26 Nov Letter to the Media
For the last 12 years, we among a small number of glass specialists, have been promoting the merits of dedicated glass for conservatory roofs boasting several key features including solar control, anti-glare and true self cleaning properties. Yet I believe we have as a sector been installing windows and doors in these installations that aren’t as fit as they could be for this purpose.
The windows and doors installed in new conservatories may be basic clear/clear, more typically standard low E, or even carry a Window Energy Rating. A typical ‘A’ rated window is designed bring in solar heat, something that the specialist glass that is now fitted in the roofing plane is designed exactly to stop, and for good reason. So whilst the roof glass keeps a large proportion of solar heat gain out – in our case as much as 83%, often the windows and doors below may well be designed to do the exact opposite.
It is for this reason we have just launched SMARTGLASS®-W, designed specifically for the windows and doors installed within a conservatory or similar environment. Within a perfectly clear unit it keeps the solar heat gain to an absolute minimum, carries a 1.0 W/m2K U-value and offers other added value features such as anti-fade properties. The fact is, we as an industry should be looking to address the entire glazing needs throughout a conservatory.
Let’s give the consumer a more technically balanced product and wake up to the opportunities of upselling to better performing glass in the vertical plane for conservatories. Window and Door Energy Ratings are all well and good for the replacement market, but certainly not in conservatories and their very demanding thermal comfort requirements, all year long.