Can you replace double glazing panes?
If your windows are relatively new and causing you issues with draughts or energy efficiency, you’ll probably want to know whether or not you can replace double glazing panes as a budget-friendly solution or alternative to a complete replacement.
It’s worth stating that old or badly-installed frames could well be to blame if your home is losing heat, but if you are sure there is nothing wrong with your existing frames, there’s no reason why you shouldn’t be able to keep them and replace double glazing panes that are causing you problems in your home with insulation, efficiency and lighting.
Is it my glass or my frames?
There are simple ways to check if it’s your frames that are causing you problems or if you need to replace the double glazing panes.
1. Check your frames
Check whether air or light is getting through the frames using your hand, a lit candle or torch. You can also check for gaps in the seal (between the pane and the frame) with a simple bank card test.
Below is a video on “how to check for draughts in house” using the bank card test.
2. Checking your panes
Chips or cracks in the glass should be fairly easy to spot. Another tell-tale sign that it could be the window panes responsible is a build-up of condensation between the double glazing. If the gap between the two panes in not vacuum tight, then this can result in heat-loss and in some cases, you can experience draughts.
Once you’ve performed these tests you should have a good idea of what part of the window you need to address.
Why replace the panes and not the frames?
So, why would you want to replace double glazing panes and not the whole window frame?
Why replace the panes only
Well for starters replacing just the faulty or damaged glass is considerably cheaper. You can see our other infotmation on How much does it cost to replace a double pane window? Also, replace double glazing panes only is considerably quicker and less disruptive than a full window installation. Below is a demonstration on how to remove a window pane .
Why replace the entire window frames
Installing entirely new window frames can drastically improve the look of your entire home and give you additional benefits such as better home security, durability and weather resistance and added value.
Replacing the entire window frames will be more beneficial in the long term and provide the peace of mind that comes with an average 20-30 year lifespan. Replacing just the glass is probably a bad idea with old or fragile frames, which often won’t be weatherproof and generally won’t be fit-for-purpose.
It’s important to note that both options will ultimately improve the energy efficiency of your home, eradicate unwanted draughts and enable you to live comfortably with less central heating usage.
Factors which can impact the cost of a double glazing window replacement
The type of window, number of units and location of your windows will all affect the cost when you decide to replace double glazing panes and specialist double glazing fitter will be able to break down the detail of what you’re going to need to spend by factoring these things in and explaining them properly to you.
Naturally, larger windows will be more expensive to replace than smaller ones and the more windows there are to replace, the higher the final bill will be. In London and the South East, you can expect prices to be higher than elsewhere in the country in general. In these areas, and if you’re certain you don’t have any serious problems with your windows, you might decide to replace double glazing panes only as the most sensible option.
As with any home improvements, you should obtain a number of different quotes to compare. Remembering that the cheapest option is not always the best. You can expect to pay, on average, around £400-600 for a new window that will create a saving of around £120 a year on your energy bill.
So yes, it is possible to replace double glazing panes, but you should first decide whether that’s the best option for you by performing some of the checks and tests above and then, if you feel it’s necessary, speaking to double glazing professionals.