Is secondary glazing better than double or triple glazinf for noise insulation?

(111 Posts)
MinimalistMommi Mon 04-Feb-13 10:41:36

Victorian period property cottage. Single glazed sash windows. The noise from busy-ish street is really upsetting/stressing me out. Didn't realise it would be this noisy until we moved in and then, of course, it's too late sad

DP's want me to rip out original windows and replace with UPVC style sash windows. I worry about ripping out original features and losing value on house.
I've read that secondary glazing, although a bit ugly, is better at noise reduction than double/triple glazed windows. Is this true?

Also has anyone here fitted secondary glazing and has it actually reduced noise? I would live to know! thanks

I really need mumsnetters help otherwise I'm gong to have to think about selling and buying again. sad

(More background information, front door opens directly into living room, I don't know if this 'lets in more noise' than a wall IYKWIM in comparison to separate hall and porch etc)

MinimalistMommi Fri 08-Feb-13 15:57:12

Wocket from what I've been reading on here and on-line, secondary glazing beats double and triple glazing for sound/noise reduction. From what I've seen on various websites, lots of types of windows can be done.

Fergus, I practically want to hug you right now LOL blush

JoannaAC Fri 08-Feb-13 16:02:38

Pleasure! Yes, it has made a difference, I was surprised too. They fitted for me - but I think they have a page on the website that shows you their fitting regions. Hope you get sorted smile

notcitrus Fri 08-Feb-13 19:19:06

We used 2 firms as one vanished after some windows, but all the ones we got quotes from had very unimaginative names, like The Real/Authentic/Southern/London Sash Window/Secondary Glazing Company. And their quotes varied wildly. We paid about 3k for 2 large bays and 3 other large windows to be secondary glazed and overhauled. The frames inside are white coated metal, but you hardly see them against the wood frames.
Some companies quoted 8 to 10k more for the same work!

MinimalistMommi Fri 08-Feb-13 19:59:25

notcitrus what was your reason for going with secondary glazing? Sound insulation or another reason?

MinimalistMommi Sat 09-Feb-13 10:10:03

So, should I get the Sash windows refurbished before I have the secondary glazing installed? A the moment they are draughty and rattle and in the upstairs bedroom two of the panes are cracked which obviously need to be replaced. The rooms are so cold right now, very breezy hmm

PigletJohn Sat 09-Feb-13 10:32:39

it will be easier to work on the old windows without secondaries in the way.

WocketInMyPocket Sat 09-Feb-13 17:28:45

Fergus - can I ask how the secondary glazing works on your bay - i.e. how does it sit given that each window is at an angle IYSWIM. Ours is actually a Bow window but when we asked for quotes on secondary glazing we were told that it would have to be one flat piece of glass across the whole bow as they couldn't contour it to fit?

Sausagedog27 Sat 09-Feb-13 19:19:43

I think you should get sashes refurbished before as well- it will be much easier before the secondary glazing goes in.

I also noticed your comment about replacing the door- you could ask a joiner to have a look at that as well- draft stripping that can really help with drafts etc. it would seem a shame to get rid of a lovely old wooden door, especially to replace with plastic (making an assumption here as you don't say) IMO it would look odd if you have kept the sash windows (which you should defiantly keep, by the way!) and I'd be worried about impact on value.

notcitrus Sun 10-Feb-13 11:25:31

We got it as the house was bloody freezing (partly because of no heating while the system was replaced), and the living room was immediately about 5 degrees warmer. And replacing the sashes with double glazed ones would have been around 10k we didn't have, and more disruptive and cold while the sashes were removed.

MinimalistMommi Sun 10-Feb-13 18:57:21

Decision made, we're getting sashes refurbished before having secondary glazing put in. Need to choose the company to do it now hmm

Sausage I hadn't thought about taking out front door and losing value, and I'm ashamed to say I was going to get one of those wood effect plastic ones blush which you're right, would be a bit of a slip up if we're keeping lovely sash windows ( which we definitely are!) thanking you for flagging this up! Our wooden front door is looking in not a great state....bad paint jobs in past, draughty etc...

notcitrus our house is freezing!!!! I just want to be warm again!!!

Sausagedog27 Mon 11-Feb-13 21:53:56

Speak to whoever you get to refurb your windows about the door- I've seen miracles worked before at the hands of a joiner! If they advise the door is past it, you could get one made to match. Don't even think about a plastic lookalike one!!! I am biased but if I was looking to buy a house, it would really really put me off if the door had been replaced. I do get that not everyone is like me though!!

Good luck in finding a company. Here is to a happy and warm house for you!

PigletJohn Mon 11-Feb-13 23:05:07

plastic doors <boak>

MinimalistMommi Tue 12-Feb-13 08:18:48

Thank you Sausage
Yes Piglet I was being incredibly stupid, Sausage saved me! thanks

camtt Tue 12-Feb-13 21:33:23

Another vote for secondary glazing from me. We live on a busy dual carriageway and had the acoustic glass secondary glazing fitted when we moved in as we are quite noise sensitive. It makes a huge difference, you would hardly know the road is there. We are moving soon, to a slightly less busy road but we will be putting in secondary glazing as soon as we can afford it.

Sausagedog27 Tue 12-Feb-13 21:39:34

Aww, thanks!

MinimalistMommi Wed 13-Feb-13 08:26:24

camtt I've PM'd you grin

MinimalistMommi Tue 19-Feb-13 10:04:24

PigletJohn now the children are back to school I'm back to researching which company to do our secondary glazing for us. I have a question that I wondered if you might know the answer to:

For sound insulation is it better to have the secondary glazing unit single glazed or double glazed? I have found a company that offers both options is their secondary glazed unit.

I guess the other option would be to look for a company that fits with acoustic glass.

PigletJohn Tue 19-Feb-13 13:14:03

more important is to have a thick, heavy glass, which is preferably a different thickness to the glass in the original window.

Most original windows are glazed in 4mm glass, secondary glazing in 6mm float or 6.5mm laminate will be suitable.

The incremental heat-insulation value of sealed dg units will not be significant once you have secondary glazing. Sealed units are also a bit tiresome when they start to mist up internally.

MinimalistMommi Tue 19-Feb-13 18:26:46

PigletJohn thank you for reminding me about possible misting up of DG units, I would worry about that happening, so I've contacted the company I'm thinking of using and have asked about the 6mm glass and making the secondary glazing with a single sheet of glass rather than the double glazed unit. thanks

PigletJohn Tue 19-Feb-13 22:31:38

will be interested to hear the prices, when you get them, and to know the section size of the timber.

MinimalistMommi Wed 20-Feb-13 09:27:22

PigetJohn I will let you know when it comes through, I'm finding this all a bit stressful really, making sure I get it right. It seems like so much money shock but, if done properly, I hope will be a selling point in the future so I'm trying to see it as an investment.

MinimalistMommi Wed 20-Feb-13 16:09:38

Arrrgggghhhhh, the company I'm in touch with are arguing the point that, even with using 6mm glass, a double glazed (with combination of 4mm and 6mm glass) secondary unit will be better at sound insulation. PigletJohn has pointed out, quite rightly, the risk of double glazing misting up, which I would worry about happening!

What to do?!?

PigletJohn Wed 20-Feb-13 16:43:03

will the company make more money out of sealed units? How much? Might that affect their judgement?

did they provide comparative db sound reduction figures, and what are they?

MinimalistMommi Wed 20-Feb-13 16:55:54

They said it would only be £100 off for using single 6 mm glass glazed units which surprised me as I thought DG units would cost more shock
No comparative db sound reduction figures, the website focuses more on their working with original sash windows etc IYSWIM.
At almost a grand per window (that's with VAT) I'm finding this super stressful.

PigletJohn Wed 20-Feb-13 17:42:20

well, if they say that DG secondary is better for soundproofing that 6mm secondary, they should must be basing that on measured tests, so they should must have the figures to prove it.

I don't know, I've always understood that secondary glazing doesn't need to be sealed units, and the difference is not significant. If I knew the figures that would make a difference. I don't have the texts any more but it must be around somewhere. Have we got any bright young architects to hand?

Can you find any other reputable suppliers to give a quote?

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