Top questions to ask your Cornwall window installer
If you’re thinking about getting new double glazed windows installed in your home, you’ll want to make sure you’re getting a good deal. And with so many providers promising the earth, it’s important to separate the wheat from the chaff.
Want to avoid bad products, overpayment, and poor installation? Here’s what you should ask your window installer, plus some red flags that you’re dealing with an untrustworthy company.
It’s important to do your research
You wouldn’t buy a new laptop, car, or any other big purchase without researching your options first. That would be a recipe for disaster. So, why are your new windows any different?
The thing is, while there’s lots of information about laptops and cars on useful comparison sites and detailed blogs about their specs, most people are in the dark when it comes to their windows. Unless you work in construction or have gone through the process of replacing your windows before, the internet can feel like a maze of insufficient information.
Quite reasonably, most people turn to the closest window company for guidance. But if you’re thinking about doing this, watch out! While they are the ‘professionals’, unless you cross-reference your information, you’re vulnerable to being swayed into overpaying for your windows or making the wrong product choice.
Though reputable window providers wouldn’t dream of doing this, there are some cowboy tradesmen out there who wouldn’t hesitate at an opportunity to make a quick buck or two.
Luckily, the solution is simple — do your research. Look into the going rate for window installation, read into the products you’re interested in, and don’t be afraid to chat to a few different companies.
How much will it cost?
Unprofessional providers won’t feel ashamed of inflating their prices if they sense you have no idea about the average cost of window installations. And while you can try to fake knowing your stuff, you’ll probably have a much better outcome if you just actually know your stuff.
If you sense that someone’s trying to squeeze some extra cash from you, instead of haggling, we recommend avoiding that company completely. If they’re trying to skimp from you now, who knows what cost-saving tricks they’ll pull when they come to install your windows.
We suggest using our prices as a guide, even if you aren’t local or looking to buy with us. Of course, prices will vary depending on your specific project and the complexity of the task at hand, but these are reliable estimates that you can keep in mind.
What’s the energy efficiency rating of your windows?
Double glazed windows are a no-brainer. They’re the green, energy-saving option. Plus, they keep your energy bills low, reduce noise from the street, and provide greater home security than single glazing.
Thankfully, double glazing is now the norm amongst reputable providers. For instance, we offer highly efficient A-rated double glazed glass as standard. If your prospective installer doesn’t, this is a bad sign.
If you want even more protection, ask your provider about triple glazing. Some window providers, like us, can even provide you with extra efficient Solar Elite glass. It’s 20% more insulative than A-rated double glazing, so worth considering!
Can I view the products before choosing?
If a provider doesn’t want you to see the windows they’re fitting, you need to ask yourself (and them!) — why? Not to be dramatic, but if this does happen to you, we say run a mile!
If your installer is proud of the windows they’re selling you, they should want to show off their work and tell you everything there is to know. You can’t see the quality of a product from a photo, so it’s always worthwhile visiting a showroom (Covid-permitting, of course).
Check to see whether your provider has a local showroom. If they do, they should have no issue with you viewing their products before making a purchasing decision.
How long does the installation take?
Unless you have lots and lots of windows that need replacing, getting new windows fitted shouldn’t be a huge job. You should be able to get your old windows taken out and replaced in a day. If an installer is telling you it will take much longer, this is a worrying sign. Ask them why and whether you’ll be paying them by the day!
Do you offer any finance options?
If a company offers finance options, then they’re probably doing good business (as they’re clearly not strapped for cash).
Allowing you to pay over time demonstrates that they’re probably not going to vanish into thin air anytime soon. They’re likely committed to doing good work and providing their customers with quality products that aren’t going to let them down as soon as the installation is complete.
Smaller companies (that are still perfectly reputable) might not offer finance, so don’t let this put you off if everything else about them seems great. Just make sure you research them thoroughly, check out their reviews, and importantly — get a receipt!
Do you have any accreditation? And what’s the guarantee on your products?
Check that your provider has been verified by at least one reputable trades body. For instance, we have accreditation from Certass. A company will usually display their accreditation logos on their website, but if you’re unsure, the Certass website also has its own verification tool.
Reputable companies with a track-record of providing quality products will usually offer a long, insurance-backed guarantee on their products and might be part of a joint warranty system like Quality Assured National Warranties. This is definitely something to look out for, as no company that knows their products are going to fail will be jumping to provide guarantees.
How secure are your windows?
If windows are approved by Secured by Design, the national police security initiative which aims to reduce burglaries and break-ins through quality products, then this is a reliable sign that they’re safe and secure.
Don’t be afraid to ask a supplier about security. They should be keen to talk to you about their security partners, how their windows lock, and the ins and outs of lock-makers.
Can I see any customer testimonials?
If a company has no positive customer testimonials or doesn’t display any on their website, they might be best avoided. Of course, almost anyone can fake reviews, and they shouldn’t be relied on completely. Still, this is certainly another thing to keep in mind when shopping around.
Do you manufacture your own windows?
A company that manufactures and fits all its windows has ultimate control over its supply chain and quality control. It’s a sign of their commitment to creating high-quality products. We custom make all our products in our South-West factory and couldn’t be more proud of the results!