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Gary, Handyman
Category: Home Improvement
Satisfied Customers: 246
Experience:  25 yrs in home repair/building - 10 yr in live theatre set design/building
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Hi i had upvc [email protected] fitted some years ago and

Customer Question

Hi i had upvc [email protected] fitted some years ago and they have been great, over the last year or so a howling noise has been coming through them on windy days, and during the last bout of really windy weather it has become annoying to listen to, plus the fact it is letting cold air in -- i was given a 10 year warranty with them and they are only 6-7 years fitted so i contacted the company. they have sent me a letter asking for £40 call out fee refundable if the fault is within the terms of the warranty and all parts and labour not coverd by the warranty will be chargeable. unfortunately i was not given a written warranty just verbal plus i never thought i would ever need it. do you think i will be out money to get this fixed
Submitted: 4 years ago.
Category: Home Improvement
Expert:  Gary replied 4 years ago.

Gary :

Hi, and thank you for using Just Answer; Per your question here it's a tough one. Since you know there is a call out fee, I would do some homework first. First start out with the windows. On a windy day take a lit cigarette and go around the window. See if you can narrow down where the breeze is coming from. If it is coming from the window then you have a chance of a defect. However, that being said you need to watch around the framing of the windows as well. Sometimes as they age, the wood will shrink and the windows will pull away from the framing causing leaks. If you are seeing air come in between the framing and the window then you just confirmed what I just said. If this were to happen, then you will need to refer back to the warranty. Even though you don't have on in writing, you can go back to the company who installed them and ask to see a copy. In fine print it will tell you what they will and won't cover. Here you need to make a decision to see if your windows fit in their category of replacement. As for the call out fee, well this is to cover the cost of coming out to your place. In most cases when people call, their windows don't meet the warranty standards. That being said, the company knows this and do not want to absorb the cost - thus the fee. I would also recommend that you check around the outside of the window. See if you see any gaps large or small. If on a windy day and you hear the noise, go out with a smoke and see if it can be smelled or seen inside of your house. If you can see it, tape it so you have something to show to claim warranty. If you can't see it, it doesn't mean it's not there. Get a smoke detector and have someone hold it around the window where the smoke is coming in, that you can smell, and see if you can get it to go off. The cigarette smoke may not be enough, but you can buy spray smoke that they use to test smoke detectors. By using something as this, it will drift into your home and should set off the detector. If it does, do it again and make sure you get it on video. I would also have you go around to see if there is any movements with-in the windows. Shake the frame and see if anything gives. This will be a good start for you so you can make a better decision about what to do. If the company was to send out a man, they'll be doing the same thing. I wish you the best, and if you have any other questions, please ask. Gary