The world we live in is full of dangers and unsavory characters. Our usual place of comfort and protection is our homes, but sometimes even they can attract attention. Fortunately, there are options available to you that add extra security.
Let's look at what happens in a secure window, and what you should look for when you make the decision to replace your current windows.
It is worth mentioning here that most people prefer to change windows to save money. Yes, they want to be safer, but not if it increases their heating bills. Most replacement windows are currently rated "A", and it does not make sense to buy a window that does not have it. But all windows "A" are not equal; It's worth making sure that you buy 70mm units – the price difference is negligible and you'll quickly recover the difference in energy savings.
PVCu is a fantastic material – it is stable, durable and requires virtually no maintenance. But it is really only plastic. The best windows are steel reinforced as standard (make sure it's standard, not an extra cost option). This reinforcement must cross the four sides of the frame. Check it carefully – it's a favorite of some manufacturers.
Internal or External Submission
You may have heard people talk about inner and outer beads, but what is the difference and why should you care?
When double glazing is added to the frame, it is locked in the window frame using either internal or external glazing. The disadvantage of external beading is that it can be removed from the outside simply by pricing it loose. It is then possible to lift the window off the frame and enter it. This is not possible with internal beading. The advice here is clear and simple: do not even consider the windows beaded externally.
The security of windows has improved in recent years, but it is worth it to be checked. Look for high security locks (and remember not to leave the keys!), And ask to see door furniture samples. Make sure the handle and locking system are sturdy.
Now bring your attention to how the moving element is attached to the frame. You should see several locking points that insert into solid outlets. All of these should be firmly attached to the internal steel reinforcement, not PVCu. Hinges should be immune to lifting, and ideally there should be anti-jemmy bolts.
The best replacement windows will include these features as standard, and they are completely adequate to withstand all but the most committed attacks.
Secured by Design
A superior manufacturer will incorporate all of the above features into its range of windows. But in some cases, for example when a window is particularly vulnerable – say because it's hidden from view and in a high-crime area, it may be worth going even further .
British police gave their support to the Secured by Design initiative. Supported by the Prime Minister, the DETR and the local government, Secured by Design supports the principles of crime design. Secured by Design (SBD) covers the locking mechanisms of doors and windows and these are tested for destruction in a laboratory. To pass the strict SBD criteria, they must also pass the British standards BS7950 and PAS 24.
Among other things, the addition of the SBD standard to a window means the addition of secure claw locks. These are made of reinforced galvanized steel and go up the hinge side of the window. They are located at the bottom, middle and top of the window and once the window is closed, it means that the window is now locked and secured on all four sides, which increases security and makes it essentially impenetrable.
Sometimes going further makes all the difference. The Secured by Design standard should make little difference to the overall cost of your new window project, especially since it is usually only required on the most vulnerable windows. And you can never put a price on the safety of your family.