Noise reduction - Window/Curtain options

(18 Posts)
greenngn Wed 25-Feb-15 12:06:47

Hi there,
I've been having a lot of problems recently with external noise getting into my bedroom in fulham. The heathrow flight paths seem to have changed and the noise starts at about 5am and is loud enough to wake us both up!
I currently have (some quite old) sash windows, heavy wooden plantation shutters and curtains...which I thought would be enough.
I've looked into 'silent sash windows' from the likes of Hugo Carter, noise reduction glass and simpler solutions like thicker/double layer of curtains.
The Hugo Carter quote was nearly £6k for two sash windows, which seems very steep.
Has anyone got any good advice on whether to go for completely new windows vs replacing the panes with noise reduction glass? If anyone has used Hugo Carter, would love to know what the experience was like...Thanks! smile

Millionprammiles Wed 25-Feb-15 12:59:09

Hi - we've just replaced a couple of single glazed windows (casement so not sash though) for far less than £2k. One with normal double glazing and the other with acoustic double glazing. The noise reduction is definitely noticeable between the two, noises are more muffled though very loud noises (low planes, helicopters) can still be heard.

We were advised that secondary glazing would be more effective still (though was a lot more expensive so we didn't install it). Maybe someone who has had SG might post of their experiences.

If you've the original sash windows then would definitely suggest considering pane replacement or SG if cheaper than replacing the whole sash.

Would recommend getting a few quotes as most companies will be willing to negotiate on price. Look at online/local recs and non London companies too. Most companies seemed to do some version of acoustic glass.

greenngn Wed 25-Feb-15 14:10:41

Thanks!

I've just spoken to a nice chap from Sash Window Man who said they could make new sashes for both windows (rather than replacing the entire frame) using special noise reduction glass for about £2.8k...

Seems like a much better option

PigletJohn Wed 25-Feb-15 17:04:02

you might also consider secondary glazing, which is usually more effective.

greenngn Wed 25-Feb-15 17:16:19

I'm actually quite keen to avoid secondary glazing both for aesthetic reasons and because on a practical note, I don't think there is enough room between the existing glass and my wooden shutters to accommodate it.

I know it's the most effective option and probably a fair bit cheaper than new windows or putting new glass into the existing frames, which is a shame.

Thanks though!

Jellytussle Wed 25-Feb-15 21:05:21

Double glazing is much more effective at cutting noise than single glazing, because the air or gas trapped between the panes acts as a spring and absorbs a lot of the vibration in the air. The wider the gap between the two panes, the lower the wavelength of sound it can effectively absorb. Hence why secondary glazing can be effective as there's usually quite a wide gap between the window itself and the secondary pane. The low frequencies are hardest to block.

Trouble is that this only makes any difference if the window forms a good seal. If there's a gap or if the window is open, sound will just leak round the edges.

RaphaellaTheSpanishWaterDog Wed 25-Feb-15 23:01:20

Just a word of caution - we had new timber double glazed sash windows fitted to the front elevation of our last house, opting for acoustic glass because we were on a main road and tbh, I didn't think they made that much of a difference. Ours were £10k for seven, but that was a small joinery co in rural Wiltshire.

I know it's not an option for you, but next time I would definitely go down the secondary glazing route.....unfortunately DH wouldn't consider this before.

I'd definitely want to investigate all the options and see some in action before reaching a decision!

Gumps Wed 25-Feb-15 23:20:41

Check with BAA to see if you are eligible for help with noise reduction. We could have chosen free secondary glazing but opted for triple glazing through Everest with 50% off all bedrooms.

Millionprammiles Thu 26-Feb-15 08:48:48

A word on triple glazing - its less effective for noise reduction than acoustic or secondary glazing. The real benefits of TG are warmth (its often used for large conservatory doors etc).

Everyone who came to quote told us secondary glazing was the most effective for noise reduction (even the company that didn't supply it themselves). We didn't install it as the windows were old and needed replacing anyway but are considering it for front windows.

I do see your point about the shutters though...

areyoutheregoditsmemargaret Thu 26-Feb-15 09:10:36

Sounding stupid- what is the difference between double glazing, secondary and triple? Are double and secondary the same? FWIW we have noise-reducing acoustic glass in one set of windows, can't afford to do whole house atm, and it makes a huge difference.

charlestonchaplin Thu 26-Feb-15 09:38:37

If money were no object I would recommend solid external shutters, secondary glazing with a different thickness of glass from your existing windows and interlined curtains.

Secondary glazing involves installing a second window on the inside of the existing window. Some people find it bulky and obtrusive but more streamlined systems have been developed which many find are acceptable in appearance.

The improvements over double glazing for noise reduction come from the increased distance between the panes of glass than in double glazing and also from the fact that you can use a different thickness of glass which reduces a different sound frequency from your original windows.

greenngn Thu 26-Feb-15 11:28:16

Thanks for the tips about BAA Gumps. I gave them a call and apparently I'm not in one of the eligible zones (which seems pretty ridiculous given the level of noise I'm experiencing and the frequency of the flights...)

Current preferred plan of attack is new windows with acoustic glass/old windows refurbed with acoustic glass, teamed with my existing interior wooden shutters and a thick lining sewn into my curtains.

Fingers crossed, that will do the job!

HugoCarter Fri 12-Jun-15 18:43:44

Message deleted by MNHQ. Here's a link to our Talk Guidelines.

PigletJohn Fri 12-Jun-15 19:07:21

nothing to do with the windows, but I see your web designer has chosen to use light grey text on a white background.

If you want people to be able to read it, black on white is infinitely preferable

Sleepybeanbump Fri 12-Jun-15 19:10:07

We have twice had replacement sash windows, the second time with noise reducing glass (twatty neighbours opposite, and everyone in our road seems to spend all night slamming car doors for the fun of it).

They are amazing. Really notice the difference. The company we use is about 1400 per sash (might be a tad more with the special glass- no more than 10%. Sps timber windows in Wimbledon park. Used them twice. Have recommended them endlessly on here.

supermomoftanny Wed 30-Sep-15 10:24:50

The noise problem may be due to the poor insulation of your windows. We replaced our windows last month due to similar problem. We had these old fixed windows in our upstair bedroom. We replaced it and installed double hung windows from Landmark home solutions in Toronto. The foam filled vinyl frame kind of solved the problem.
www.landmarkquality.com/home-improvement/5-things-to-consider-before-buying-new-windows/
The blog contains some details about things to consider before buying new windows. Please go through it before taking a decision .

Amzyk1982 Mon 15-Feb-16 12:55:40

The ‘silent’ in name is well deserved!

We recently moved house, bigger space, better neighbourhood, we love it here, but we did not realise that outside noise would be as bad
We suffered having 24h bus route outside our bedrooms. Our two daughters, aged 2 and 4 (normally very good sleepers!) were waking up frequently during nights. At first we thought it was the change, the move itself and we were just waiting for them to get used to the new place, but after some time we just realised it must be the noise!
We’ve done a lot of research and we chose Hugo Carter. We were really impressed with their surveyor, he understood how noise can affect daily life and explained the idea of noise reduction windows in simple terms. We decided to invest in Silent Sash Windows 4 in total

After the installation – Wow! We couldn’t believe the difference! Those windows really shut out outdoor noise! Our girls finally stopped waking up in the night, they sleep as they used to in our old house. Me and my husband are relaxed and rested.
Installing new windows was by far the best change we made in our property to date

AlexC88 Sat 07-Jan-17 18:30:00

Hi greenngn,
Who did you get to do your windows in the end? and how was your experience? I'm going through a similar noise issue.
Alex

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