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No matter the room or property size, the best windows have the power to make us feel less confined and more in-tune with the outside world. Providing an essential route for light, air, and sound to flow through, it’s likely the extra time spent at home has highlighted that your windows are not as efficient or attractive as they should be.

From essential security to energy savings to aesthetics, this concise window buying guide is packed full of top tips to find the perfect window style.

What to look out for when buying windows?

  • A long-lasting window material, e.g. timber, composite, aluminium, steel replacement, uPVC, timber alternative
  • The latest multi-point locking mechanisms
  • Made to measure designs & limitless customisation options
  • Heat retention qualities e.g. A++ to C energy ratings / U-values of 1.6W/m²K or lower
  • Glazing and glass options e.g. double glazing / triple glazing / toughened / stained / privacy
  • Minimal maintenance
  • Tested to industry standards for performance & weather resistance
  • External noise reducing qualities
  • A long-lasting insurance backed warranty, covering the product & installation
  • Will the window style let in enough light?
  • Will the window style add value & kerb appeal?
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Slim aluminium window

What’s the best material for replacement windows?

You may well be wondering what is the strongest window material? Or maybe you’re more interested in what type of windows last the longest… There is no ‘one size fits all’ when it comes to quality window replacements, especially if you’re situated in a restrictive conservation area.

With this in mind, we’ve put together this convenient window comparison table to help you weigh up the pros and cons according to your project:

Composite Windows Aluminium Windows Steel Replica Windows uPVC Windows Timber Alternative Windows
Security High High High High High High
Colours Limitless range of paints and stains 29 colours Limitless RAL Colour options Limitless RAL Colour options Limitless RAL Colour options Limitless RAL Colour options
Energy Efficient
(rating / U-value)
A / 1.6 A++ / 0.87 A / 1.6 A 1.6


1.4 (minimum) A+13 / 1.3 (minimum)
Glazing Double Double/triple Double/triple Double Double/triple Double/triple
Decorative/specialist glazing available Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
Weather resistance High High High High High High
Size capability Medium - large Medium Large Large Medium Medium
Weight Heavy Medium Lightweight Lightweight Light Light
Guaranteed Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
Pricing bracket Medium - high Medium Medium - high Medium - high Low - medium Medium
Lifespan Lifetime 40 - 50 years 40-50 years 40-50 years 20 – 30 years 20 – 30 years
Classic Westcoast Windows
Windows & Doors Showroom Esher

What are the styles of windows?

Now you understand the differences between the various window materials available, you need to decide which window style is the most appropriate to complement your properties unique aesthetics as well as your lifestyle.

  • Casement windows
    Side opening hinges, most energy efficient window style.
  • Sliding sash windows
    Time-honoured heritage inspired sightlines, enhanced with modern technology offering the best ventilation and airflow.
  • Flush sash windows
    Opening sash sits flat & flush with the frame, mimics classic timber window aesthetics.
  • Slimline windows
    Ideal for modern architectural developments, contemporary slimline aluminium windows provide the perfect replacement for ageing steel windows too.

Depending on the window style, you can choose from various opening configurations, e.g. side opening, top opening, bottom opening, inward or outward opening.

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What is the best window security & how do you protect windows from burglars?

Security features highly when it comes to upgrading your windows. For complete peace of mind that your family is safe and sound, look out for the following to be sure that your new windows remain burglar-proof far into the future:

  • Multi-point locking systems that have at least 3 locking points
    (Windows with 8 or more locking points will offer the best defences)
  • PAS 24:2012 security certification
  • Bi-directional key lockable handles & opening restrictors
  • Laminated/toughened glass options
  • Lockable night vents
  • Internally beaded window glazing
  • Warp & twist resistance
  • Steel-reinforced frames (uPVC)
  • Hinge-side security brackets (uPVC)
  • Egress hinges aka fire escape hinges (casement windows)
uPVC vertical sliding sash window hardware
Light blue uPVC flush sash windows

Window security in the spotlight

If your windows are lacking essential modern-day security features, you may also be interested in the following blogs:

Steel framed windows vs the aluminium alternative – why we choose the lighter, sleeker alternative

7 Reasons to Consider Evolution’s Timber Effect Windows

Modern window & door ideas for your Surrey home

P & P Glass Latest News

What makes an energy efficient window?

Energy efficiency ranks highly amongst the reasons for replacing window frames and glazing. Each window material that we offer is handpicked with optimum thermal efficiency in mind. Reduce energy bills, draughts, noise, and your households overall environmental impact by looking out for these energy efficient new window essentials:

  • A multicoloured BFRC energy rating label
  • U-values of 1.6W/m²K or lower – any higher and your new double glazed windows will not comply with the latest energy efficient requirements set out by Building Regulations.*
    The lower the U-value the more energy efficient your new windows will be!
  • A++ to C energy ratings
  • Polyamide thermal breaks (aluminium windows)
  • Unique aluminium & timber construction (composite windows)
  • Triple glazed possibilities
  • FSC certification (wooden windows sourced from sustainable forests & easily recycled)
  • Locally sourced windows can reduce your carbon footprint, by reducing fuel use and time.

*correct at time of publishing; January 2021.

Here’s how & why to choose eco-friendly replacement windows

Green timber flush sash windows installation
Grey uPVC flush sash window

What colour do windows come in?

For those wondering is it worth getting new windows, it’s important to note that giving your home’s façade a makeover has the power to increase its value by up to 10%. And thanks to advances in window manufacturing methods, there are many more window colours to choose from other than the standard white or natural woodgrain frames of yesteryear. From charming bungalows on the outskirts of Guildford to contemporary detached homes in Wimbledon, it’s essential to choose a window style, shade and finishing touches that will complement your South East properties unique character. Every little change adds up to a big difference, so don’t forget to look out for:

  • Limitless RAL colour options
  • Dual colour options (different coloured frames internally & externally)
  • Coloured uPVC windows
  • Wood effect finishes
  • Anti-fade technology
  • Quality microporous paints and stains (timber windows)
  • Powder coated or anodised treatments (aluminium windows)
  • Specialist heritage colour palettes
  • Modern window colours, e.g. Cream timber windows, white aluminium windows, grey uPVC windows.
  • Matching handles and hardware.

If your home is a listed building or located in a designated area, such as an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB), be sure to check whether you are permitted to upgrade your windows without applying for planning permission first. If you are unsure, contact your local planning authority, take a look at your property title deeds, or contact the P & P team for expert support and advice.

Why more modern homes are choosing timber windows over uPVC

What is the average cost to replace windows?

The price of your new windows depends on a variety of conditions – in particular, the material, size, security hardware and specialist finishing touches needed. Made-to-measure to fulfil your diverse home improvement needs, if you're looking for the full renovation package why not familiarise yourself with our Homeowners Quick Door Buying Guide? Or request a free no-obligation quote now - to assist us with providing a cost, please feel free to upload photo(s) of your proposed project.

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