With approximately 93% of homes in the UK having some form of double glazing, it has become a popular way to keep heat in and noise out.
While installing double glazing has plenty of benefits, it’s also very expensive to install initially – this has resulted in a number of Government-led schemes aiming to drive down the cost for those who need it most.
This guide will talk you through what double glazing is, and the schemes that could be useful for you and your family.
What Is Double Glazing?
Many homeowners opt for double glazing as it has plenty of benefits. Whereas regular windows have a single pane of glass, double glazing consists of two glass panes with a small gap between them that is then filled with insulating gas.
This prevents air from circulating properly between the two panes, slowing convection down and greatly benefitting the home in both winter and summer.
Double Vs triple glazing
As the name suggests, where double glazing has two panes of glass, triple glazing has three. But isn’t double glazing enough? In most cases, the answer is yes.
Triple glazing offers all the benefits of double glazing but takes it a step further with things like heat retention and noise reduction. This means that if you live anywhere particularly noisy, like near a train line or motorway, triple glazing is probably a better option for your home, although, as you can imagine, it is far more expensive than double glazing.
Benefits of Double Glazing
Whilst your home may not be in an area that is eligible for free Government glazing, if you find that your home struggles to retain heat, then it might be a good idea to consider getting double glazing for your home. The benefits of double glazing include:
Where a single pane of glass makes it incredibly easy for outside noise to make its way into your home, adding a second pane of glass in the form of double glazing will definitely reduce the amount of noise that you hear from within your home.
Great for Insulation
Double glazing also has the ability to help your home retain heat – this is often the primary reason that people opt for double glazing. When summer comes, an extra glass panel can also reduce the amount of light streaming into the home, keeping your home cooler and reducing the possibility of UV light fading your furniture.
Single pane windows can accidentally lead to excess moisture building up and causing rot and mildew on the frame. Having the extra level of glazing will prevent this in most cases, ensuring that condensation does not lead to mould in your home.
Cheaper Energy Bills
Because of the reasons already discussed, including heat retention and light blocking, having double glazing will result in you using less energy to heat or cool your home. This will, in turn, reduce your energy bills, saving you a vast amount of money over your lifetime.
Because it has an extra panel, making it stronger, double glazing is a well-known deterrent for intruders, making it far more difficult for people to break into your home.
Increased Property Value
Due to all these great benefits of double glazing, it can be a really attractive selling point for buyers, which will often result in a higher resale value if you decide to sell your home. Alternatively, it’s often worth making sure your new home has double glazing, as it can be expensive to install yourself.
Check out our complete guide on the price of new windows, if you want a rough idea of how much you can expect to pay (including installation). You can also read about the various window styles available, as well as double glazing, triple glazing and decorative windows.
The UK Government have previously offered a scheme which allows those who are eligible to have their windows and doors in the following rooms replaced with double glazing:
- Living area/reception rooms
- Dining room
- Studies and office spaces
Replacements are simple, carried out like for like. For example, if your windows are uPVC framed windows, you will not be able to get timber bay windows on the Government scheme.
Acoustic ventilation units will also be fitted on the windows, which will allow you to keep your home ventilated without the need to open a window.
These windows will be guaranteed for at least 25 years, whilst wall vents and extraction units have 15 years guaranteed, and seals for 10. Although it’s unlikely, any faults should be reported to the supplier who will repair them for free.
Who is eligible for free double glazing?
This particular scheme was originally offered to those who lived near major A roads in order to reduce noise levels. This scheme isn’t currently running, but it’s worth emailing [email protected] if you think you should have been eligible before 31st March 2019.
Home Repairs Assistance Grant
This is a scheme that’s open to those who are considered to have extreme needs. Those who are eligible include:
- Pensioners aged 60 or older
- Those who are older than 18 and currently receive one of these benefits: Income Based Jobseeker’s Allowance, Income Support, Housing Benefit, Pension Credit, or Working Tax Credit
- Over 18’s who have a disability or receive Disability Living Allowance, Attendance Allowance, or Long Term Incapacity Benefit
If you are eligible, you could receive up to £5,000 towards your double glazing, which could actually cover the whole home, depending on the type of windows and the size of the property.
Green Homes Grant
The UK Government first introduced the Green Homes Grant in July 2020. Although it was meant to run through to 2022, they’ve discontinued it now. But, if you have vouchers from the grant, it’s worth checking the expiry date so that you can definitely redeem your double glazing.
The vouchers cover different types of insulation, double glazing on your home, as well as energy-efficient doors that help to regulate heat all year round.
Free Double Glazing Summary
Whilst your options are limited, there are a few ways in which you can get free double glazing from the Government, mainly through the Home Repairs Assistant Grant.
Unless you are a pensioner or have a disability, most schemes are currently unavailable, but it’s worth keeping an eye out just in case they return in the future as they can save you lots of money.