Leaded Windows vs. uPVC

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Leaded windows give character to any property and to change their proportions or visual acuity can make the property unbalanced. However, as homes become increasingly modern, many people choose uPVC windows instead. Providing your house is not listed nor in a conservation area this can be acceptable but care should be chosen to get the uPVC as close to the sizes of the existing as possible. Here are a few reasons why leaded windows shouldn’t be forgotten when choosing windows for your home.

single-lead-windowLeaded windows are just as tough

Leaded windows, traditional in their manufacture, cause many people to perceive them as weaker compared to uPVC and double glazed units.  This is not true due to the way they are made, as each piece of glass is held securely within the leads by lead light cements. Break a piece of glass in a leaded light and it stays in place! We also build into the lead cames steel strengthening bars (not seen in the finished leaded light) so they are even stronger. Break a piece of glass in a leaded window and it stays in place as opposed to toughened glass in uPVC windows where the whole piece fractures into small fragments leaving one big hole.

Having established that traditional leaded windows are stronger than toughened glass in a uPVC window, there are also ways to improve it further with secondary glazing.

Historic aesthetic

For those who desire a traditional aesthetic, leaded window but would prefer the features of a uPVC window with double glazing, Steve Sherriff stained glass specialists offer a double-glazed unit with stick on leads that very closely emulate a traditional leaded window.  We apply the lead to both faces of the outer pane (which can be ordinary float glass, toughened glass or for security and safety laminated glass. We also have a boundary of lead and each of the joints is soldered, just like a traditional leaded window.  The lead is then patinated to match old lead.  We use a black coloured spacer bar to allow it to ‘merge’ in with the edge lead and the inner pane of glass is a thermally efficient glass to allow a major increase in your amenity within the building.

Stained glass windows

If you wish to capture the beauty of stained glass or you already have traditional stained glass windows we can provide new designs or upgrade your existing stained glass windows to a double-glazed unit (now effectively triple glazing).

steve-sherriff-stained-glass-leaded-window-grade-I-listed-parnham-house

Triple glazing within leaded windows

As stated, your original leaded and stained glass windows need not be lost in your transition to uPVC frames. Your stained glass windows can remain a feature of your new plastic frames with the advantage triple glazing affords whilst capturing the historic feel of your house.

Discover Steve Sherriff’s full range of services, including conservation grade double glazing and stained glass doors, by calling us on 01202 882208 or sending an email tomailto:info@lead-windows.co.uk.