I am in the middle of having 22 year old sealed units replaced – 41 units in all including 6 French doors. I have some concerns about how the job is being done but my immediate concern relates to the French doors.
I had difficulty finding a glazing company to take on the job; the company that fitted the original units immediately came out to do a survey but never bothered to provide a quote, another came, gave me a price but never returned calls/emails/text messages to arrange dates to do the work but a third, who was doing work for my neighbours at the time, agreed to do the job.
He recognised that it was not going to be easy and explained that they would remove the existing beads, take out the old unit, remove the old putty from the frame and the back of the bead, silicone the back of the frame, insert the new unit, replace and pin the original beading. And cap off around the frame and beading with silicone.
As the first of the door units was being fitted I noticed that the original putty had not been removed from the back of the frame and the new unit appears not to be wide enough – there is an 8mm gap either side of the frame and the new unit. The overall width of the frame is 500mm but the new unit is 485mm. I immediately queried this with the fitters but they said it was perfectly okay and if it was wider it would not look right. To be honest I think they were spinning me a yard as nothing they said made any sense. When the unit was finally fitted you could see about 2mm of the spacer bar beyond the beading and reveal on the inside and they actually had to trim back some of the black tape which is all around the edge of the unit. Again, when I queried this they said they still needed to silicone around the beading and that would hide it! Also, the unit was placed directly onto the old putty whereas I expected silicone to be put around the frame rebate before the unit was fitted. Likewise, no silicone was put on the back of the beading before it was pinned into the frame, just a 2mm capping on the inside and outside of the unit.
I happened to discuss the issue with the joiners who made the original window and door frames and they said they would normally measure the overall width and reduce by 5mm when ordering the units, e.g. in my case the units should be 495mm not 485mm. Work has come to a stop because of the weather, clashes with other jobs and my concern that the door units are not the correct size. I’m hoping they will be back in the coming days to discuss my concerns and then to book dates to finish the job (16 units still to fit).
I would also like to query what packing should have been used between the frame and unit. The only packing I saw was on the bottom of the unit and frame, nothing on the sides or top. They actually used the red pads that were stuck to the new units, cut them in two to form a gap of about 8mm (the pads being about 4mm thick).
Am I just in being concerned or is the job being done correctly and acceptable? I would appreciate any comments or advice as I obviously want to get the job done properly and finished as soon as possible.
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