The History Of Double Glazing

Between the 70’s and the 90’s, the sales of double glazing windows rocketed from just 16% to over 60% which resulted in homes being much more safer and a lot warmer for British families.

Where it all started

So, let’s go back to 1965 where it first started with single glazed windows. Around 50 years ago, double glazing was barely heard of and was a very rare thing to see. The houses that were being built post-war, were very draughty and people who lived in them struggled to get them warm and keep their homes insulated. This is because central heating was unheard of, even for the wealthy.

During the 60s and 70s, thousands of new homes were built including the tower blocks that dominate our skylines today. During this ten year period, all buildings were built with very poor insulation and people still struggled to warm up their homes.

In the first five years of this time period, a lot of the houses were being built and fitted with single glazed windows which although they helped keep things out, they caused a few problems for the home owners. People experienced:

  • Mould growing on the walls of the homes
  • Mould forming on and around the windows
  • Condensation and dripping which lead to the plaster breaking down

With much more problems, people were starting to realise that something had to be done. With mould especially, it can cause numerous health problems and is very bad for you so figuring something out was crucial.

Why is mould bad?

Mould can be extremely bad for you as it can cause allergic reactions, eye irritation, nose irritation, throat irritation, asthma attacks, respiratory problems and can also affect the sinuses. People may not understand the real danger of being exposed to mould but if you are around it long enough you can even form an infection in your respiratory system and you can get an infection such as, bronchitis.

When things started to change

Back in 1965 everything started to change. The government decided to protect future homes from these problems and protect the people who lived in them. They decided to set in stone some rules that would have to be made when building a home and this was backed up by the national building regulations. One of the rules was to encourage builders to invest in newer technology and materials that would help cut the energy costs.

Where did Double Glazing come from?

Although the Americans had been using double glazed windows in their homes since the 1940’s, the United Kingdom didn’t really start considering double glazing until the 1970’s. The reason it was so late coming to the United Kingdom was because of the prices of all the materials and the building codes being lax. So back then, it was very rare and very lucky to have a home with double glazing windows in Britain.

The 80’s did it

In the early 1980’s, windows were commonly made from materials, such as, timber and steel. As these windows seemed to cause all these issues, people wanted their homes to be more robust, warmer and also wanted them to last in the years to come. Because of this, the materials were rethought and that’s when we were introduced to uPVC windows and door frames.

uPVC (Unplasticised Polyvinyl Chloride) was known for being more sturdy and a firmer replacement for timber and steel. As well as uPVC being very cost effective, as these new uPVC windows were sealed and airtight, the thermal efficiency in each home increased.

When did double glazing rocket?

Between the 70’s and the 90’s, the sales of double glazed windows in Birmingham rocketed from just 16% to over 60% which resulted in homes being much more safer and a lot warmer for British families.

The benefits that the United Kingdom got from double glazed windows

  1. Warmth – Simply changing from single glazed windows to double glazed windows, British home owners benefited greatly. Their homes were much warmer and stayed insulated for longer.
  2. Quieter – Because double glazing is thicker, the glass reduces the impact of outdoor noise. This was a great benefit as it gave homeowners more peace and quiet.
  3. Security – Double glazed windows are a lot more secure than single glazed and come with top quality features to protect your home.
  4. Energy efficient – With having double glazed windows, homes became more energy efficient which resulted in less money spent on heating bills.


Today, double glazed windows are more common than single glazed windows. There are so many different designs available today that people can choose exactly what they want. Years ago, people with old fashioned and ancient homes were uncertain of double glazed windows as they were very modern looking and wouldn’t fit in with the style of an old home.

Today, companies around the world have been successful in creating different styles of double glazed windows to allow them to match any home. So from 1965 to the present day, double glazing has got better and its performance standards have risen significantly thanks to companies that have constantly made them better with different ideas.


Complete Glazing Birmingham
Unit 130, 180 Sherlock Street
Birmingham, B5 7EH
0121 405 1058
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About Us

Complete Glazing Birmingham is a sister company of Mainstream Windows a local double glazing, orangery and conservatory installation company based in Birmingham servicing Solihull, Knowle, Sutton Coldfield, Bromsgrove, Leamington Spa, Warwick and Evesham.



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