6 steps to timber heaven – what to think about when selecting timber windows and doors
Planning and creating your own build is an exciting and challenging thing that will stretch you, test your patience and ultimately reward you (that’s the plan anyway!).
If you have decided to opt for timber windows and doors for your project, there are a wealth of choices, designs and manufacturers not to mention types of glazing, ironmongery and finishes to consider.
Here Dale’s Sales Director Richard Chapman offers an insight into some of the key things you need to think about if you are opting for timber windows and doors.
- Do Your Homework – When it comes to windows and doors, you are dealing with the fundamental fabric of the building so it really is worth doing your homework. People can spend months considering what kitchen and bathroom style they want – so give the windows and doors the same level of attention to detail. There are a lot of styles available and you need to think carefully about what will work for you – not just from an aesthetic perspective but on a practical and performance level. They may largely look the same but what goes into a timber window and door compared to another can be completely different.
- Think Style – Consider the style of the building you are looking to create and match the windows to that and to the spec of the build as well. Don’t over spec where there is no need. You don’t need to go for the very highest quality windows if you are building an occasional use garden room. A modern build will naturally suit a contemporary style, whilst a period style property – either refurb or new build is more likely to lend itself to sash windows. But like anything, you get what you pay for so if it is going to be your main residence, the home of your dreams, then the windows and doors need to reflect that.
- Location, Location, Location – It is vitally important to consider the location of your build. For example if you are building in an exposed location – on top of a moor or by the sea –, then you should think about performance aspects of the windows and doors. Consider a higher spec glass and look at the option of aluminium cladding on the exterior of the timber which will add an even tougher exterior or go for a storm proof window. Forget old wives tales and preconceived ideas about sash windows banging and rattling in the wind. Today’s modern materials and manufacturing technologies make sash a beautifully stylish, high performance window to opt for.
- Knock, Knock – When it comes to doors, think carefully about what’s going to work best for the way you live as well as how they look. Apart from main entrance doors (and what colour it is going to be), your thoughts should be focused on door set options – French doors over patio doors over bi-fold. Bi-folds have become extremely popular, and give great access when fully open. But remember that bi-folds have more vertical obstructions when closed compared to French and Patio.
- Make life easier for yourself – Go for window and door options that are factory finished, made to measure, to your specifications and that arrive on site fully finished and ready to fit and enjoy. Do you really want to be having to prime and paint and glaze timber frames? Good quality, factory finished timber windows and doors are also likely to have additional qualities such as guarantees on the timber, hardware and the paint finishes. Look for a manufacturer that can offer you 30 year guarantees for rot and fungal infection, 8 years on paint finishes and 10 years on double glazed units and hardware.
- Set the Standard – Ensure the project manager or builder you employ is working to the standards you set. Don’t allow him to choose the timber windows and doors without discussing it and you knowing exactly what he is suggesting. You are unlikely to let him choose your bathroom or kitchen so why do the same with windows and doors? Quality is the key and when it comes to timber, you get what you pay for.
For more information and advice on timber windows and doors visit www.dalewindows.co.uk or call them on 0845 652 7399.