminium 4-panel bifold door in anthracite.
Smarts Aluminium 4-panel bifold door in anthracite.

Discover more and download the latest brochure from our website here.

Condensation

For the glass and glazing industry, the transition from winter to spring and summer to autumn often sees an influx in customers asking why they are seeing external condensation on their windows, especially from those with higher performing, low-emissivity glazing. While some homeowners may see it as a nuisance, external condensation is a tell-tale sign that energy-efficient windows are actually doing their job.

However, if condensation is appearing on the inside surface of your windows or between the panes of double or triple glazing, this is for a very different reason.

You can download our CERTASS Consumer Guide to Condensation below:

EXTERNAL CONDENSATION

External condensation happens because of the dew point – the temperature at which air can’t hold any more water vapour, causing droplets of liquid water to form. When the air next to a piece of glass reaches this temperature (which varies with humidity) condensation forms on the surface.

External condensation is more common with modern, high performing, low-emissivity (low-e) glazed windows, as the outer pane is colder as a result of heat being retained inside the home. With single or older double-glazed windows, more heat is passing through, warming the outer pane and reducing the likelihood of external condensation. An analogy is frost on roofs – those with good loft insulation can remain frosted for a long time, while those without quickly defrost.

Above: External condensation with the tell-tale gap around the edges as shown here indicates your low-e sealed units are performing well.

This phenomenon is more likely to happen in the spring and autumn, when cold morning and evenings combine with high levels of humidity in the air.

Not all panes are affected by early morning condensation, even in the same window. Small differences in the orientation and the position of objects outside, such as trees or a close building, can change the surface temperature of the glass to the point that one pane suffers and another doesn’t.

There is little that can be done to avoid condensation to the outside of the window entirely without specialist glazing. However, its occurrence doesn’t tend to last for long. Once the window pane warms from the sun, the moisture evaporates and the condensation clears. The air movement from a gentle breeze can also help to clear it. You will find that as the weather warms (spring) or cools (autumn) the phenomenon simply disappears.

CONDENSATION IN BETWEEN PANES

Condensation within the cavity of a sealed unit is likely to indicate a failure of the edge seal. You will usually notice a misting or “steamed up” effect inside the gap between the panes of the sealed unit. In this case, the sealed unit has broken down and will need replacing. Sealed units are designed to last many years, but occasionally may break down due to some external factor or a manufacturing default or simply due to age. If your windows are still under guarantee, then you may be able to have your broken down unit replaced under your guarantee.

CONDENSATION ON THE INSIDE

All air contains water vapour, but the amount of water air can hold is determined by the temperature of that air. This ratio is called the relative humidity. Hot air is able to carry much more moisture than cold air, so as the temperature of air rises it is able to hold a greater volume of water. The water comes from everyday activities including bathing, cooking and washing. Even our breathing causes condensation, and this is why your car will steam up when you sit with the windows closed and the fan off.

As soon as warm air, containing vapour, hits a cooler surface, it will condense. This is most obvious on windows, mirrors and wall tiles, but condensation can also gather on walls and ceilings and often go unnoticed. The only way of preventing condensation is to provide ventilation. The warm air, containing the water vapour, will rise and circulate around the room until it finds a cooler surface, unless we let that air out and some cooler air in.

In order to ensure that there is good ventilation in your home, a change of air is recommended in all rooms of the house at least once a day, and ideally more often. Install extractor fans at the sources of water vapour such as the bathroom and kitchen. Increasing the room temperature so that the air can hold more water vapour without condensing can also help.

AXA Insurance helpful video on how to prevent condensation and mould in your home.
  • Ventilate your home regularly and open your windows. If you have trickle vents, leave them open.
  • Fit an extractor fan, and use it: ensure your bathroom fan is working while you are bathing and showering, use your kitchen extractor fan when you are cooking.
  • Avoid drying washing indoors. If you have a tumble dryer, ensure it is properly vented or use a self-condensing model.
  • If the condensation still remains a problem, use a dehumidifier.

Want to know more technical details about condensation? We recommend this online article from St Gobain here. Plus AXA Insurance have put together a thorough guide about condensation – what causes it and how to stop it. If you need any further help then give us a call on (020) 8868 1133 or drop us an email – we look forward to hearing from you soon!

Feeling Flush? We check out the new Flush casements that are giving wood a run for their money.

Gone are the days when people had to rely on traditional and expensive materials for older, quaint and period properties. Now you don’t have to compromise on appearance if opting for more efficient and modern uPVC solutions. 

One feature that would always stand out on a wooden casement window was that the casements would sit flush to the frame. This would give a neater, more symmetrical look, and until recently, it wasn’t something that a uPVC could emulate. Opening vents on a uPVC window sat proud from the frame, often creating unequal sightlines, and, if you chose dummy sashes to create an equal sightline (ideal for feature leads and Georgians), the vents could often appear bulky looking.

Examples of timber flush (left) and “lipped” casement windows. The “lipped” casement’s opening vent sits proud of the frame. The flush opening casement sits flush within the frame.

Wooden windows would often have a much more pleasing finish than a uPVC window, which at the time, would inevitably look like the smooth white plastic it was. Over years, the clean white finish would often fade, and take on a more grubby looking appearance.

Even the introduction of so-called “woodgrain effect foils” some time ago now, simply looked like a uPVC window pretending to be wood. It didn’t help that these foils were only available in a limited colour range – including the rather tangoed-tones of “golden oak” and the 80s inspired mahogany rosewood, neither of which looked anything like a genuine stained wooden window.

Example of an oriel bay window in the classic orange tones of Golden Oak, with dummy sashes throughout (so that all the leads line up). Does it look like wood? Not really.

uPVC windows may have been maintenance free with better thermal and security properties, but they were no match aesthetically for their wooden counterparts.

The problem was actually quite simple: that a uPVC window is constructed differently to a timber window. And until the construction of a uPVC window could match that of a timber window, it was never going to cut the mustard.

Finally some innovative companies began to push the boundaries in design and manufacture, producing windows and doors that included genuine timber aesthetics with improved woodgrain foils and traditional ironmongery. These windows, now usually marketed as “timber replacement” led the way in revolutionising the window industry. Consequently today we now have products that much more closely resemble the handcrafted qualities of genuine timber windows, but with none of the maintenance issues – the very best of both worlds!

Deceuninck Heritage flush casement window in English Oak with 90° timber effect corner welds and traditional pewter handles and stays. Does it look like wood? Yes it does!

Here at Ruislip Windows, we have not one, not two but THREE different Flush systems that we can offer our customers – the Heritage Flush from Deceuninck, The Rio from Rehau and our premium windows from the Residence Collection.

Residence 9 Flush casement window in light oak with 90° timber effect corner welds and ovolo putty horizontal Georgian bar. Does it look like wood? Yes it does!

Find out more about our Flush casement windows here and download the brochures from our website:

Want to know more technical details about our Flush casement windows? Then give us a call on (020) 8868 1133 or drop us an email – we look forward to hearing from you soon! 🙂

 

The Guardian Warm Roof

Re-invent your existing conservatory with one of our super fully insulated solid roofs by market leader Guardian.

 

THE PROBLEM
If you already have a conservatory, you’ll know how the outside temperature and weather conditions can effect the overall comfort of your room and how it’s used. If you’ve inherited an older conservatory through a house move for example, you may find that it’s an unusable space during the winter or hot summer spells. A common remark we hear is that “my conservatory is too hot during the summer and far too cold in winter.” A new Guardian Warm Roof could therefore be the perfect solution for you.

THE SOLUTION
The Guardian Warm Roof is a revolutionary step forward in home improvement – a high performance, lightweight roof system that has been designed to replace your existing glass or polycarbonate roof or be installed as an alternative on your new conservatory.

INSTALLATION BY RUISLIP WINDOWS. BEFORE: Glass conservatory roof with decorative cresting. AFTER: New Guardian Warm Roof installed – a complete transformation!

Fully tested and approved to all thermal and structural standards, the Guardian roof is a high performance insulated roof system comprising of a pre-engineered lightweight frame, two layers of rigid insulation board, internal insulated plasterboard, exterior grade plywood and a vapour membrane. Altogether this creates a more thermally efficient living space than your existing conservatory, keeping the warm air out in the summer and preventing the heat from escaping in the winter.

  • The solid roof will help you to maintain a consistent interior temperature.
  • Your room will be quiet and comfortable all year round.
  • Your new room can now be fully integrated into your ground floor living area.
  • It will give you the extra space you have always wanted.

Designed to retain the conservatory’s original windows, doors, frames and walls, the Guardian Warm Roof System is fully tested and approved to all thermal and structural standards.

(1): Choice of tile finishes. (2): Membrane. (3): Exterior grade plywood. (4): 25mm high performance insulation. (5) 40mm high performance insulation. (6): Timber battens. (7): 72mm high performance insulated plasterboards. (8): Rafter.

By removing your old conservatory roof and replacing it with a new insulated tiled roof, you’ll completely change the appearance of the rear of your home and garden. Now your conservatory will more closely resemble a proper extension and by choosing tiles that match your house you’ll be getting all the benefits of a ground floor extension along with the convenience and style of a conservatory.

If you’d like more details about the Guardian Warm Roof system and how you could transform your existing conservatory, download our PDF brochure here >> or contact us to discuss your requirements in more detail. We’re here to help! 🙂

Double glazing -v- triple glazing: what’s the best option?

Triple-glazing is often marketed as a better option than double-glazing, especially when it comes to thermal insulation. But is this really the case?

 

If you look at the websites of the big nationals for instance, you could be forgiven for wondering why so many companies are still even selling double glazing when triple glazing appears to be so much better at insulation and soundproofing your home! Here we attempt to debunk many of the myths that surround triple glazing, and clarify the facts to help you make an informed decision that’s right for you.

Example of a triple glazed sealed unit and a double glazed sealed unit.

While it’s true that triple-glazing does offer some benefits, it may not be the best or most economic solution for you.

Triple glazing is a better insulator for your home than double glazing.
The energy performance of windows is measured in U-Values. Lower U-values = a more energy efficient window. Traditional single glazed windows can have a U value in excess of 5. Building Regulations now stipulate that modern double glazing should have a U-value of no less than 1.6.

U-Values for older double glazing used to be much higher. However in recent years the manufacturing process has been greatly improved to provide much more energy efficient units. These improvements have been brought about by the introduction of wider cavities between the two glass panes, low-emissivity coatings being added to the glass to stop heat escaping (glass such as Pilkington K or Planitherm Softcoat Total), the cavity being filled with an inert gas (usually argon) and the use of warm-edge spacer bars (instead of aluminium).

Triple-glazing enables window manufacturers to achieve U-values of 1.0 and lower. So yes, triple glazing can enhance heat retention.  But such U-values are really only of benefit when they are installed into an overall energy saving build, such as in a low energy house or a “passive house”.  Where windows are being fitted into a standard build or as part of a refurbishment project then sealed units offering U-values as low as 1.1 are preferable and easily achievable with double glazing.

With the exception of perhaps the northern reaches of Scotland, the rest of the UK is simply not cold enough to warrant the use of triple glazing. Scandinavian countries such as Iceland, Sweden, Norway, Finland and other far northern countries use triple glazing because temperatures such as -20° C can be quite frequent. Highly energy efficient windows and doors, triple and sometimes quadruple-glazed are absolutely necessary to help reinforce the fabric of the buildings against the cold.

As far as the UK is concerned, there are many who argue that triple glazing simply doesn’t make sense in our climate. It is more costly to produce, produces much heavier sections and has an embodied energy approximately 50% higher than double glazing. Why would home owners pay more when good double glazed windows would easily tick the box?

Triple glazing is a better sound insulator than double glazing.
One of the biggest selling points of triple glazing has been its ability to reduce noise and outdoor sound. The thickness of the glass used is one of the three key elements of the sound insulation. Different thicknesses of glass will block a different frequency, so a combination of panes of varying thickness is more effective at keeping noise out. This is known as asymmetrical glazing. However, (and somewhat ironically!) most fabricators currently appear to offer triple glazed units with standardised cavities and glass thicknesses.

The second key element is the size of the gap between the panes. The larger the gap, the better the overall sound insulation effect. Finally the use of an acoustical resistant gas to augment or replace the inert gas (usually argon) will effectively help reflect noise away.

If sound insulation is important to you then it would be worth considering acoustic glass sealed units (such as Pilkington Optiphon or St Gobain’s acoustic glass, both of which are laminates) or even secondary double glazing instead. Secondary glazing will have a much greater air gap than can be achieved in triple glazing, and can achieve great noise reduction at considerably less cost.

In conclusion – For

  • Triple-glazing offers low U-values suited to specific low-energy and “passive house” projects and can return the value of your investment when fitted as part of these specifications.
  • If asymmetrical glazing is used together with acoustic glass, some noise reduction can be achieved.

In conclusion – Against

  • Higher cost.
  • Reduced light penetration due to additional layer of glass.
  • Minimal savings in energy bills in comparison to the higher cost.
  • Benefits such as noise reduction and solar control can be included in double-glazing for less than the cost of a standard triple-glazed unit.
  • Overall greater weight than a double glazed unit could pose problems for your windows – sashes dropping can be an issue.

Please do not hesitate to contact us for any further information. We look forward to hearing from you and hope to see you soon! 🙂

Door dilemma: composite -v- uPVC – what’s the difference?

Doors have come on a long way in recent years, but it’s the subtle new features that can make a big aesthetic difference to your home.

 

So what is the difference between a composite door and a uPVC panel door?

COMPOSITE DOORS
Quite simply, composite doors are designed to look like a painted wooden door. They are a single door with an outer frame and a threshold. You can have a choice of colours both inside and outside. Visually, a composite door looks much more like a traditional wooden door.

Two examples of composite doors with sidelights. Smooth white uPVC outer frames and coloured wood effect traditional style composite doors.

uPVC DOORS
These come in two main options, either with a full panel (usually decorative) or they can have a midrail so the door can have a half panel at the bottom and glazing at the top. For panel doors, essentially instead of having glass in the door you have a panel. With a resi door you also have an outer frame and threshold. Resi doors can come in smooth or woodgrain foiled finishes.

Two examples of uPVC resi doors with door panels. LEFT: Half panelled door in oak effect foiled resi with midrail and decorative panel to lower section and matching glazed sidelight. RIGHT: Full panelled resi with decorative cottage style panel in smooth white.

In our opinion, panelled doors are a more cost effective solution but composite doors are much better looking!

One of the most obvious differences between a composite and a panelled door is the look of the panel. Despite much improvement over the years, panels still have a somewhat “moulded plastic” look about them. And because the panel is fitted into the door, you have a somewhat heavy framed look, almost a “door within a door” look. Sometimes you can see a gasket line between the actual door and the panel itself, too. Composite doors generally have a much better aesthetic overall.

A contemporary panelled door in black/brown with sidelights. Panelled doors have improved greatly in recent years – this example is stylish and modern. But because the panel is fitted into the door, you have a heavy framed aesthetic which looks almost like a “door within a door”.

HOW DO THEY COMPARE ON PRICE?
A panelled door is more cost effective than a composite, so if you are on a tight budget and really want that new front door then the panelled option might allow you to do this. To be perfectly honest though, we would always recommend you opt for a good composite front door if you can, even if it means having to wait a while. Many customers get their windows replaced and then will have a new front door installed the following year or a few months later.

HALF PANELLED DOORS
These are more popular than a full panelled door and depending on the choice of panel, can actually look quite stylish. Panels are available in a range of colours with either flat or decorative options and are a cost effective choice for both front and back doors.

Half panelled doors. LEFT: Smart looking resi with midrail in Irish oak foil. Decorative moulded panel to lower section, glazed with leaded stained glass to top section. Gold lever handle and letterplate. RIGHT: Smooth white resi with midrail. Decorative moulded panel to lower section, glazed in obscure glass to top section. Complementary sidelights. White lever handle and letterplate.

THE YALE-STYLE RIM LATCH = KISS GOODBYE TO LEVER HANDLES ON YOUR COMPOSITE DOOR!
Multi-point locking doors have always been defined by their lever handles, there’s been no getting away from the fact; the handle is used to engage the multi-point locking system. Traditional wooden doors would have a Yale (or similar style) rim latch lock, where you would pull the door shut when you left the house. Now stylish escutcheon multi-point rim latch locks are available for composite doors. Operated with a thumb-turn mechanism from the inside, which activates the multi-lock when you are in the house, these new locks are the perfect answer for a modern, maintenance-free traditional style front door.

Yale-style rim latch locks are now a popular choice on composite doors. Unlike a Yale lock though, the rim latch acts as a multi-point lock, securing the door into the frame at a number of points upon closure. Operated by a simple thumb-turn mechanism on the interior of the door, the multi-lock is engaged as soon as the door is shut (known as a slam-shut). This is the Winkhaus Heritage multi-lock which is available on our Hurst composite doors. Quick, simple, secure.

Still not sure which to choose? Why not get some expert advice and give us a call on (020) 8868 1133 – we will be more than happy to talk you through all the different options available to you.

We hope to hear from you soon! 🙂