058 GGP 1214

GGP December 2014

Sealed Units & Sealants Sealing windows for winter weather Lili Wang, product manager at IronmongeryDirect, takes a look at some of the best window insulation solutions on the market that trade professionals can recommend to help prepare properties for winter. Keeping warm air in and cold air out is an obvious and cost effective way to cut heating costs during winter. Caulking, sealing and weatherstripping are simple yet effective air-sealing techniques that offer quick returns on investment. Weatherstripping is used to seal components that move, such as doors and operable windows, and caulk and sealants are generally used for cracks and gaps between stationary house components such as window frames. Weather seals When choosing a type of weatherstripping seal, it’s important to look for ones that will withstand the friction, weather, temperature changes, and wear and tear associated with their specific locations. The good news, is that there is a great choice of glazing seals on the market that can be used to reduce draughts and keep the warmth in. Leading brand AquaMac, for instance, provides high performance weather seals for timber windows. The seals stay looking good for years as they are manufactured using a water repellent foam that is unaffected by rot, mould or mildew. Aquamac seals maintain consistently high standards of energy efficiency, making them the perfect solution to help protect against the elements. Sealing sash windows to stop leaks can be slightly more difficult than other window types as they are renowned for having gaps that can cause major draughts. In addition, it is also harder to seal the space between the two window halves as they tend to rip off any glued-on window seals when opened. Fortunately, there is a good range of beads, weather strips and draught excluders on the market in an array of styles, designs, materials and applications which are designed specifically for traditional sash windows. 58 December 2014 tooled and extruded in almost all weather conditions. They tend to be the best all round sealant because they bond all common construction materials so are suitable for sealing and weatherproofing joints around windows and glazing systems. Low modulus silicone sealants, such as Bond It Ulti-Mate builders silicone, are a softer and more flexible silicone, meaning they are suitable for applications that require the joint to have continued movement. They adhere to most building materials and are ideal for windows that need to be opened and closed regularly. In contrast, high modulus silicone sealants are harder and less flexible and are used in applications that are not subject to high movement. Bond It Multi-Mate Multi-Purpose silicone is ideal for sealing joints and window frames in humid areas. It’s suitable for interior and exterior use and lasts for up to 20 years. Neutral cure silicone sealants are generally more versatile. This silicone is almost odourless and cures with atmospheric moisture to form a durable, permanently flexible rubber seal. The low modulus formulation copes with greater movement and no surface priming is generally necessary, except on very porous substrates. To decide which sealant to choose, there are a number of factors to consider. As well as performance, it’s important to consider the materials involved, the budget, the time and the level of convenience. Trade professionals who are unsure about which energy-saving measures to use can find out more by talking to their supplier. www.IronmongeryDirect.co.uk Exitex, for example, offers a full range of sash window seal components that can be used to either refurbish traditional timber sash windows or be designed into new build sash window construction without compromising on style or seal integrity. These seals will help to reduce rattling and uncomfortable draughts, as well as improve the energy efficiency of the home. Once a suitable window seal has been chosen, it should be applied between the sash and the frame. The weatherstripping shouldn't interfere with the operation of the window and it should be applied to clean, dry surfaces, fitting snugly against both surfaces. To determine how much weatherstripping you will need, measure the perimeters of all areas to be weatherstripped, and then add 10% to accommodate any waste. Also remember that weatherstripping comes in varying depths and widths. Sealants To seal gaps on window frames, sealants are a good way to make the joints waterproof and weatherproof. Despite not having great strength they are particularly effective in keeping moisture out and providing thermal insulation. Similar to weather seals, they will ultimately help to reduce draughts and heating bills. There are a huge range of sealants on the market to cater for different conditions and materials including single component Modified Silicone (MS) polymer based sealants, low and high modulus silicone sealants and neutral cure silicone sealants. MS polymer based sealants offer excellent adhesion to non-porous surfaces and can be


GGP December 2014
To see the actual publication please follow the link above