What are the options for sliding Sash Windows & what do they cost?
Sliding sash windows have truly stood the test of time. Being an inherent part of British architectural history, they have remained popular for over two centuries now.
Especially if you’re renovating classical styles like Victorian, Regency or Georgian (or looking to build a new home inspired by those periods), you must include sliding sash windows for that authentic look.
The older styles of sash windows didn’t have an outer swing but nowadays manufacturers have incorporated this feature, known as “tilt / turn”, making them easy to clean.
A big advantage of sliding sash windows is that according to their design they can be opened at the top, bottom or both. Let’s look at the different options available so you can make an informed decision.
How many different types of sash windows are available?
There are essentially two types with one being traditional and the other more contemporary. This is because of the material used with timber for the former and uPVC for the later.
The timber option lends an authentic charm while the modern uPVC option provides low maintenance. Some manufacturers have a choice of softwood or hardwood in the timber option that comes with a limited guarantee.
Hardwood is known to be very durable and also acts as a great insulator and a wide range of stain or paint finishes can be used to highlight the beauty of the grain.
It is common to think that timber is difficult to maintain, but with the wide variety of paint finishes (in almost any colour), one can expect to have to carry out only a periodic maintenance check, even once or twice a year to monitor any cracks or decay.
These days they are also made with spiral balance mechanism that makes modern examples of timber sash windows very easy to use.
The more contemporary uPVC options have both a pull handle and a lift hook, so this makes them incredibly easy to operate.
You can also take advantage of new hinging mechanisms that allow you to slide or tilt them, making them easy to clean and maintain.
Another advantage of uPVC is that it is a very cost effective material to use in the construction of sash windows, at times costing 40% less than the traditional timber options.
If you want the convenience of UPVC but like the look of timber, then the option for wood-grained surfaces could be the answer, offering a finish that is very authentic.
- Smooth or wood-grain UPVC units can be found in around 15 different colour shades.
There is also a composite option where timber is used for the interior with aluminium clad on the exterior. This gives the authentic look on the inside while providing low maintenance and excellent weather proofing on the outside.
Common features of uPVC & Timber Sliding Sash Windows
Both of these, timber & UPVC, make good use of the latest energy efficient double glazed panels, with some models gaining A, or even A+ window energy ratings from the BFRC (http://www.bfrc.org/ ).
With both models you can select either single hung or double hung installations. The difference is that single hung sash windows only have one moving section, usually the lower one, whilst double hung sash windows allow both the top and bottom panel to move.
For double glazed sash windows, it is recommended that you have trickle vents fitted to the frames. The reason for this is to allow a small controlled amount of air circulation to avoid condensation. With homes in the UK becoming more and more insulated, condensation becomes an issue where there is no ventilation of any sort in a room.
How much do sliding sash windows cost?
With the wide variety of options available, you can expect options to be in in a wide budget range as well.
- The traditional timber box sash option is the most expensive and can cost upwards of £800 to £1,000 per window.
- uPVC sash windows are much cheaper and will cost in the region of round £500 to £700 for an average sized window.
- The cheapest option is to refurbish your old sash windows. This will be significantly cheaper at around £150 to £250 per window. In fact, if there is a chance to repair and re-weatherproof existing sashes then this should be given strong consideration over replacing them (where this is practical).
- Having uPVC in a coloured version can add 10% to 20% to the cost.
Sash Windows Price Guide
|Approximate Size||Constructed From||Average Sash Window prices|
|Single Sash: 600mm x 1000mm – B rated||Double Glazed White uPVC||from £192 – supply only|
|Single Sash: 900mm x 1000mm – B rated||Double Glazed White uPVC||from £650 to £750 – fitted|
|Single Sash: 1200mm x 1000mm – B rated||Double Glazed White uPVC||from £250 – supply only|
|Single Sash: 1500mm x 1000mm – B rated||Double Glazed White uPVC||from £700 to £850 – fitted|
Prices are for guidance only & are not intended as an offer to buy or sell – always get a written quote for the cost of installing fully fitted double glazed windows & doors that relates to your specific property
Frequently asked questions & answers about Sash Windows
Should I repair or replace old Sash windows?
Provided the unit is not beyond salvage, then it could make both financial and aesthetic sens to take a look at the cost of refurbishing, rather than replacing your sashes.
How secure are the latest sash window designs?
You can find units that have “secured by design” accreditation. Most good products will feature centre lock and restrictors certified to British Standard PAS 24.
Is UPVC suitable to use for listed buildings?
The simple answer is no. You are likely to have to follow specific guidelines from your local planning office in regard to what you can and can’t fit.
How long does it take to deliver & fit sash windows?
You should allow 4 to 6 weeks for manufacture (if they are made to measure). A team of professionals could usually refit a 3 bed property in 5 to 7 working days.
What about building regulations?
Check with your suppliers at order stage. However, most new units are fully complaint with Document L Building Regulations.
New units which go into existing frames may not have to comply – this is usually the case if you take your old windows out & repair them because refurbishing windows and doors is usually exempt.