Authorised by the government in the UK in April 2002, FENSA (Fenestration Self-Assessment Scheme) came into being as the first scheme relating to Competent Persons involved in the installation of windows and doors in both England and Wales.
Why do I need a FENSA authorised installer?
When you are looking for a company to assist with windows and doors for your property it is very important to check if the company you are looking at using is FENSA registered. Any installer is required to be a member of a Competent Persons Scheme (CPS) that is authorised by the government, and FENSA is one of these schemes. In order to become a member of such a scheme an individual or company will have not only undergone a rigorous vetting procedure but will also be the subject of regular routine inspections by FENSA themselves, in order to ensure that compliance to Building Regulations is being followed properly. If it is found that they are not, then they will be required to correct any issues, or they could be suspended until the work that is needed to ensure compliance has been done.
When you choose a FENSA registered installer for your windows and doors you are ensuring that the level of service you receive will be of a very high standard and if there are any issues then you will be able to get them dealt with. Unfortunately, those companies who are not registered with FENSA or another CPS may not be as honest when it comes to dealing with any issues you might have after installation.
What is covered by a FENSA certificate?
The FENSA website (fensa.org.uk) states “FENSA covers the replacement of external windows, doors, roof windows and roof lights against the relevant Building Regulations in domestic properties on the original foot print of the property where the use or size of rooms have not been altered.” So, if you have windows or doors replaced on your property or have moved to a property that has had these replaced since 1st April 2002, then there should be a FENSA certificate to cover the installation.
Keep your certificate safe
Following the installation of your windows or doors you will be issued with FENSA certification and it is very important that you keep this in a safe place. If at some point in the future you want t put your house up for sale then the solicitor acting on behalf of your buyer is likely to request a copy of the certificate for their client so that they know that any replacement windows or doors have been fitted by a competent installer. Fortunately. if you have misplaced the certificate you can request a replacement but they are costly at £25 (including VAT) each.
Here at Oaktree Joinery, we’re delighted to report that we are, and continue to be FENSA certified, so when you use our services, you can be sure that the job will be done to the highest of standards.
In recent years uPVC has seen a considerable surge in popularity when it comes to windows and door treatment. Many consumers see it as the cheaper and more durable option on the market, but sometimes cheaper, unfortunately, isn’t the best and it is worth investing that little bit extra. However, don’t just take our word for this, we have set out some information on both UPVC and timber windows and doors so that you can make the best decision for your property.
Often the main reason that people look to replace their windows and doors is energy efficiency, and with so many people becoming more ecologically aware it makes sense to consider those areas of the home where cold air might get in. Ensuring that your windows and doors are in good condition and fit perfectly is very important in this respect. While there is no denying the advantages of double-glazed panels, it is worth thinking about your frames as well. Regardless of what type of glass you choose to use, wood is an excellent product that offers natural insulation. This makes it a choice that is well worth considering.
What makes UPVC windows and doors cheaper is the fact that they are typically mass-produced. While this isn’t necessarily a bad thing, it does mean that there are some limitations when it comes to selecting something that is in keeping with the style of your home. Timber window frames and doors can be custom made to your exact requirements and the style of your home. They are a bespoke product that means you can get precisely the product you are looking for. It also means, in terms of aesthetics, that you can even replace the original designs of your home if you have an older property. Timber offers you something that uPVC cannot replicate when it comes to a period property, and, of course, it is worth considering that there are a variety of colours and finishes available.
It might surprise you to know that timber with a factory finish can last longer than uPVC. However, you do need to put a little effort into ensuring that it remains in good condition a wipe down and a refresh when necessary should be all that is required. Every 8-10 years it is worth having a full repaint done to keep everything looking fresh and cared for. While there is no need to repaint uPVC, over time you will notice that it begins to lose that lovely white finish that attracted you to it in the first place and it may become somewhat discoloured. If you need to make any repairs to your frames, it is easier to do this if they are made of wood.
As we already mentioned timber frames do come at a price, but when you weigh up the benefits of selecting timber over uPVC, it is easy to see that over time the extra money that you invest in timber window frames should pay for itself. All you need to do is ensure that you care for them properly.