The predicted fall off for RMI* work after the pandemic has failed to affect the order books of Steel Window Association (SWA) members, as customers from both the commercial and residential sectors have continued to seek expert help in refurbishing their steel window systems across properties of all ages.


According to the SWA, there are a number of factors at play, including the continued shift in work/life balance towards WFH, and the many perceived benefits of maintaining properties in a good state of repair; as well as those customers seeking to improve the energy performance or appearance of their buildings.


Heritage contracts – where traditional steel windows have to be retained to respect listing conditions – have continued apace, but many of the members have also been fielding inquiries from occupants seeking to upgrade their existing windows to address heat loss, in response to rapidly rising heating costs.


Options include basic maintenance, where older frames are realigned or ‘set’ and new draught-stripping installed to drastically reduce air leakage through the windows, while many steel frames can accept upgraded glazing.  This includes switching to gas filled IG units and ones featuring warm edge spacer bars.


Most refurbishment contracts also include general overhaul of the fittings such as locks, handles and hinges, while corroded metal sections can be treated or cut out and replaced before new, high-performance paint systems are applied.


President of the SWA, Kris Bennell, confirmed, “The make-up of our membership ranges from those with the capacity to tackle very large-scale replacement programmes, as well as new-build contracts, to those who specialise in repair work.  Across the country and across the sectors, they are reporting renewed demand from commercial and domestic clients seeking to maintain and improve their buildings.”