Thinking of installing new windows? Where do you start?
The amount of information available can be daunting. The sales person's priority is to sell you their products, which may not always meet your needs or have been designed with security in mind.
What specification to look for
The Police recommended standard for new windows is BS 7950. This is the current standard for 'Windows of Enhanced Security' accredited by the British Standards Institute.
This standard is also a requirement of the Association of Chief Police Officers 'Secured by Design' award scheme, which is an award given to houses or other buildings which have been designed to be secure.
What Does a BS 7950 Window Offer?
These windows offer a high degree of security, and can withstand the most determined burglars.
How available are BS7950 windows?
Only about 10% of PVCu manufacturers produce windows even to the lower British Standard which is required for the normal manufacture of ordinary, 'not enhanced security', windows. So be careful, the rest operate without properly monitoring quality control. They may, or may not, produce good windows. It is very difficult to determine by just looking, and there is usually no performance guarantee.
Is there a cost implication?
Yes, as with all high quality products. But it is easy to see why: - incorporating metal frame reinforcement, quality locks and hinges, and the increased labour time involved in assembling a quality product to strict quality control standards, will obviously incur extra costs. But remember, a window that is thrown together, will just as easily be forced apart! However, the good news is that future maintenance costs are potentially reduced, as burglars no longer attempt to break in, so no replacements are required.
Check with your insurers, you might get a discount on your premium.
The Police recommended standard for exterior doors is PAS 24-1.
PAS stands for 'Product Assessment Specification', which is an interim British Standard.
This standard is also a requirement of the 'Secured by Design' award scheme.
A combination of windows and doors with this level of security performance vastly increases the physical protection to your home.
So choose wisely and LOCK 'EM OUT!