Choosing Sash Windows for a Period Home

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Traditional-style homes are hugely popular with those looking for a great renovation project and the chance to breathe new life into a tired or neglected period home.

When it comes to properties like this, there are numerous features that all work together to preserve the historic character of the building. But along with that historic charm comes the need to maintain, repair or replace those original features over time.

If the sash windows need maintenance, repair or replacement, it is wise to consider the following to ensure you retain the historic character and charm that makes period homes such a joy.

1. What is the Condition of the Existing Windows?

This assessment is the essential first step. Have a good look at the existing windows:

  • Are they draughty?
  • Are there signs of rot?
  • Is there damage to the woodwork from wear and tear or exposure to the elements?
  • Do they rattle?
  • Are they stiff to operate?

Once you have identified the issues, you can come up with a plan of attack.

2) Do You Need to Repair or Replace?

Before you consider replacement, it is worth noting that many original sash window ailments can actually be repaired.

  • Decaying timber can be removed and replaced with new timber.
  • Rattles and draughts can be treated with an effective draught-proofing system, which can also work to improve the energy-efficiency of your home, thus reducing your heating bills.
  • Secondary glazing can be discreetly added to prevent noise ingress and dramatically reduce heat loss.

If your original sash windows are beyond repair or if it does not make financial sense, then a replacement option will be required.

3) Historical Integrity

If your sash window(s) need replacing, then it is vital that you replace on a like-for-like basis. There is nothing worse than a period home that’s character has been lost by the addition of an incongruous style window. Poorly chosen replacements could also knock value off the property and might also mean that you are contravening planning laws.

All of these factors need to be considered to ensure that you make the right choice for your home:

  • materials — depending on your home’s heritage, timber or metal windows are much more in-keeping than modern plastic options
  • proportions
  • position (in the case of adding new windows where there previously were none)
  • window furniture
  • glazing

It pays to do your own research into your home’s history, but it is essential to also seek expert advice from those experienced in renovating and replacing sash windows in period homes to ensure you achieve the best result possible.

4) Is your Property Listed?

If your property is listed or located in a Conservation area, then it is likely you will need to consult your local planning office and conservation officer before work begins, especially if you plan on replacing windows on the principal elevation. You may need to apply for planning permission or listed building consent.

5) Understand Maintenance Requirements

Regular maintenance can keep your sash windows working properly and effectively, as well as looking their best, for as long as possible.

Call Ventrolla on 0808 301 9648 or visit the website for more information and to enquire about a free window survey.

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