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Jersey Consumer Council

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Buying Replacement Windows

October 27, 2015 Consumer Skills No Comments
windows

Buying Replacement Windows

Buying replacement windows for your home is a big investment. If you’re planning to sell your house, they may increase the value. Replacing windows can also mean you opt for double glazing which can cut your energy costs, reduce noise from traffic, and improve the security of your home.

Before you decided to purchase any windows, visit the supplier showroom and have a look at the windows. Make a note of your requirements and what you are looking for in a new window.

For example some points to consider

  • Appearance – What does the window look like? Will it match your other windows?
  • Operation – How does the window work? Is it easy to use?
  • Cleaning – Is it easy to clean? Is it practical to clean?
  • Service – Are parts available easily if something were to break? How expensive are these parts? Which parts can you get?
  • Warranties – Is there a warranty? How long does the warranty last? What does the warranty cover?
  • Glass selection – Can you get double-glazing? How much more would it cost? Are there different glass options?
  • Finish – sea air and water can have a detrimental effect on your window frames make sure that your new ones are resistant to the elements

Top Tips

  • Get quotes in writing for the whole procedure including the labour, parts and removal of your old windows etc. Get 2 or 3 and then compare the prices. Make sure that it is a quote not an estimate.
  • Don’t act on the quote you want straight away. Think about whether or not it is right for you and try to negotiate the price.
  • Make sure you have a clear idea of which windows you would like and how they will be fitted. Ask lots of questions when at the showroom to ensure what you think is being offered is really what you will be receiving; frame style, glass thickness, opening mechanisms, locks, insurance company approved etc Make sure that these agreed specifications are detailed in the quotation; for example the finish, colour , coating, type of glass, thickness, opening ad closing etc
  • Ask friends and family who they would recommend and why. Check references for the person they recommend and get out their previous work if possible.
  • Confirm with the company regarding skills and qualifications to undertake the work – check out if they are paid up members of a trade association and what protection this affords you
  • Ask about all the different types of glass and which would suit your house the best.
  • Check the warranty and make sure it suits you.
  • Have you checked the contract? What are the terms and conditions and in your view do you feel that they are fair and reasonable?
  • You may be asked to part pay prior to the work starting. Consider you payment methods; if the contract value for the whole project is between £100 – £30,000 it would be prudent to pay an element of the costs on your credit card which affords you additional protection if there should be any problems. Shop around for finance – you can choose which finance provider you use and we recommend that you check to see if they are signed up to the Jersey Code of Consumer Lending gov.je/tradingstandards/consumerlending

Why Change your Windows?

Although you may like some new windows, it is a big investment and should be done when really necessary. These could be some of the reasons:

  • Your feel a draft in cold weather and too hot in warm weather.
  • Your heating and/or cooling bills are expensive and continuing to rise.
  • You’re concerned about the security of your windows.
  • Your existing windows are faded, making your house look out-dated.
  • Your windows are difficult or impossible to close or open.
  • Your existing windows require constant work and repairs.
  • You’re planning to sell your house and want to increase the value.

Most windows can be repaired relatively easily and so it may be better to fix your current windows instead of buying new ones. In some cases, there are some major problems that will stop you from being able to fix your current windows. These include:

  • Rot
  • Bent or worn hinges
  • Fog between double-paned glass
  • Hard to find replacement hardware

Contact details

Trading Standards Service including the Consumer Advisory Service

Address

9-3 Central Market
St Helier
JE2 4WL
Tel: 448160
Email: tradingstandards@gov.je
Website: www.gov.je/tradingstandards


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