41. The windows go in

The job is quick and transformative

2nd September 2014

How many strapping lads from Yorkshire does it take to fit a window? If you look closely at this photo you will see that the answer is three. That's because our windows are triple glazed and seriously heavy. Having just put 300mm of Kingspan insulation on our roof, we can't spoil the energy efficient party with anything other than top drawer windows.

We are using Ecocontract windows supplied and fitted by the Green Building Store in Huddersfield. As well as being triple glazed, the windows also have insulated frames (i.e. the timber frames have an insulated core) in order to reduce heat loss through the frames as well as through the glass. Steve, Chris and Nathan are fitting them at a cracking pace and turning our cardboard box house into something that, for the first time, begins to feel like it might be a home. That's because the windows and doors are the first building components that are finished - everything else to date will disappear behind final finishes, both outside (brick and render) and inside (plasterboard, tiles and paint). So today I opened the door to the conservatory for the very first time. A great moment but, as the conservatory is still some way off, I stepped through it onto the scaffold.

It's obviously critical to any building project that the windows fit. Happily I haven't been worrying about this as our architect, Peter Smithdale, has been his usual meticulous self in matching the window specification to the timber frame. Luke Gilman at Green Building Store was also incredibly helpful and put up with endless changes to the spec before we were absolutely sure we had what we wanted. I'd like to sit back and enjoy them but there's nowhere to sit and far too much to do.

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