The pros and cons of double glazing

by | Sep 18, 2013 | Doors & Windows

Double glazed windows consist of two panes of glass installed in a common frame. The cavity between the panes is filled with an inert gas. The combination of double panes of glass and the gas give more than twice the insulation qualities that a single bane would. The sealed unit is airtight.

What advantages do double glazed windows have?

Double glazed windows have the following advantages:

1. Energy and cost savings: The airtight construction of a double-glazed window creates a natural thermal insulation barrier. This layer of insulation reduces the flow of cold air coming through the glass from the outside and the flow of warm air going out, from the inside. As a result of this barrier, less energy is needed to heat the space and to keep it at the assigned temperature. This reduced energy consumption results in lower energy bills.

2. When a third or even a fourth layer of glass is added the increase in insulation adds significantly to the value of the window as an energy conserver. As heat transfers from one cavity to the nest, it is trapped between the layers.

3. Limits condensation: When moisture comes into contact with a cold surface, condensation forms in the guise of water drops, these drops freeze into ice. This layer of ice cools the room, forcing the occupants to raise the temperature to maintain the comfort level. The air in the cavity between the two glass panes, as well as the effective seal, prevents the accumulation of condensation by providing a barrier against the cold air from the outside.

4. Sound insulation: The double-glazed unit provides a barrier between the inside and the ambient noise outside the building.

5. Safety: Double glazed windows are much tougher to break than their single pane counterparts, thus giving them a security advantage. They are sealed into the frame considerably tighter than a single pane of glass, which also makes it harder to break them from the inside.

6. Reduces furniture damage: As the double glazing has a tendency to reduce the amount of direct sunlight that can enter the home, this can be beneficial in protecting your paintings, fabrics, wooden furniture and carpet.

What are the disadvantages of double glazing?

Double glazed windows in Esher have the following disadvantages:

1. Can’t be repaired: if the seal between the two panes of glass isn’t absolutely air-tight condensation will form between the panes. Once sealed and evacuated, the seal cannot be repaired, the panes simply cannot be taken apart, resealed and replaced.

2. Heat trap: In the winter, the heat that double glazing traps in the home is advantageous, however, in the summer the room may become stuffy and uncomfortable. To combat this, the glass can be tinted to block the heat.

Other than that, double glazing is not the ideal match as a replacement window in an older home with period windows.


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