Triple glazing is the very newest and latest development in window technology for the home. Companies having been trying to bring a commercially viable and affordable version of it to the market for years and recent breakthroughs in production have finally made it possible. But has it been worth the effort? It would seem that most installers seem to think so. But, for homeowners, what do you need to know?
As you can guess by the name, triple glazing uses three panes of glass which sit in a specially adapted frame. Between each of the panes of glass, as with double glazing, there is a gas which helps to keep the heat in. And it’s that extra frame of glass that keeps your home warm when it’s cold and cool in the summer. Triple glazing also has fantastic noise insulation properties too and, from a security point of view, it’s a significant step forward on from double glazing.
In this article, the team at CompareCompanies looks at:
- how much triple glazing costs
- triple glazing advantages
- triple glazing disadvantages
- double glazing cost versus triple glazing cost
- energy bill savings with triple glazing
- triple glazing FAQ
- how to save up to 30% on triple glazing installation
CompareCompanies works with trusted tradespeople across the United Kingdom – tradespeople we know and trust. We run a special service for homeowners where we’ll put you in touch with 3 or 4 local triple glazing specialists meaning you can secure the most competitive quote on your triple glazing installation. Some of our customers have saved over 30% by having a choice of quotes so it’s always worth shopping around.
Just fill in the form at the top of this page to get started.
How much does triple glazing cost?
Triple glazing is more expensive than double glazing – you should expect to pay around 30-45% more for triple glazing. However, the price you actually pay depends on the frame material, the window styling, and the size of the windows you have installed on your home.
To give you an idea about whether this will fit into your budget, here are some guideline costs on the supply and installation of triple glazing to different types of property:
|Type of property||How many windows to replace?||How many bedrooms?||Estimated costs|
As with any double glazing you might have installed, there are significant cost savings to be achieved by having more windows replaced at the same time.
This is for these two reasons:
- the more windows your installer buys from the manufacturer, the cheaper price they get, and
- on a small job, you might be paying for the fitters to be there all day. If they fit 12 windows in one day instead of 4, you save because you’ll be charged the same for the labour by the installation company.
Benefits of Triple Glazing:
Because of the price differential between double glazing and triple glazing, you should consider very carefully whether the added benefits you’ll get from triple glazing are actually worth the money.
Triple glazing, in many tests, has been shown to be nearly twice as good as double glazing on keeping heat in your home. The more heat stays in your property, the less you have to crank up the thermostat to keep it warm.
It’s all to do with something called the U-value. The U-value measure the amount of heat that an object, in this case a window, will let through it.
Single-glazed windows have a U-Value of about 5. Double glazed windows have a U-value of no more than 1.6. Triple-glazed windows have a U-value of around about 0.8 in most cases, half that of the very best double-glazed windows.
Enhanced sound insulation:
The extra pane of glass plus the sturdier construction makes insulating your home from noise from the outside much better. Triple glazed windows are very common installations on homes underneath a flight path or by a very busy main road.
Major security benefits:
Triple glazed windows are much tougher than double glazed windows and it’s much harder for a burglar to force their way in through one. Triple glazed windows have been designed with security in mind – they benefit from a middle layer of super-strong tempered glass and from other major enhancements like multi-point locking systems.
It sounds counterintuitive but the more glass there is in a window pane, the less light will be let in. Tests have actually demonstrated the very small reduction in the amount of light available in rooms onto which triple glazing is installed. Your rooms will feel very slightly lighter but, in most cases, it will be difficult for a homeowner to perceive any real difference.
More difficult to install:
Because triple glazing frames weights a lot more than double glazing, your installer will need to make sure that the walls can support them otherwise they may do damage to your property over the very long term.
You will probably require a more skilled installer to work on the job as well not only because of the weight but because, if they are not fitted properly, the performance of your triple glazing may actually be worse than the double glazed windows that you’re replacing.
Triple Glazing VS Double Glazing?
As we mentioned earlier, triple glazing costs between 30% to 45% more than double glazing. It costs much more to manufacture them. To give you a rough idea of the differential in price between double glazing and triple glazing, the CompareCompanies team have compiled the following budget reckoner to help you:
|Material||Window Size||Double Glazing Cost||Triple Glazing Cost||Difference|
|PVCu White||160cm x 100cm||£305-£335||£395-£425||£90|
|PVCu White||190cm x 100cm||£340-£370||£450-£480||£110|
|PVCu White||200cm x 110cm||£365-£395||£485-£515||£120|
|PVCu Woodgrain||160cm x 100cm||£465-£515||£565-£625||£110|
|PVCu Woodgrain||190cm x 100cm||£490-£550||£610-£670||£120|
|PVCu Woodgrain||200cm x 110cm||£520-£580||£650-£710||£130|
There are, undoubtedly, significant additional benefits to homeowners making a positive and informed choice to install triple glazing. However, this additional cost means that it will take you much longer to pay back the cost of your installation through savings on your gas and electricity bills.
How much will I save on energy bills with triple glazing?
A lot. If you replace your current double glazing, single glazing, or secondary glazing, you might achieve annual savings of up to £155 a year by replacing every external window on your home with triple glazing. And in a time when the cost of gas and electricity seems to be outpacing inflation by some distance, those savings might continue to grow in size every year.
Using the latest statistics from the Energy Savings Trust, the following are reliable indications on the amount you’ll save heating your home each year after you have triple glazing installed on your home.
|Energy rating||Medium detached||Medium semi||Terraced home|
Bear in mind that every home is different and savings will vary.
Should my home be insulated to receive the maximum benefit from triple glazing?
Ideally, you should. Insulation stops heat escaping from your walls and from your loft. Although you will probably still save money by having triple glazing installed without having your home being insulated, it’s likely that the level of savings you make will be significantly lower.
As with all types of glazing, a simple and cheap way to stop heat loss is, when it gets dark, to close your curtains fully. The thicker the curtains you have, the better.
Triple glazing FAQ
How does the glass work in triple glazing installations?
Although triple glazing shares many of the same principles behind the way it works with double-glazing, there are some important differences which account for its enhanced performance.
As you know, there are three layers on glass fitted into your window frame. The pane that faces the outside is a low iron glass which uses a tiny amount of ferric oxide to provide ultra-enhanced visual clarity to the outside from your home.
The ferric oxide uses gets rid of the slightly greenish-blueish tint you might have noticed in standard double-glazed panes. It’s the same technology that’s used in aquariums and display cases to make what’s inside really vivid and striking.
You may have heard of this type of low iron glass under a different name – Optiwhite, Starlite, Diamant, Ultrawhite, Starphire, Krystal Klear, and Eurowhite.
For the middle pane, tempered glass is used. Tempered glass is used to prevent the pane from cracking under the pressure of significantly different temperatures on each side of the pane. It’s also great for security as tempered glass can withstand up to 24,000lbs per square inch of pressure being applied to it.
The inner pane is made from the same material as the outside frame except for the addition of something called a low-E (low-emissivity) coating whose sole job is to bounce the heat back into your home rather than letting it escape to the street.
What choice of frames do I have with triple glazing?
Because of the third pane of glass used, triple glazing is a lot heavier so it needs a frame that’s able to cope with the extra weight. The popular types of frame used in double glazing have all been successfully adapted to be able to successfully function as the frames for triple glazing.
This is important because different types of frame change the visual qualities of your property both outside and on the inside and, as a homeowner, you want your home just the way you want it to look. Ask an installer for advice on the types of frame and the impact that will have on cost.
Aesthetically, many homeowners absolutely love wooden frames because of its natural and often rustic appearance. Each frame is individually made in the factory and they’re fully tested prior to being sent to your installer to make sure that they’re strong enough to hold three panes of glass and that they will successfully resist damage and distortion in the future. Wooden frames require more maintenance than any other type of frame and they’re also the priciest option open to you.
uPVC frames remain the most popular choice for both double glazing and triple glazing. Offering, in most cases, a minimum 25 years of use, the material doesn’t fade or rot or warp. No framing material is more fire-resistant or water-resistant meaning that uPVC frames are very low maintenance indeed. uPVC also offers homeowners fantastic heat and sound insulation properties.
Currently the most popular type of frame seen frequently in most style and home improvement magazines is the aluminium frame. They look sleek and modern, they can last for over 50 years, they resist rust, and, although they’re not quite as low maintenance as uPVC frames, they’re not very far behind. They are significantly more expensive than uPVC, however.
Do I need planning permission for my triple glazed windows?
In most cases, no. If you live in a listed building or a conservation area, it’s always best to check with your local authority’s Planning Officers.
Should a professional install my triple glazed windows?
Yes. Triple-glazing installations require two craftsmen on a fit at the absolute minimum – it’s potentially very dangerous to do it yourself and you may do damage to both your property and its new windows.
CompareCompanies has a network of independent triple glazing installers around the UK. Every single one has been trading for a year at the very least and we’ve checked each installer’s CERTASS and/or FENSA registration status.
Let us put you in touch with three or four local to you. You can talk through your ideas with them, get them to answer your questions, and ask them to provide you with reassurance on areas that you might not be so sure about. Better still, each installer we introduce you to knows that they’re in competition with each other meaning you’ll pay less as they all seek to win your business – sometimes up to 30% less.
Just as important though, our service is free and you’re under absolutely no obligation to accept any quote provided to you by our installation partners.