Replace or repair wooden casement windows in period property

9 Jun 2012
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United Kingdom
I own a detached property built in 1935.
It has wooden georgian pane casement windows. These are in generally good condition with a few localised areas of rotten wood.
The windows do let in some draughts but are watertight and certainly repairable.
I have been told that installing UPVC windows would put off some buyers, particularly as they would detract from the appearance of the property (wrong profiles, etc). This advice came from 2 local estate agents.
I had found a company called Evolution Windows that does manufacture convincing georgian pane upvc windows but following a survey by a local agent for the company it appears that the windows are not as 'deep' as the wooden windows and therefore any gaps inside the property would need to be filled by UPVC joining strips. The property is rendered and therefore there would have to be some external repairs as well as the sills are different to the wooden windows.
Taking all of this into account it therefore looks as though repair and draughtproofing is the best option.
I have had a visit from 'The Joinery Workshop' who spent 2 hours surveying the windows. They seemed keen to recommend double glazing the existing units with slimline units. I am not sure about this.
The draughtproofing alternative envolves routing into the casements and installing draughtproofing beading.
Has anyone else on this forum faced a similar decision and if so what route did you take?
Can anyone recommend a period window restoration service that covers East Devon?
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I have recently moved into our home after spending 9 months doing fairly major work to it. One of the many jobs that needed done was sorting out the original sash windows. The house dates back to about 1895 and all the original sash windows and most of the original glass was still in place.

I made the decision very quickly to do all I could to maintain the original windows and that is what I have done and I am very very happy for having made this decision. There are a number of important factors to consider:

1. It is cheaper to recondition the original windows than replace.
2. The original windows are much better made than anything you will buy now.
3. The originals will look much better than anything that you can buy now. They will have been designed with the rest of the house in mind.
4. If properly reconditioned and draught proofed then they will work as well as new windows.
5. If properly looked after they will last for much longer than the 10 years you will be lucky to get out of plastic ones.

As you will see I am a fan of the originals and I am so glad that I have kept ours. We had windows in varying states of disrepair - none of them would open and many were rotten in places. We got a local joiner who spent approx 3-4 weeks repairing them. He stripped them, filled any would we're needed and replaces any sections that were needed. He replaced all cords and added a new draught proof system. There were 5 windows Were the sash were beyond repair and so he built new sash sections for these and as these were being replaced we added double glazing to the sash but this required no change to the original frames. All in we paid £150 per window for recondition and draught proof and this included complete redecoration. The new hardwood sash's and DG unit were £250 each.

I also had a number of wooden casement units replaced and reconditioned. Where I had to replace the entire windows I used DG and had the frames reconditioned. Simpler and cheaper than the sash windows and definitely cheaper than brand new windows I totality. My joiner was easily able to replace the actual windows and frames and use DG where required without having to do anything to the frames.

Bottom line is every day when I look at our neighbours house that is identical bar the PVC windows I am so happy we kept the originals. They are so much more elegant. There are no draughts and in Feb when we moved in and when it was cold I found them no worse that DG PVC units we had in our previous property.

There will be good local joiners that will do a great job for you just take some time to hunt around.

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