Georgian Windows Secondary Glazing or Alternatives

1 Mar 2011
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United Kingdom
I'm taking a canter around the feasibility of some work on a Grade II listed house, and I'm trying to get a handle on making Georgian sash windows liveable.

What ways are available to do it?

I'm aware of thin-void double glazed units, which would replace panes inside the old glazing bars, however, there are still quite significant amounts of plain Georgan glass present - like drumskins - and I'm reluctant to destroy them.

I'm also not keen to put really major money into anything which will last less than 30-50 years.

I have 18 such windows (including 6 in a pair of bays) with a total of almost 200 window panes). The sizes are roughly 1.5m high by 0.9m wide, with 3x4 smaller panes in each, divided into 2 vertically sliding sashes.

Usually we have just used large panes of toughened glass attached to the inside of each sash for the winter months with mirror hinges; that works well but is not what is expected amongst some who buy these houses (wimps!) :).

My key question: is there an effective, elegant, usable, way of doing secondary glazing, and what sort of costs am I looking at?

I accept that I may lose my beloved windows seats, but I think I need to do something to bring the property up to modern comfort levels. We're also looking at air-sourced heat pumps and other things, which all seem much more affordable than last time round 30 years ago.

This is very preliminary, and I'd love to hear any ideas.


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A quick conversation with one or two suppliers suggests that lifespan of double glazed units will be the problem, and high costs of having them fitted, rather than purchase cost.

I can't find any double glazed units with a suggested reliable 'normal' lifespan of even 20 years.

Which takes it back to the old story - back to low-tec for long-term and a skilled local little man to do the work as when he is free.


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